French Fridays with Dorie – Shrimp & Cellophane Noodles

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For a 27 year old who loves shrimp I feel this is a weird thing for me to say: this is the first time I ever cooked shrimp in my life. Normally I wouldn’t make it at all because Tristan is allergic but I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY wanted to both make and eat this so my neighbor helped me out by loving shrimp as much as me and helping me eat it. Plus she made burgers for our husbands so they could have something for dinner too. Good neighbor!

Another shocking statement coming your way – I had the day off on Sunday! And I have the day off today! It’s a miracle! On Sunday we took a little shopping trip down to Madison where I picked up these shrimp at a fancy new grocery store for a steal! I did have to peel and de-vein them but I’ve watched my dad do that enough times that I wasn’t really worried about it. It took me longer than I thought it would and it was kind of gross but I guess that’s a small price to pay for big delicious shrimps.

My neighbor also helped me out by doing some of the shopping for this recipe on her way home from work. She picked up the mushrooms, cilantro, and tomato portion of this meal so that I could get cracking on making it right at 6:15 when I got home. I’ve mentioned it before but I am just starting to like mushrooms and these floppy wood-ear ones were kind of s stretch for me. I mean, do they look like something you want to eat?

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No, no they don’t. In fact, they look like something I would avoid at all costs, but I bravely soldiered on. They are kind of a weird consistency but I chopped them up really fine and tried not to think about it.

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I even hauled out my wok, which sees very little play in the kitchen and was very excited to be used last night. Just like Dorie said, it all came together very quickly once it got going. I mean all the directions for cooking were in seconds, not minutes so I felt a little bit of pressure to have all my shit together. Usually you have some time to dick around while something is simmering but that was not the case last night. After dumping in the tomato everything kind of looks a mess until you garnish with cilantro but it smelled very, very nice.

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And tasted really interesting! I definitely liked it a lot but the flavor is hard to describe. The five-spice powder really can’t be explained, just tasted I think. I hauled-ass over the the neighbors’ once I had this put together and we enjoyed it while catching up on Once Upon a Time and Revenge and drinking some Tilia Bonarda which is a really delicious and kind of little-known varietal from South America. Yum!

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22 thoughts on “French Fridays with Dorie – Shrimp & Cellophane Noodles

  1. I banished my wok to the donate pile this summer 😦 The use to space ratio wasn’t justifying keeping it around…
    Congrats on braving the shrimp and finding a dish that worked for you. What did you use for the tomato puree?

  2. I love mushrooms, but wood ears are not my favorite. Good for you for giving them a try! And congrats on making good with the shrimp and enjoying this dish! I really wanted to like it, and I mostly did, except for the noodles. They were just odd. But yours came out looking terrific! Well done!

  3. I’m happy to find someone else who liked this dish! I love shrimp, too, and I love using my wok. I drastically reduced the amount of tomato puree used, and I feel strongly that that has something to do with why I liked it. I also added a squeeze of lemon before serving and that brightened things up a bit!

  4. I’m glad someone enjoyed this one. And how great to have someone to share it too. I, on the other hand, didn’t like it. I enjoyed your enthusiasm though.

  5. Peeling shrimp is a thankless job until you get to eat them. Except in this dish. I really felt it wasn’t a good use of good seafood. Glad someone liked it!!!

  6. Ha ha – you are the first person apart from me who I have found that liked this. I didn’t find the weird mushrooms and used shitake instead. I had coriander but forgot it when I took my photo.

  7. First, if you can “do” Chinese tree-eared mushrooms, Maggie, you can go back and “do” chicken livers. Didn’t those mushroom and shredding them and eating them make you think of Mike Tyson? Yuck. Second, isn’t it fun to build food memories, like sharing a quick meal with neighbors, which you and Trustan (love that name) are doing, in a major way, by the food blogging process? It’s just adding another level to your lifestyle. After Michael died, what people, even our family, talked about the most, memory-wise, was 25 years of “meals and parties and celebrations” at the Hirschs. (Not that either one of you are going to die soon but you do want people to have something nice to say when you do.) Third, working hard has future rewards. I juggled 3 jobs – never earned as much as Michael with his 1 – but that kept my feminist tendencies in tact. Have nothing much good to say about this week’s recipe so had to think of other stuff…….

  8. Maggie, love that you prepared this recipe and did not change a thing about it and really enjoyed it too, respect! I ended up taking a lot of liberties with this one but we liked it that way! Isn´t it nice that you cooked with and for your friend – how wonderful to be sharing these “food memories”.
    Your pictures look wonderful and very appetizing too!
    Have a great weekend!

  9. It’s good to hear from someone who enjoyed the recipe! It’s hard working around allergies – my partner has celiac disease, so I do work-arounds regularly. Shrimp for the women and burgers for the men sounds like a great solution.

  10. Maggie, These dried mushrooms were not a favorite of mine…I also chopped them up very fine. Your Shrimp dish looks fabulous….a job well done! I left out the tomato puree…just didn’t sound appetizing to me. Glad you enjoyed it!

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