Andrea Nguyen of Viet World Kitchen has brought authentic Asian cooking into our homes and kitchens and made Vietnamese cuisine part of our weekly repertoire. My friend Beverly took one of Andrea’s online cooking classes and shared this recipe for shrimp in coconut caramel sauce with me.
Chef Andrea Nguyen writes cooking articles for magazines and newspapers. Her work has appeared in publications such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, Sunset, Bon Appetit, EatingWell, Cooking Light, and Saveur.
Andrea has appeared on both local and national TV and radio including NPR’s Splendid Table, Martha Stewart Living’s Everyday Food, and KCRW’s Good Food.
She teaches classes both online through Craftsy and in person. General information about cooking classes can be found on her website.
The shrimp in coconut caramel sauce uses a unique technique to make a caramel sauce. The sauce is cooked until almost burnt and black and then coconut water and fish sauce are added resulting in an addictive yet sweet and savory sauce. The deep dark caramel sauce gives the shrimp a beautiful mahogany color and a rich flavor.
This recipe is best when prepared with large or even jumbo shrimp. Peel and devein the shrimp before cooking.
Begin by making the caramel sauce and setting it aside. Follow these directions carefully to make the most authentic Vietnamese-style sauce. This recipe will make more caramel sauce than needed. You can save the sauce in the fridge and add it to other marinades or recipes to achieve this beautiful mahogany color when needed.
The garlic and ginger are sautéed briefly. Once those cook for 5 minutes or so, the coconut caramel sauce is added and all ingredients are combined and reduced. The shrimp are added at the end and cooked until pink and firm.
Garnish the shrimp with sliced green onions. Serve over rice.
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