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Grilled shrimp with gochujang is a five-ingredient, 30-minute meal

by ballyhooglobal.com
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Sometimes, developing recipes takes a lot of work. When coming up with my take on widely known and well-loved dishes, such as Spaghetti Aglio e Olio or Italian Beef Sandwiches, I do lots of research before I ever head into the kitchen to test (and sometimes retest) recipes. Other times, I have a clear vision in my head and everything just falls into place. That’s the case with these Grilled Shrimp With Gochujang and Honey.

In those cases, the hard part comes when I sit to write this column each week, trying to come up with something informative and insightful to say. There is no lengthy origin story with which to regale you. There aren’t any personal memories or anecdotes to share. I often find myself racking my brain, grasping for the words to convince you that this dish is worthy of your time, money and effort. I’m tempted to type, “It’s good — trust me!” and call it a day.

Get the recipe: Grilled Shrimp With Gochujang and Honey

Then I remember that many of you do. I recall the emails and comments you share about how much your family loves a recipe of mine, how I taught you something useful or how I was able to bring back a fond memory. It’s easy to get stuck in my own head, as that’s where I’m needed to dream up ideas. But hearing from readers helps bring me back to the real world in that I’m able to impact so many lives — even if it’s about something as small as what to make for dinner one night.

For tonight, let dinner start by grabbing a jar or tub of gochujang. The Korean fermented soybean and chile pepper paste had been on my mind ever since I wrote about it at the beginning of the year. Full of funk, salt, umami and spice with just a hint of sweetness, gochujang is a marvelously complex ingredient that can serve as a flavor bomb. As such, you don’t need much else to end up with a delicious dish whenever it’s around. In this case, five ingredients total, three of which are in the recipe’s name, will do the trick.

Honey combines with the gochujang to play into the spicy-sweet flavor combo, and oil adjusts the consistency. This quick concoction would work great with just about any protein, but a seafood craving led me to shrimp.

When grilling, opt for larger shrimp, because they can better withstand the heat and are less likely to overcook. Buying them peeled and deveined is a great time saver, but purchasing them with the shell on is an easy way to know your shrimp are free of sodium tripolyphosphate, which causes them to absorb water and thus can affect their texture and how they cook. Plus, you can save the shells to make shrimp stock.

After you toss them in the gochujang-honey mixture, thread the shrimp on skewers and throw them on a grill pan or outside on the grill. (Skewers aren’t necessary for grill pans because there’s no grate for the shrimp to fall through, but I still recommend using them to make it easier to flip the crustaceans.) A squeeze of fresh lime juice as they’re hot off the grill serves as the finishing touch.

Succulent shrimp, complex spice, floral sweetness and fruity acidity. This recipe proves that you can achieve big flavor with just a handful of ingredients. It’s good — trust me!

Get the recipe: Grilled Shrimp With Gochujang and Honey

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