Have you ever heard the saying “you eat with your eyes?” It’s so true. If I get a new cookbook or cooking magazine, I flip through it first and mark off the yummy looking pictures. THEN I’ll go back through and actually read what some of it was. Case in point: I just checked out a diabetic cookbook from the library (I hear it’s a good diet) and after flipping through it I decided to cook sweet and sour shrimp.
I’ve never had sweet and sour shrimp (or chicken or pork). I have no idea how this rates with restaurant-style meals but I do know this: it was damn good. I’m trying really hard to stick to my portions and my willpower was definitely put to the test with this recipe. My husband really liked it too, he said he might actually like it better than what he has had in our local restaurants. The recipe called for leaving the end tail on the shrimp, I’d go ahead and remove it though because it was kind of a pain in the butt to have to keep removing them while eating.
Sweet and Sour Shrimp
Recipe from Antony Worrall Thompsons The Essential Diabetes Cookbook
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp salt
1 lb raw shrimp, head and shells removed
2 green onions, finely sliced at an angle
1 white onion, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 green bell pepper, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 (8 oz) can water chesnuts, drained and sliced (I didn’t add these)
1 (8 oz) can pineapple pieces, drained (save juice)
steamed rice for serving
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and grated
1 fresh red chili, seeded and finely chopped (I used red pepper flakes, to taste)
1/2 cup pineapple juice (from what you drained)
1 tbsp soy sauce (I used Tabasco brand, it’s great!)
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp tomato paste
1 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp sugar or low-calorie sweetener (I used 3/4 tbsp splenda and 1/4 tbsp sugar)
1 tbsp cornstarch mixed to a paste with 3 tbsp cold water (this did not equal paste for me, it was very liquid, but it worked)
Mix the shrimp together in a bowl with the lemon juice and salt. Allow it to marinate on the side for a little while.
For the sauce, cook the ginger, garlic and chili (flakes) then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the remaining sauce ingredients except for the cornstarch paste and bring to a boil. Cook for three minutes.
While that’s cooking, in a large pan cook the onions, carrots and pepper until tender. Mix in the water chesnuts (optional) and pineapple pieces and cook long enough for it to heat through. Add the shrimp and cook until pink.
Add the cooked sauce to the shrimp and veggie mixture then add the cornstarch paste. Stir and cook about two minutes until thickened and glossy. Serve with steamed rice.
If low-cal sweetener is used:
Energy: 174 calories; protein: 18.3 g; Fat: 1.1 g; Saturated fat: 0.2 g; Carbohydrate: 24.4 g; Total Sugars: 18.2 g; Fiber: 2.5 g; Salt: 1.99 g; Sodium: 783 mg
If sugar is used:
Energy: 188 calories; Protein: 18.3 g; Fat: 1.1 g; Saturated Fat: 0.2 g; Carbohydrate: 28.2 g; Total Sugars: 22.0 g; Fiber: 2.5 g; Salt: 1.99 g; Sodium: 784 mg