Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Sweet And Spicy: Baked Coconut Shrimp With Marmalade Dipping Sauce

I use the Google Bookmarks website for all of my online bookmarks, I don't depend on the browser itself to store my bookmarks because I use so many different devices (work computer, home computer, iPhone, iPad) that I wouldn't be able to transfer them or keep them up to date.  So I use the online service and it's great.  One great feature is that instead of filing a bookmark in a single folder, you can give each one multiple tags.  My general tagging concept for recipes is the protein (beef, chicken, shrimp, vegetarian, etc.), type of dish (main dish, appetizer/snack, dessert, breakfast, etc.), and then an extra tag if it's a light/healthy/low-calorie recipe.  For my weekly meal planning, I check the freezer inventory for the available proteins and then browse my recipes for that protein.  So a few weeks ago I looked through my shrimp recipes and found this recipe for baked coconut shrimp.  Once I rediscovered it, I decided I had to use up the partial bag of shrimp (half a pound) for this and I wouldn't be swayed.  I have liked coconut shrimp in the past, but haven't had it in a long time, so I really wanted to try it. 


You could easily make this gluten-free by using a gluten-free flour for your first breading station.  

Even though I was making only half a batch, I made the full amount of the breading ingredients because I hate running out in the middle of breading and needing to make more while you've got goopy hands.  The only thing I didn't use the full amount on was the coconut because I only had a little bit in the freezer.


serves 2
  • 1/2 pound large shrimp (I buy the Target Market Pantry 41/50 count per pound tail-off, peeled, and deveined)
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

I only had about half a cup of shredded coconut, but I thought it was fine for the half batch and I even had a tiny bit leftover at the end (which promptly went in the trash!). 


I started by brining my defrosted shrimp to marinade them.  Mix together 1 tablespoon of salt with 1/2 pound of shrimp and cover with water (double the amount of salt for a full pound of shrimp).  Let sit for 30 minutes.  Drain and rinse and dry them off a bit by scooping them out onto a couple sheets of paper towel.  

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (not sure it's necessary but it certainly couldn't hurt.)

The breading process.
Meanwhile, mix together the flour, paprika, and garlic powder in one bowl. 

Crack the eggs and put them in another bowl.  Beat with a fork until yellow.

Mix the coconut and salt together in yet another bowl. 

Individually dip each shrimp in the flour mixture, then the beaten eggs, and then dip in the coconut.  Place on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Serve with the dipping sauce. 
Baked coconut shrimp.


Spicy-Sweet Dipping Sauce

For the sauce I looked at a variety of different recipes but I either didn't have all the ingredients or didn't think it was what we were looking for, so I made up my own sauce based on some ideas I saw.  I started by grabbing the new jar of marmalade from the pantry and pulling out all of our spicy condiments from the fridge.  I immediately nixed the Mexican hot sauces, they had too much vinegar. I settled on chili garlic sauce. 
sauce ingredients - chili garlic sauce and orange marmalade. 
other contenders in the background.
I mixed together 2 Tablespoons orange marmalade with 1 Tablespoon chili garlic sauce.  This was the perfect amount for our half pound of shrimp, but if you were making a full batch, I would double the sauce. 
spicy-sweet dipping sauce.

Milder Version
It was pretty spicy, so if you want a milder sauce, go with 3 Tablespoons marmalade and 1/2 tablespoon chili garlic sauce. Or if you're really wussy, try 3 Tablespoons marmalade with 1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce. 


This dish was a little sweeter than I'm used to, but that was because of the dipping sauce.  It was quite good though!  Maybe next time I would add some Dijon mustard to the sauce and reduce the amount of marmalade to get a less-sweet sauce. 

The recipe wasn't too fussy, so you could make this dish as an appetizer for a small dinner party. 

The shrimp weren't exactly crunchy by the end of dinner, so next time I would use half coconut flakes and half panko breadcrumbs for the final breading to ensure it was extra crunchy.  Also the coconut could have been more toasted but I didn't want to bake the shrimp any longer or they might get overcooked.  So I would toast the coconut a tiny bit first, maybe for 3-4 minutes in the oven or until it's barely light golden colored before mixing it in the breading bowl.   

I also felt like there could have been more spice on the shrimp themselves but I'm not sure what, maybe some Old Bay seasoning in the flour mixture?  I don't have any of that but I've been looking to get some.  I actually have no idea what it even tastes like. 

Husband Jeff wasn't really into the whole coconut shrimp idea, but said I could make it anyway.  I'm glad he indulges my cooking plans. He loved the sauce a lot.  It would probably be really good as a spicy-sweet glaze for grilled chicken legs. 

Sonny D had fish sticks for dinner because he hasn't been interested in shrimp in the past.  He wouldn't even try the shrimp. He would have probably enjoyed the sweet sauce but it would have definitely been too hot for him.

Wanna Chat?

I turned off the 'leave a comment' feature, so if you want to share what you're thinking about this or anything else, drop me an email at jhk1013 (at) It's so much more cozy than a comment, plus we can have a real conversation!