Spicy Fennel Ginger Shrimp

I was trying to come up with a new idea for an appetizer with shrimp. I looked through my cookbooks. No one idea seemed to appeal to me. So I took flavors from each that I enjoyed and put them together. This is what I came up with. I have decided to change the recipe a bit from what I originally created since I think it will give it a much better texture.


  • 1 1/2 lb Shrimp
  • 7 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1/2 + 1/2 inch Ginger
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro
  • 2 Tsp Cayenne Powder
  • 1 1/2 Tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 Lemon juiced
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 Tsp Tamarind Paste
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Rice Flour or Corn Starch
  • 2 Tbsp Canola oil
  • 5 Curry Leaves
  • 4 Green Chilies
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Fennel Seeds
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • Cilantro to Garnish


Clean and devein the shrimp. Pat dry. Finely chop the garlic, 1/2 inch ginger, and 1/2 cup cilantro in a food processor or with a knife. Marinate the shrimp in ginger, garlic, cilantro, cayenne powder, turmeric, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1Tbsp tamarind paste, and salt. Let sit for about 2 hours. (Here I added the rice flour with the marinade, am changing this though). Make sure the to take the shrimp out of the fridge about 20 minutes before cooking.

Slice the onions not too thin or thick. Place a large pan or skillet on medium heat and add oil. When the oil is hot add fennel seeds, curry leaves and green chillies. You can leave the chillies whole and slightly pierce them for a milder flavor or chop them fine for a spicier flavor. Slice the other 1/2 inch of ginger thinly and add to the oil. Add a pinch of salt and sauté till soft and getting a hint of brown around the edges.

While the onions are cooking, add the rice flour to the shrimp and mix well. Dust off any excess. If you don’t have rice flour corn starch will work just as well. Increase the heat to medium high and add the shrimp. Sauté shrimp well and cook for about 5 to 10 minutes till cooked through. Add the remaining tamarind paste and lemon juice. Add some cilantro and plate up.


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