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Masala Shrimp — My New Favorite Weeknight Recipe

Crunchy, fresh shrimp with the heat of cayenne and earthiness of turmeric. Sauteed for a few minutes in a pan, then garnished with cilantro, chopped avocado, and a squirt of lime.

It’s really supposed to be an appetizer. But I’m here to tell you it makes one great entree alongside Trader Joe’s tender naan.

This recipe for Masala Shrimp is by the Bay Area’s Niloufer Ichaporia King, and excerpted from her book, “My Bombay Kitchen” (University of California Press).

You’ll also find it in the new cookbook, “The Flavors of Asia” (DK Publishing), a compendium of pan-Asian recipes inspired by the Worlds of Flavors conferences at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena, where King was a speaker and presenter.

The cookbook is a great souvenir for anyone who’s enjoyed a “Worlds of Flavor” conference at the Culinary Institute.  And for those who haven’t, it’s definitely an inducement to make a beeline to the next one.

Shrimp Masala

(Serves 8 )

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or Indian chili powder

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 pound 8 oz shrimp (26-30 count), peeled and deveined

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 key lime, cut into eighths

24 cilantro leaves

1 small avocado, cut into small-dice (optional)
Combine the cayenne or chili powder, turmeric, and salt. Rub the spice mixture onto the shrimp. Set aside for 15 to 30 minutes.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Fry the shrimp in the oil until they lose their translucency, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Do not overcook.

Serve at once, garnished with the lime, cilantro leaves, and avocado.

FromThe Flavors of Asia” by Culinary Institute of America and Mai Pham