Sunday, November 17, 2013

Coconut Battered Shrimp (low carb, paleo, Whole 30)

Coconut Battered Shrimp - made October31, 2013 from Ditch the Wheat
Back when I was eating the Whole 30 way, I found a plethora of recipes using coconut.  I'm more used to baking with coconut but since you're not supposed to consume sugar, dairy or grains on Whole 30, my usual options weren't - well - an option.  However, this coconut shrimp recipe was.
I had a canister of coconut flour in my pantry that I had bought some weeks ago because, at the time, I was planning on making a dessert recipe that called for it.  I never got around to making that particular recipe but it was handy for making this one. I had never cooked or baked with coconut flour before so I wasn't sure what to expect.  But I found out soon enough.  It turns out coconut flour makes a thick batter.  And that it doesn't adhere very easily to shrimp.  I had the devil of a time getting it to stay on the shrimp long enough for me to roll it in coconut and drop it into the hot coconut oil. 
Several key learnings: coconut itself browns very quickly so you don't want to leave it in the oil for too long or it'll burn.  Fortunately shrimp cooks quickly so undercooking it isn't a big risk.  By the time your coconut turns golden brown, the shrimp should be cooked as well.  I also discovered that you can't have coconut oil at too high of a temperature or it'll burn all on its own.  At first I thought it was the coconut itself burning then when my oil got dark too soon, I realized I had the burner on too high.  Lastly, I learned neither coconut flour nor coconut oil is easy to work with unless you know what you're doing. Which I didn't before and I hope I do now.  Mine didn't come anywhere as nice looking as the one from Ditch the Wheat but I thought it was still pretty tasty.  It's really hard for me to mess up shrimp to the point I wouldn't like it though.
2 eggs
2 ½ tablespoons coconut flour
¼ tsp of baking powder
dash of Salt & pepper
1 tsp of your preferred seasoning *optional
8 medium sized shrimp, without the shell
½ cup or more of unsweetened coconut flakes
  1. Preheat your deep fryer to 325 degrees F.
  2. In a bowl whisk the eggs.
  3. Add the coconut flour, baking powder, salt & pepper, and any additional seasoning.
  4. Mix until the batter is smooth.
  5. Put the shredded coconut flakes in a separate bowl.
  6. One at a time, place the shrimp in the batter and using your hands mold the batter around the shrimp and then immediately dip the batter covered shrimp in the coconut flakes.
  7. Press the coconut flakes all over the shrimp and set aside.
  8. Repeat for each shrimp.
  9. Place about 3-4 shrimp at a time in the deep fryer, flipping once when the underside of the batter is golden.
  10. The shrimp is done when it floats to the top, both sides of the batter are golden brown and the shrimp is a pink color.

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