Island Shrimp Lettuce Cups

I know you all are dying to know about the giveaway, so let me quickly tell you about this recipe. Basically in a nut shell, there’s a cup of butter lettuce full of sweet coconut almond rice, fresh pineapple, jalapenos, cilantro, coconut & cornmeal encrusted shrimp topped with a coconut milk & lime sauce. They are sweet and savory and are sure to please everyone! My 18 month old absolutely adored the sweet rice and my husband had at least 7 of these cups. And, I’m not even joking.
About the shrimp: I marinated them for about an hour in Lime Chipotle Marinade. Man, is that stuff packed full of flavor! After I marinated them, I coated half in a cornmeal coconut mixture and kept half plain. The breaded shrimp took a nice hot bath in some canola oil and the plain shrimp were quickly seared in a hot pan with a little olive oil. Both were tasty, but we preferred the cornmeal coconut ones. Try them both out and see which you prefer!
Overall, this dinner was pretty easy to put together and absolutely perfect for summer! (Side Note: there are a lot of parts to this that you could break up over the course of your day if you’re busy! That’s what I did!)

Island Shrimp Lettuce Cups
yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:
for the shrimp-
1-1 1/4 lbs shrimp (21-25 count), peeled & deveined
1 cup Lime Chipotle Marinade
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
salt
pepper
oil of choice for frying (canola, vegetable, peanut, any light colored oil)

for the rice-
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup long grain white rice
1 1/2 cups good quality chicken stock
1 large bay leaf
salt
pepper
2 heaping tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
1/4 cup toasted sweetened shredded coconut

for the coconut lime sauce-
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon sugar
zest of 1/2 lime

1 head butter lettuce, leaves removed and washed
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1-2 cups diced fresh pineapple
1-2 fresh jalapenos, seeded & chopped
2 limes, cut into wedges

Directions:
In an air tight container, mix shrimp with Lime Chipotle Marinade. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the rice-
Preheat large pot over medium high heat. Melt butter and stir in rice to coat. Stir in salt, pepper, sugar and bay leaf. Pour stock into pot and bring to boil. Cover and reduce heat to low until rice has softened completely, 20-30 minutes. Once cooked, remove from heat, stir in almonds and coconut. Keep rice covered to stay warm until service.

To cook the shrimp without breading-
Preheat large skillet to medium high heat. Add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. Place shrimp into hot pan in one even layer. Cook about 2-3 minutes per side or until shrimp turn pink and opaque. Remove from heat and keep warm.

To cook shrimp with breading-
Preheat large deep skillet to medium high to high heat with 3/4 inch oil. In shallow dish, combine cornmeal, coconut, salt and pepper together. Dip shrimp into mixture, being sure to coat well. (The marinade acts as a really great glue for the breading so be sure to not wipe any of it off!) Place coated shrimp into hot oil and cook 2-3 minutes per side until shrimp are pink and opaque and breading is golden brown. (*You’re going to want to have the oil hot enough for the shrimp to sizzle when they hit the pan, but not so hot that they burn before they cook. You can test one shrimp at first and adjust your stove accordingly.) Remove shrimp to paper towels, sprinkle with salt and keep warm.

To make the coconut sauce-
Mix coconut milk with sugar and lime zest. That’s it!

For assembly-
Scoop desired amount of rice into bottom of a butter lettuce leaf. Top with pineapple, jalapenos, cilantro, shrimp, sauce and more lime juice if desired.

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  1. This looks fantastic. Living in the Midwest I’m always wanting to head south to the ocean and enjoy all the tropical flavors. I’m going to have to get my fix with this recipe cause I can’t head to the ocean just yet!! Thank you!!

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