Being a food blogger who basically cooks and then presents her food to her family is a hard job. Oftentimes I cook the meal, grab it away from grasping fingers waiting at my table, and run it to my living room where the lighting is better and snap a photo. Then I rush it back and it is immediately devoured by family. There is no planning of photographs, no time to really try and arrange things beautifully on the plate, which is why most of my photographs are more of the "rustic looking" type. I don't often have time to take step by step photos because to demonstrate some things would require either someone modeling what I want done or a photographer to snap me as I work. Daughter #1 still is not reliable enough of a photographer, it pretty much means step by step is really hard. Sometimes I'll wear plastic gloves and take them on and off as I try and photograph what is going on in the food.
However, last week I had the ultimate luxury. I was at Mom's house and I got to photograph Mom as she worked. In addition I had some child supervision as I took food around outside trying to capture a good shot. I have to say in all honesty however, I don't know if my more "posed final photographs" from my time at Mom's are any better, but I DO know that the step-by-step was infinitely easier and more relaxing for me to snap. You, my wonderful blog readers are the beneficiary of my mother's work as I was able to snap as she worked. So if you're wondering why I have so many photographs in this post, it's because I had a chance to actually TAKE them.
This is one of my FAVORITE shrimp recipes and Mom makes it for me whenever I come home. We made this along with Asian Fish Tacos, Ginger Green Rice, and it was a hit for Brother's 36th birthday dinner.
2 lbs of jumbo shrimp, legs removed, de-veined and butterflied (see step by step photos below)
1/4 cup of butter, softened (softer the better)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup chopped red pepper (red bell pepper is fine, but if you like SPICE, use a red chili pepper)
3 tablespoons of finely chopped garlic
1 tablespoon lime juice
Sea salt and cayenne pepper(optional) for sprinkling
Arrange oven rack so that it is closest to the heating element. Preheat oven to broil. Line sheet pan with foil. Place prepared shrimp evenly so that there is only a single layer and every shrimp will get maximum heat.
In a large bowl, prepare butter mixture. Add olive oil to softened butter mixture and mix. Then add cilantro, red pepper, garlic and lime juice.
Mix until you have one consistent mixture, flecked with green and red
Carefully spoon about two teaspoons of the butter mixture on top of each shrimp.
Finish by sprinkling sea salt and cayenne pepper over each shrimp. If you are worried about the spice, omit the cayenne. Place into the preheated oven. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until shrimp is opaque and the tail tips are red. Do NOT overcook. Place shrimp onto a serving place, and drizzle with pan juices.
Serve warm. Delicious with Garlic Scallion Noodles or Ginger Green Rice.
How to butterfly shrimp. Step by step photo instructions. (this is done with shrimp from Costco, that has already been de-veined)
With a pair of kitchen shears in one hand, and the shrimp in the other, trim off the little legs.
Starting at the tail, take the blade of your knife and cut through the back of the shrimp. This is the side OPPOSITE where you cut the legs, and the SAME SIDE as where the shrimp has already been de-veined.
Run the knife all the way through, and begin opening up your shrimp.
Open the shrimp up all the way, and flatten. Note how the shrimp is split from the top of the tail. (sorry finger in the way)