Shrimps and Rice Noodles with Coconut Milk and Peanut Butter Sauce

Coconut milk and peanut butter sauce, in all kinds of variations, is one of my favorites: its velvety texture, and its wonderful flavors, ranging from savory to sweet to spicy and to slightly acidic, always work so well, especially with seafood. So, when I was about to prepare a dinner with a fairly large amount of shrimp, I’ve decided to use the sauce as a base for the dish.

As the request was for a gluten-free dish, the obvious choice for starch was to use rice noodles.  With smaller quantities, I most often use thin ones, but here I needed noodles that can keep their shape in the sauce for a longer time, so I chose wide cut thick rice noodles instead. This was a good choice, as the noodles absorbed the sauce well, and were very flavorful, yet still had a nice bite to them. The shrimps were sauteed very lightly before adding the sauce, so that they also absorbed the sauce well, and their texture was succulent and bursting with flavors.  Fresh herbs, along with a small amount of vegetables, added more flavors and aroma to the pot. Crunchy roasted spicy peanuts, scattered on top of the dish just before serving, add another layer of flavor and texture.

This free style dish, which is seasoned with ingredients from different Asian cuisines, is perfect for serving as a part of a buffet dinner, with various fresh and steamed vegetables on the side. Try it and enjoy.

Makes: 6-8

Prep time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

For the sauce:

¼ cup gluten free Tamari soy sauce

2 tsp green Thai curry paste

½ tsp Sriracha hot sauce

1 tsp lemon grass paste

1 Tbs ginger paste

1 Tbs apricot jam

1 Tbs Hoisin sauce

1 Tbs rice wine vinegar

2 Tbs creamy peanut butter

½ tsp salt

1 can (13.5 fl oz/400 grams) full fat coconut milk

For the dish:

2 lbs medium size shrimps, preferably fressh

1 cup basil leaves

1 cup cilantro leaves

3-4 scallions

1 bunch chives

4-5 mini peppers

Florets from 1 medium broccoli head

1 package (1 Lbs/454 grams) straight cut wide rice noodles

1 Tbs light sesame oil

½ cup spicy roasted peanuts

  1. Place all the ingredients for the sauce in a medium bowl. Blend with a hand blender to a smooth sauce. Set aside.
  2. Peel and devein the shrimps, leaving the tails on (for instructions on how to clean shrimps. click HERE). Place in ice water for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3. Roughly chop the basil, cilantro, scallions and chives. Clean the peppers and cut into small cubes. Lightly steam the broccoli. Set aside.
  4. Cook the noodles according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  5. Heat the oil in a wide pot, over medium-high heat. Add the shrimps, and cook for 2 minutes, mixing gently, just until they start to change color.
  6. Add the sauce, the herbs and vegetables. Mix and bring to the boil. Lower the heat to medium, and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the noodles, mix well and cook for 3-4 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Scatter the spicy peanuts on top, and serve.

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