Salt-cured Ouzo Shrimp

Photo: Sunset

Another secret to perfectly grilled shrimp: Rub them with salt and sugar before cooking to seal in their juiciness and sweetness. We love the shrimp with a two-punch licorice hit of anise seeds and ouzo. Prep and Cook Time: 15 minutes, plus 45 to 60 minutes for salt-curing.

Yield: Makes 6 servings
Total:
Recipe from Sunset

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Recipe Time

Total: 1 Hour, 15 Minutes

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 150
  • Calories from fat: 26%
  • Protein: 23g
  • Fat: 4.3g
  • Saturated fat: 0.7g
  • Carbohydrate: 3.3g
  • Fiber: 0.0g
  • Cholesterol: 173mg

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp (16 to 20 per lb.), peeled, deveined, and with tails on
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • About 2 tbsp. ouzo or other anise-flavored liqueur
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic

Preparation

  1. 1. In a bowl, mix sugar, salt, and 3/4 tsp. anise seeds. Add shrimp and stir gently to coat. Cover and chill 45 minutes to 1 hour. Rinse both the shrimp and the bowl well and drain.
  2. 2. Meanwhile, soak 6 wooden skewers at least 30 minutes, or use metal skewers (no need to soak).
  3. 3. Return shrimp to bowl. Add remaining 3/4 tsp. anise seeds, the olive oil, 2 tbsp. ouzo, and the garlic; mix to coat. Thread shrimp onto skewers through each end so they look like the letter C, dividing them equally among skewers.
  4. 4. Prepare a charcoal or gas grill for high heat (450° to 550°; you can hold your hand 5 in. above cooking grate only 2 to 4 seconds).
  5. 5. Lay shrimp on cooking grate and cook, turning once, until shrimp are bright pink and opaque but still moist-looking in center (cut to test), 2 to 3 minutes total. Transfer to a platter. Drizzle more ouzo over shrimp if you like.
  6. Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.
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