Fried Shrimp Flatbreads with Spicy Cardamom Sauce, and Weasels

Flood the moat; keep the rabble from the gates. Best advice I’ve had in weeks. And exactly what the chickens needed to hear. We may have a weasel. There was a weasel or squirrel or Chihuahua sized burrow hole at the door of the coop. The birds had new tremor in their wattles.

I was, at a time, obsessed with Annie Dillard. She has a lovely essay about Weasels, in particular, how to live like them. “One naturalist refused to kill a weasel who was socketed into his hand deeply as a rattlesnake. The man could in no way pry the tiny weasel off, and he had to walk half a mile to water, the weasel dangling from his palm, and soak him off like a stubborn label.” All I can say is, weasels, you don’t know what stubborn is. Stay away from my hens, or you’ll have a red-headed label at your throat.

shrimp flatrbead

Fried Shrimp Flatbreads with Spicy Cardamom Sauce

Adapted from Food and Wine

Sauces

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons buttermilk

2 tablespoons chopped mint

2 tablespoons minced chives

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

7 garlic cloves, minced

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

4 Thai chiles, minced

1 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Fried Shrimp

1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water

1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)

16 large shrimp (about 1 pound), shelled and deveined

Extra Virgin olive oil, for frying

Salt

Four 10-inch, thin flatbreads, such as naan, or thick flour tortillas, warmed

1 Hass avocado, sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick

1/4 cup diced red onion

For the sauce:

In a bowl, whisk the crème fraîche with the buttermilk, mint, chives, lemon zest and 1 minced garlic clove; season the crema with salt and pepper.

shrimp flatbread crema

In a blender, combine the remaining minced garlic with the chiles, cardamom, cumin and lemon juice. Puree until smooth. Season the cardamom sauce with salt and pepper.

shrimp flatbread peppers

For the shrimp:

Put the beaten egg and panko in separate bowls. Dip the shrimp in the egg, then dredge in the panko; transfer to a baking sheet. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.

shrimp breaded

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a saucepan, heat 1 inch of EVOO to 350°. Fry  as many shrimp as you can at a time, turning once, until browned and crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to a rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to drain; season with salt. When all of the shrimp have been fried, transfer them to the oven and bake until heated through, about 2 minutes.

shrimp on flatbread

Spread the warm flatbreads with the spicy sauce. Arrange the avocado and the shrimp on top. Scatter the red onion on top, drizzle with the crema and serve.

shrimp flatbread

For Easy Flatbread:

I use 2 cups whole wheat flour, 1 cup warm water, 1 tsp salt. Mix together and knead for 10 minutes. Let sit covered in a bowl for 2 hours. Then divide into 8 pieces and roll each out flat on a floured surface. Then heat a griddle and cook each for 1 or two minutes on a side. Easy easy. Not very crispy and very thin, but nice if you don’t want to go buy naan at the store for this.

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