Let me preface this by saying, I have very high expectations for restaurant meals, cause I get pretty good ones at home. Here in the Knoxville area, there is a local restaurant that has become a local chain named Puleo’s Grill and after the funeral for Bev’s mom, that’s where she wanted to go, and like many places, sometimes you get a great meal and sometimes not. I had their seafood sampler and it was average from a fish standpoint, then my baked potato was cold and the pasta alfredo side had a flavor I didn’t care for. I had Bev’s leftover shrimp and grits for lunch the next day and really liked them. The one part of the original meal I thought was outstanding was the deep fried asparagus as it had the right spices and a great crispiness. I thought if only I could replicate the outside, with some really good, fresh asparagus on the inside, it would be awesome.
So for dinner, it was to be coconut shrimp, deep-fried asparagus, grilled sweet potato and three bean salad. The coconut shrimp recipe came from a friend of a friend of a relative of a friend in Texas and is as follows as we made it (I increased it for the larger amount of shrimp we cooked).
6 jumbo or colossal shrimp, butterflied
1 cup shredded coconut
¼ cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 cup all purpose flour
S&P to taste
1 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp garlic powder
¼ cup coconut milk
½ cup liquid egg
Mix together flour, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder and put in a plastic bag (I used a gallon). You can also just dredge in the mix in a bowl.
Mix together coconut milk and egg.
Mix together panko, coconut and parsley.
Shake shrimp in bag to coat, dip in egg mixture, roll in coconut mix.
Deep-fry in 365* oil until golden brown – just a couple of minutes.
For the asparagus, I did a little research and found that most recipes contain celery salt and Puleo’s had a little heat, so this is what we did. We used a doctored version of the beer batter recipe from our neighbor, so it was:
1 cup self rising flour
1 beaten egg
1 tsp salt
¾ tsp celery salt
½ tsp cayenne
About ¾ can of beer (adjust to get the batter thickness you want)
Panko bread crumbs as needed
Make up the batter and coat each spear then roll in Panko and deep-fry at 365* until golden brown.
Here’s the result.
For the potatoes, I just parboiled them until tender, coated with olive oil, sprinkled with S&P and grilled – added a little butter on top just before removal. I’m not a big fan of coconut shrimp but they were good and those that are fans thought they were delicious. Bev said this was a keeper recipe - the coconut milk assured the flavor came through, but heavy cream can be substituted if its too much. The asparagus turned out good with a creamy but still a little snap center and a crispy coating. I didn’t achieve the spice level I was looking for however, so I still like Puleo’s better and will have to continue improving – all suggestions appreciated. The other thing I should have done was whip up a couple of dunking sauces for the shrimp and asparagus – I thought about it half way through the meal. I’m not usually a big fan of the bean salad, but I really enjoyed this one – even had seconds.
3 Bean Salad With Tangy Dressing.
From our good friend Nancy Cardwell
• 1 can (15 to 16 ounces) cut green beans, drained
• 1 can (15 to 16 ounces) cut yellow beans, drained
• 1 can (about 16 ounces) red kidney beans, drained
• 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
• 1 cup sliced purple onion
Mix separately and micro 1 min if using sugar (Bev used Splenda)
• 1/2 cup cider vinegar
• 1/3 cup vegetable oil
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon pepper
Mix everything together. Bev also added a can of chick peas, so I guess it was four bean salad.
All-in-all I'd have to say good meal and with a liitle more work on the asparagus and some sauces, I'd serve it to company.
Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.