Coconut shrimp have always been one of my favorite appetizers. Whenever I see it on a menu, I can’t help but ordering them, just to see what their version is. Many times I’ve been severely disappointed. The best I’ve ever had was at Waterman’s Inn in Crisfield, Maryland. Big shrimp and copious amounts of coconut, fried to golden perfection.
So, with most of my other restaurant favorites, I came home with the resolution to make coconut shrimp at home that were just as good. That was over 3 years ago now, and the road was bumpier than I’d imagined. There were many casualties on the coconut front, but I finally got the batter down just right. The key is to do a beer batter coating on the shrimp – then roll them in the shredded coconut. Also, letting the shrimp chill for 30 minutes once coated really helped to keep the coconut on the shrimp – and not come off in the oil.
These make an impressive appetizer, as well as a delicious main course. I paired them with a tropical quinoa salad, for something on the lighter side, and it was a perfect meal!
Beer-Battered Coconut Shrimp
For beer batter:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup beer
For the shrimp:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups flaked coconut
1 pound large shrimp, peeled with tails left on and butterflied
3 cups oil for frying
In small bowl combine beer and flour. Set aside. Place the flour in a shallow dish, as well as the shredded coconut.
Hold shrimp by tail, and dredge in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in beer batter, allowing excess to drip off. Roll shrimp in coconut, and place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oil to 350 degrees F in a dutch oven or deep fryer.
Fry shrimp in batches, turning once, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove shrimp to paper towel lined cookie sheet to drain. Serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce.
Source: adapted from Allrecipes