Thursday, 28 June 2012

Shrimp Burgers

I am so thrilled to share this with you today!

When I first saw this recipe on Tracey's blog Tracey's Culinary Adventures, I decided at once that I needed to make them.... 

Tracey's blog is an incredible cornucopia of delicious recipes that I can't wait to try.  She's an interesting and engaging lady and I wish I could post as much as she does!  She's a machine.

You really do an incredible job Tracey!

My parents LOVE seafood and they are more than happy to eat all the seafood I can throw at them. 

Every now and then I think about making something with beef (read: elk) or chicken, just for a change - but I don't think they really care.

Back to the burgers. 

When I read the recipe, I was really surprised at how little filler there was.  I had no idea how the burgers were going to stay together.

Here's what you do.

Put torn up bread pieces into a food processor and pulse until the bread is no more and becomes coarse crumbs. 

It turns out that this is kind of what panko bread crumbs are like.

Also - I didn't believe that one slice of bread would give me 3/4 of a cup of crumbs.  So I took out three pieces.

I decided I would process each slice of bread and dump the resulting crumbs into a 3/4 cup measure until I had 3/4 cup of crumbs. 

I only needed one slice.

That'll show me for doubting Tracey!

After giving the food processor bowl a quick wipe, put the shrimp into the bowl and pulse 6 or 7 times.  You want to have both finely chopped and chunks of shrimp.

Put the shrimp and the bread crumbs into a large mixing bowl.

In a small bowl, mix mayonnaise, green onions, parsley, lemon zest, salt, pepper and cayenne until well combined.  Then add this mixture to the big bowl with the shrimp and bread crumbs.

Gently mix everything together with a spatula.

Tracey recommends putting the shrimp onto a small baking sheet before it goes into the fridge - but I decided to do something a little different.

I got out a cutting board and lined it with parchment paper.

Then I used a 1/2 cup measuring cup to portion out the shrimp mixture.  I dropped the mixture in little 1/2 cup piles on the parchment paper and then used my hands to mold the mixture into patties - a little smaller than the diameter of the buns I was using. 

This mixture isn't like making a beef burger patty because it's quite delicate - so you don't want to handle it too much.

Then I cut the parchment paper into squares around the patties so that when I came time to fry the patties up I could just flip them into the pan and then pull off the paper.

It worked REALLY REALLY well.  I would absolutely do it this way over and over.

But before the patties get fried up, they need to be covered with plastic wrap (just loosely) and put in the fridge for anywhere from 30 minutes up to 24 hours.

When it's time to fry up the patties, heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium high heat until the oil starts to shimmer.

Then flip the patties onto the the pan and peel the backing parchment paper off.  Just be careful because the hot oil WILL splash up a little bit.

Fry the patties until golden brown and crisp on both sides - about 4-5 minutes on each side (8 - 10 minutes total).

Also - the patties WILL hold together.  Don't be afraid because there's not a lot of filler - it just makes the shrimp stand out!

When I made these for a small crowd, I buttered and toasted the buns until they were golden and warm.

I served the burgers with tomato, onion, and lettuce for toppings and mayo, dijon, or ranch dressing for condiments.  I also had coleslaw and potato salad as sides.

I remember seeing a Baja Sauce for fish tacos that I think would be brilliant on these as well.

And what we thought? 

They were so unexpected and light and "bright" from the lemon zest.  They were so delicious I would make them for anyone who likes seafood.  And even though it seems a little labour intensive - it really doesn't matter because they were so worth every single bite.

My parents liked them so much that the following day, my Mom volunteered me to make them for 12 people.  12.  I kind of freaked out a little bit inside.  I've never fed that many people at one time!

Just so you all know - I did that recently and it went absolutely wonderfully.  Everyone enjoyed the food and we had a great time!

The only tiny little change I made was to reduce the lemon zest to 3/4 teaspoon - but that was just my personal preference.

Thank you so much Tracey for posting this ridiculously wonderful recipe and allowing me to share it here today!  I can't wait to try more!

This is the Cane Girl - signing off.

Shrimp Burgers
(This is the recipe with my one little change)
1 slice high quality bread, torn into 1 inch pieces (your choice - I used white bread)
1 pound extra large raw shrimp - peeled, deveined, and tails off (I used large because I couldn't find extra large)
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
3/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons canola oil
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the torn up bread until it comes to coarse crumbs (think panko crumbs).  Put the crumbs in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Wipe down the bowl of the food processor and add the shrimp.  Pulse until there's a mixture of of fine minced and chunks of shrimp - about 6 or 7 pulses.  Add the shrimp to the same bowl as the crumbs, but don't mix.
  3. In a separate smaller bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, parsley, green onions, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and cayenne using a spatula.  Mix thoroughly.
  4. Using the spatula, add the mayonnaise mixture to the shrimp and crumbs and fold everything gently until combined. 
  5. Use a 1/2 cup measuring cup to portion the shrimp mixture onto a parment like cutting board (or cookie sheet).  There should be 4 little piles of shrimp.
  6. Use your hands to shape the shrimp mixture into patties.  The patties should be about 1 inch thick (you could use a bun as reference for diameter).
  7. Cut around the parchment paper so you can easily flip the shrimp burgers into the pan.
  8. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and put in the fridge for 30 minutes (at least) or up to 24 hours.
  9. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan until the oil shimmers.
  10. Place the patties parchment side up on the preheated pan.  Remove the parchment paper backing.
  11. Fry the patties 4-5 minutes on each side until golden and crispy (about 8 - 10 minutes total).
  12. Serve warm and enjoy!
Source:  Tracey's Culinary Aventures and America's Test KitchenHealthy Family Cookbook

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