It's been a little while - life getting in the way and such. What comes with absence, is experience of a different kind. This time in the form of worldly travel, which included my personal favorite - trying new foods! Now, I'm no stranger to smoked paprika and the Spanish certainly aren't. During our week in southern Spain, we tasted many dishes with its subtle, yet evident flavor including paella and grilled pulpo (octopus tentacle). I happened upon a spice store in Seville and picked up a few grams of pimenton ahumado (a generic but still very tasty, smoked paprika). Upon further investigation, apparently the best paprika comes from the La Vera region in Spain near the Tietar River valley. If you are looking to add this spice to your collection, might I suggest investing in pimenton de la Vera - the most legit of the legit smoked paprikas.
Adding a deep, woodsy flavor to any dish, consider using in meat rubs, on scrambled eggs, or baste a turkey with it! In my case, I've altered a shrimp dish that's in the current rotation. Recipe below:
(Smoked) Paprika Spiced Shrimp with Citrus Quinoa Salad, serves 3:
1/2 cup white quinoa
1 cup filtered water
3/4 lb. wild shrimp, peeled/deveined
1 TB olive oil
1/2 TB smoked paprika
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground red pepper (cayenne)
1 1/2 TB fresh orange juice
1/2 TB raw honey
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tangerines, peeled and sectioned
1 TB chopped cilantro
1/8-1/4 cup toasted, sliced almonds
Dry toast the quinoa in your small saucepan for 5 minutes until a nutty aroma is noticed. Add the water to the pan and bring the quinoa/water to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover pan, and simmer about 13-15 minutes, or until liquid is well absorbed. Set aside.
Thread shrimp onto skewers. Brush lightly with 1/2 TB of olive oil. Then mix smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp of sea salt, and the ground red pepper in a small bowl. Coat the shrimp evenly with the seasoning. Grill shrimp on skewers for 2-4 minutes per side, or until shrimp turn pink. *Alternatively, you can saute the shrimp in a pan in the olive oil if it isn't grilling season (hint, it currently isn't).
Mix the OJ, remaining oil, honey, remaining sea salt, and black pepper in a large bowl. Add cooked quinoa, shrimp off the skewers, tangerine slices, and cilantro and toss to mix. Sprinkle with toasted almond slices and serve.
Insights and Inspirations on nutrition, food, wellness, recipes, and more! All posts by Jaime Frinak.