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A woman displaying Texas shrimp kisses arranged attractively on a plate

 

When I was 22 , I moved to Galveston Island and spent my summer bartending on the beach where I met a man that would one day become my husband. 🙂 

We spent that month eating and drinking in every Irish Pub, Fish Shack, and Seafood House on the Island, becoming Islanders the only way we knew how. Through food.

We fell in love with Galveston’s signature dish, Shrimp Kisses. (And we fell in love with each other, too!) You guys gotta try em’!

They are basically a shrimp enbrochette­ – a bacon wrapped shrimp stuffed with creamy cheese, jalapeno or crab, and personalized by each chef with an original sauce.

 

Texas Shrimp Kisses with pineapple sauce close up

From bourbon glazes to barbecue drizzles, every restaurant on the Island has a different twist on the recipe. So, I made my own!

To complement the velvety cream cheese filling, I pair the shrimp with a sweet caramelized pineapple sauce. The caramelization adds complexity to the flavor, and the pineapple makes you feel like you are on the Island enjoying a daiquiri. A dusting of chipotle powder adds a bit of heat and a whisper of smoke. It’s the perfect coastal Texas dish!

Here is the recipe for the Galveston Shrimp Kisses with Caramelized Pineapple Sauce!

(If you make it, tag me on social media! I wanna see!)

(Check out the video for a complete tutorial on sealing the shrimp kisses— it will work with any stuffed shrimp recipe you want to try!)

 

Ingredients

18 XL Raw Gulf Shrimp, preferably local and brought in that day

1 pack of center cut bacon

1 Liter of canola oil for filling a cast iron skillet and frying

A box of toothpicks

Filling:

1 8 oz. Package cream cheese (room temp)

2 Green onions, sliced razor thin, the green and white parts

1 c. Cheddar (About a 4 oz. block)

1 c. Monterey jack (about a 4 oz. block)

Note: This cheese should be purchased in the block and grated on a grater.

10 chunks of pineapple cut into about 1”X1” cubes (Pre-cut fresh pineapple at the store from the produce section is fine. Avoid the canned pineapple)

1/4 c. butter

1/4 c. cream

Squeeze of lemon

Garnish:

Chipotle Chile Powder (Optional)

Cilantro

Instructions

Peel all of the raw shrimp. One at a time, use a sharp paring knife to slice half way through the shrimp, butterflying it through the belly side, and creating a place to stuff with the cheese filling. Do not cut all the way through the shrimp, only butterfly it. The shrimp should open up slightly, like a book. (The shrimp can be butterflied through the back, but the stuffing holds up better when it is cradled inside the shrimp by butterflying it through the belly.)

Make the filling by grating the cheese, and adding it to a bowl with the sliced green onions, and the room-temp cream cheese (microwave in 10 second bursts if you need to soften it) mash it with a fork mixing it all together until you get a mixture that you can make soft cheese balls from.

Open and lay out your bacon in front of you. Scoop up a small ball of cheese and roll it in your palm (about 1/2" diameter). Take a shrimp and the cheese ball and push the cheese into the butter flied belly. Mash it gently into the opening so that it fills up the space.

Take your bacon and holding the shrimp in 1 hand, wrap the bacon around the shrimp starting at the top and wrapping over and over towards the bottom until you have covered the cheese and shrimp, secure with toothpicks. The shrimp and cheese should be fully encased in bacon.

Repeat with the remaining shrimp. When they're all done, place them in the freezer where they won't get smashed. We just want to chill and firm them up since they have been melting in your warm hands. Freeze 30 min while you complete the pineapple sauce.

For the pineapple: Take the chunks and place them on a foil lined baking sheet. Spray them with a little cooking spray or oil. Place them in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until brown. Try not to let many black areas develop. Brown is good, black is burnt! You can also use your oven’s broiler but I would not recommend walking away from them. I would stand and watch as the color develops because it tends to happen very quickly.

Take the brown pineapple pieces and place them in a blender. Blend them into a puree, adding a little water if necessary. Place the puree in a saucepan and add the 1/4 c. butter, a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon. Let the butter melt and stir in the cream. Heat the mixture gradually until it comes to a boil. Let simmer just until it thickens slightly. Taste and add additional salt or lemon juice if necessary. Keep warm while you cook the shrimp.

Heat a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat and fill it half of the way up with canola oil. Heat oil to about 385 degrees. Place 2-4 freezer-chilled shrimp at a time into the hot oil and let them fry until the bacon is crisp and the cheese inside is hot and melty. Dry them off on a cooling rack or on paper towels. Remove the toothpicks before serving.

To plate, place a bit of sauce on a plate, top with the shrimp, and sprinkle with cilantro and chipotle pepper powder.

Notes

Pro Tip: It’s important to use center cut bacon in this dish to insure full even coverage of the shrimp. Bargain bacon is mostly fat and will melt off and into the grease allowing the cheese to melt out.

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https://urbancowgirllife.com/galveston-shrimp-kisses-with-caramelized-pineapple-coulis/

Shrimp Kisses with Caramelized Pineapple Sauce

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