I got this guajillo chile salsa recipe from chef Eric Fischer at Altamar restaurant. I decided to alter the recipe a little by using orange juice in place of white wine, and then I brushed these beautiful fresh prawns with it and grilled them. Freshness is so important with seafood, as is grilling only enough to cook it. Previously frozen prawns have a tougher texture, and overcooking also makes them tough. That said, even at the fish counter the prawns may just be thawed after being previously frozen, so buy what you can.
This recipe makes enough salsa to keep in the fridge for a few weeks and use for other purposes, like grilling meats, or topping tacos or empanadas. It’s not very spicy hot, but full of flavour, so if you like it really hot you’ll want to add a bit of hot sauce.
What you need:
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
- salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 2 dried guajillo chili peppers, cut into strips
- 1/4 cup parsley finely chopped
- fresh prawns, shells removed but tails remaining
What you do:
- Chop the garlic rather than using a garlic press; the press just makes it mushy.
- Heat the olive oil to medium high in a frying pan, then add the garlic. Stir the garlic around so it doesn’t burn, and add a big pinch each of salt and pepper. When it starts to just get brown around the edges, add the orange juice. Add the chili strips along with their seeds. Let this simmer for a few minutes.
- Remove the frying pan from the heat and put the salsa into a blender with the parsley, or use an immersion blender, as I did. Taste and see if you think it needs more salt.
- Heat the grill to medium.
- Skewer the prawns. I like to skewer each one through two parts, as you can see in the picture, so they don’t move around when I flip them.
- Brush some salsa on each prawn. Make sure the rest of your meal is ready to go before you grill these, because they will be done quickly, and you want to eat them right away.
- Grill the prawns briefly on each side. You will know they are done when they change colour from grey to salmon-coloured (depending on the type of prawns you are using). Remove from the grill immediately after they change colour, and serve.
I served mine with a lightly dressed salad.