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Feb 15, 2010

Shrimp Flambéed in Tequila

Tonight K kept asking me what I was going to do with that shrimp we bought yesterday. He seemed to be in no mood for the leftover Pork Mango Picadillo he was supposed to be eating.

So I ask him: “What do you want me to do with that shrimp?”
He says: “Mmmm… can’t you do something with shrimp and tequila?”

I first thought of marinating the shrimp in tequila with some spicy green chillies and throwing them into a very hot pan to sear. But where’s the fun in that? That’s so old-school. I was a feeling a little adventurous and instead settled on a flambé after checking online if tequila is good for flambéing. I found a recipe on a food blog that I modified for our dinner.

The one thing to remember is to keep your face away from the pan while lighting the alcohol on fire, or you will burn your eyebrows right off (and I’m not sure they grow back again;  they probably do – but why try?). So here’s my first ever Mexican-inspired dish – Shrimp Flambéed in Tequila!

Click here for printable recipe


1/2 lb shrimp (31-40/lb shrimp), shelled and deveined, tails left on
1 TBsp vegetable oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin lengthwise
3 medium (or 2 large) cloves of garlic
3 Indian/Thai green chillies, slit lengthwise
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup tequila
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1 TBsp freshly squeezed lime juice
1 TBsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 sprig of cilantro (for garnish)
1 cup cooked white rice

Add the oil to the pan and heat on medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic and the slit green chillies. Sprinkle the sugar over the onions to aid in browning. Fry for about 5 minutes. Now add the salt and fry some more, until the onions get some colour but are not yet golden.

Turn the heat up to high, wait 30 seconds and add the shrimp. Make sure each piece of shrimp is in direct contact with the pan. Fry for 1 minute and then stir, frying for another 30 seconds to a minute.

Now add the tequila and either using a long match (or use a long piece of pasta like fettuccine) or by tilting the pan to bring the vapours of the liquour in contact with the fire from the stove ignite the alcohol. The flames will rise quite high. Allow all the tequila to burn off. The flames will subside naturally.

Now reduce the heat to medium, add the cumin powder, stir, and cook until some of the sauce reduces (skip this if you want more sauce).

Turn the heat off, add the lime juice and the chopped cilantro and give the dish a final stir.

Serve with white rice garnished with a sprig of fresh cilantro leaves.


One Response to “Shrimp Flambéed in Tequila”

  1. 1

    Saby — February 16, 2010 @ 12:48 pm

    Looks tasty. Going by the recipe, it sure is. Wonder why You never were so ambitious when You were in Kolkata….

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