I wish I could make this recipe for my parents! Growing up, we didn't get to eat home-cooked shrimp dishes very often, but I'm sure they would have loved it!
My mom did not cook a lot of seafood when I was growing up. But I have enjoyed experimenting with all the variations on how to prepare shrimp and seafood. When I sit and enjoy these tasty creations, I often wish that I could have shared all I have learned with my mom and dad, because no matter how old we are, we all still want that “pat on the back,” job-well-done feeling. They continue to inspire me.
For the Shrimp
1lb shrimp uncooked and cleaned with tails on
1/4cup dry rub
For the Pineapple Salsa
2cups fresh pineapple finely diced
1 habanero pepper minced
1 red cherry pepper or Fresno pepper, minced (optional)
3cups white onion diced
4tablespoons rice wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
Start by prepping the shrimp. Take a couple of paper towels and press down lightly onto the shrimp to release excess moisture. Season lightly with salt, then add your dry rub, making sure all the shrimp are covered. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
For pineapple salsa, in a medium sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring so it does not burn. Add the peppers and cook for 1 more minute. Add the remaining ingredients, 1 teaspoon salt and pinch of pepper. Lower the heat and let it cook down for a few minutes. Taste for salt. Transfer to a dish and let it cool at room temperature. If not using right away, chill in the refrigerator.
To cook the shrimp, I like using a large griddle that covers both the front and back burner on the stove top. But, you could also skewer and grill the shrimp, just make sure you brush it with oil before you grill it. If cooking on the stove top, preheat the griddle to medium heat for a few minutes. Drizzle olive oil to cover evenly. Lay the shrimp, but do not overcrowd or it will steam and not blacken. Cook for just 2 minutes per side, or when the shrimp turns pink. Transfer to a bowl and cover to keep warm.
Serve as-is with lemon/lime wedges as an appetizer or with warm corn tortillas for tacos. I served it with some shredded cabbage, radishes, green onions, cilantro, and jalapeño that was lightly seasoned in a little rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper.
This recipe can be prepared in your kitchen with a large griddle for the stove top. If the weather is suitable, you can do it on an outdoor grill as well.