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HAM AND SHRIMP CURRY

March 5, 2012 10:34 pm 0 comments

Ham and Shrimp curry is a unique and delicately cooked with lightly smoked ham, a variety of colorful vegetables using scallion or green onion, bell peppers, jalapenos flavored with garlic combined with shrimp to make a gourmet delight.

Hams are unique, frivolously smoked aroma and mellow, lightly salted taste unlike anything else and are a true connoisseur’s delicacy. Traditionally ham is cured naturally; rendering the ham to give that exclusive flavor and aroma. The mix of smoked ham and shrimp cooked together is a refreshing and blissful dish that makes magic together. It is a great family dish that goes well with rice.

While buying ham, use either fresh, cured or smoked. The usual color for cured ham is deep rose or pink and fresh ham has a pale pink or beige color while country hams and prosciutto (which are dry cured) range from pink to mahogany color. Generally many prefer smoked ham for its incredible smoky flavor. Smoking is a process by which ham is hung in a smokehouse and allowed to absorb smoke from smoldering fires. This gives added flavor and color to meat and slows the development of rancidity.

Ham and Shrimp curry is an exceptional recipe, not to spicy, give a nice smoky flavor, smooth, creamy, excellent texture spiced with Cajun seasoning, cayenne and pepper. Cajun seasoning is a remarkable mix of ingredients used as seasoning in many recipes. It is a spicy combination made with salt, cayenne pepper, black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder, thyme, sweet basil and bay leaf. There are many brands of readymade Cajun seasoning available in super markets.

Shrimps are delicate and are huge in their appeal as they are deliciously clean and crisp tasting that can be served hot or cold. They are the most popular seafood in the world and we are able to enjoy fresh and frozen shrimp throughout the year. They are a wonderfully nutritious alternative to meat proteins, are firm, translucent and low in calories and saturated fat. There are a variety of delicious recipes that one can prepare with Shrimp like Goan Shrimp Curry, Spicy Coconut Shrimp Curry, Prawn Malai curry, Prawn pulao and Shrimp Prawn pickle.

To prepare this recipe, firstly prep all the vegetables. Cut them into small equal sized dices. You can use about 4 green onions (the light parts), ½ cup small diced celery, 1 red bell pepper, 1 large jalepeno, 2 cloves minced garlic.

In a deep frying pan or sauce pan, melt about 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat and when it gets hot, add 6 ounces of smoked ham (cut into small dices). Cook them nicely for about 5 to 6 minutes till you get a nice delicious aroma and the ham gets slightly browned. Do not burn them or over brown them. Now add the vegetables dices and fry thoroughly the veggies in the hammy butter on medium high heat and then add 2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning, mix well and cook for a minute. Add 3 tablespoons of flour which will help in making a smooth roux and cook for 3 minutes stirring continuously. Do not burn the flour. Add 3 ½ cup ice cold chicken broth and mix well to a smooth consistency without lumps. Add ¼ tsp Worcestershire sauce and mix well.

Raise the heat to medium high and cook for about 10 -15 minutes. Do not skim the butter. Cook well until the vegetable are soften. Turn the heat to medium low and add 1 pound small frozen raw peeled and deveined shrimp. Give it a stir and add seasoning with cayenne and salt to taste and garnish with some chopped green onions and serve with rice or mashed potatoes.

Shrimp is an excellent source of protein and selenium. It is also a very good source of vitamin B12 and a good source of iron, phosphorus, omega-3 fatty acids, niacin, zinc, copper and magnesium.

Do try this variation and enjoy its mixed flavors. Enjoy Cooking!

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