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Monday, January 24, 2011

Shrimp Firecrackers

I know you're gonna love this one!

A wee-bit time consuming, but really worth the effort...the Shrimp Firecracker! Perfect as an appetizer to celebrate a New Year! Or celebrate a Tuesday... Whatever floats your boat, I say!

Now, I say "firecracker" and one might assume "spicy". Not so, young padawan. You could make these spicy if you so desired, or leave them as is. The flavor combination here is excellent as they are, but I could seriously see some heat being added to the party. Maybe make a spicy dipping sauce?

If you wanted to make these for a different occasion, say one where a "firecracker" type theme doesn't really make much sense, you could make the filling into regular egg rolls or beggar's purses just as easily.

Dice up some water chestnuts.

Then green onion.

Then parsley.

Take a pound of these babies...

...and dice them into teeny pieces.

Put the shrimp, ginger paste and garlic in a bowl.

Stir and smoosh everything together. This could easily be done in a food processor, but I don't own one. And I like the filling kinda chunky.

Toss in the water chestnuts, green onion and parsley that you chopped up so nicely.

Make a slurry with soy sauce and cornstarch.

Add the slurry to the shrimp mixture.

Stir everything together and the filling is all done!

Boil some salted water.

Toss in the chives and blanch for about 45 seconds or so.

Remove from water and separate into strands on a paper towel.

Cut a package of egg roll wrappers in half.

Layout a few pieces at a time to work with.

Add filling to the center of each wrapper.

Use you fingers to wet the outer edges of each rectangle with your egg wash.

Now they are ready to roll. Try to roll as tightly as you can, leaving 1/2 inch or so on each side of the wrapper empty.

Twist and pinch the ends closed.

Tie each end with a chive.

All wrapped up and ready for frying!

Fry in batches and let drain on paper towel lined plate.

Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce.

Shrimp Firecrackers

Makes about 20-25

1 pound cooked, shelled, and deveined shrimp
2 tablespoons ginger paste
2 minced garlic cloves
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3 scallions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
8 water chestnuts, rinsed and finely chopped
Egg roll wrappers
1 egg, beaten with 1 teaspoon water
Vegetable oil for frying
Fresh chives, blanched, at least 4 inches long

Finely chop shrimp and add to a large bowl with the ginger and garlic; stir and smash/smoosh together. Stir in scallions, parsley and water chestnuts. Combine soy sauce and cornstarch in small bowl until cornstarch is dissolved. Pour this mixture into the shrimp mixture and stir to combine.

Cut egg roll wrappers in half. Brush one rectangle lightly with egg. Spoon about 2-3 teaspoons of shrimp mixture into center and roll up. Gently twist the ends and pinch shut. Tie each pinched end with a chive. Place firecracker on a parchment- or Silpat-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Repeat with remaining filling and dough.

Heat oil to about 350 in a frying pan. Add firecrackers in batches and fry 3-5 minutes, turning once. When browned, remove to a paper towel lined plate to absorb any extra oil. Serve hot.

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