So here’s the thing. I’m a wimp when it comes to seafood, especially when it comes to looking into a dead shrimp’s cold glassy eyes. Unfortunately for me, this month’s Fish Friday Foodies theme is “Whole Fish or Seafoods” chosen by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla. I don’t think I need to tell you that I am not Camilla’s biggest fan this month. As far as I am concerned, fish should come with their heads already off, because there are people in this world that do that for a living, and I am not one of them. I am a girl who rarely eats any meat with a bone in it, and if by chance it should have one, I must take all the meat off at once, throw the bone or bones away, and then go to another room to actually eat the meat. I think it’s fair to say I have issues.
You would think that a girl born on butchering day and well used to the sight of pigs being slaughtered, would have no issue with a few dead shrimp with their heads on. You would be wrong. At first I naively fooled myself into thinking that I could grill a whole fish without any hesitation. Just a hint folks; you should never try to fool yourself, because it won’t work. By now you can quickly guess what happened as I stood in front of the seafood department of my local market, staring at a fish who was staring right back at me out of its’ cold glassy eye. That’s right, I turned around and headed right out of that market, but not without first buying lemons and tonic water, because I was going to need a vodka tonic before this little adventure in seafood was over.
It was time for Plan B, which involved a trip to our local ethnic market, a place that continuously baffles me and on occasion truly grosses me out. First off, the shrimp are on display in two open cases; one case with the heads on, and the other with the heads off. There is a slotted spoon in each case. Next to all of this is the produce department. Fish next to fresh fruits and vegetables. Brilliant idea. Not. Am I the only one that has a problem with this scenario? Anyway back to the shrimp. You must get a bag from the produce aisle to put your own shrimp into. That’s right folks; you’re going to be bagging these little alien creatures of the sea up all by yourself at the ethnic market.
Picture if you will the following scene. I grab one flimsy plastic bag and open it, then grab another overly thin plastic bag and open it, placing the one inadequate bag inside of the other. Just to be on the safe side, I repeat this two more times. I will gladly pay an extra few cents for the weight of the skimpy bags I am using if it means that I don’t have to feel actual shrimp heads against my skin. Since I also have no idea where the slotted spoon in the shrimp has been, or when the last time it was cleaned in this century was, I also place two bags over my scooping hand. I’m pretty sure that during this “procedure,” I was safer than most doctors are when they are gloved for surgery. In case you are wondering, I did not look around me to see how those among me perceived my actions. Safety first.
After coming home with the shrimp, things went much smoother. Anything is possible when you have a spatula or a pair of tongs in your hand. As long as I didn’t have to physically touch the shrimp with their disgusting antennae, I would survive this entire ordeal. I was feeling brave. I had this shit. I would live through this Fish Friday Foodies challenge from Camilla, and laugh in the general direction of anyone who dared to assume my failure. I would also have the luxury of pulling out my super secret weapon after grilling the shrimp, one that I keep for very special occasions only; B.O.B. Bob, otherwise know as the beheader of shrimp. Sometimes you have to admit that there are things in this life that other people are better at than you. When it comes to “offing” the heads of shrimp, Bob knows his shit, and I bow to his superiority.
- 1 Pound Shrimp
- 1 Cup Flat Leaf Parsley (1 Bunch Flat Leaf Parsley)
- 4 Whole Garlic Cloves
- 1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano
- 1 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 3 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
- Juice of 1 Sweet Lemon
- 1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Turn grill onto medium-heat.
- Place the shrimp in a large bowl; set aside.
- Place all other ingredients, except for the olive oil, in a food processor, and process for 30 seconds.
- Slowly pour the olive oil into the food processor while it is running, and process for another 30 seconds.
- Pour 1/2-cup of the chimichurri sauce over the shrimp, and then use a spatula to mix the shrimp until they are all well coated.
- Allow the shrimp to sit for 15 minutes.
- Grill the shrimp for a few minutes on each side, or until thoroughly cooked.
- Grill half of the shrimp at a time, so that you can give them your full attention and prevent overcooking.
- Dump the cooked shrimp onto several layers of newspaper to serve.
- Have the love of your life behead all of the shrimp for you, because you’re a wimp and you’re proud of it.
- Use the remaining chimichurri sauce as a dipping sauce for either the shrimp or slices of grilled bread. Any leftover sauce will keep in your refrigerator for a few days in an airtight container. It’s good on just about everything, and I do mean everything.
- I think it goes without saying that I recommend using shrimp with their heads off, because it’s just so much easier and much less icky.
- Squeeze fresh sweet lemon juice over the shrimp before serving.
- Add 1-teaspoon of Homemade Taco Seasoning to the chimichurri.
Come Join Us in the Kitchen!
Subscribe to Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck Survive Despite a Whiskered Accomplice to receive exclusive recipes, newsletters, and special updates.