Be careful not to overcook the shrimp or they'll be rubbery. That said, you do want the bacon to achieve a light char and crispness. Achieve this by keeping shrimp just off of direct heat. Keep the grill heat moderate, and don't walk away when cooking, because bacon fat may cause flames to ignite.
About the author: Jennifer Olvera is a veteran food and travel writer and author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Chicago." Follow her on Twitter @olverajennifer.
- Yield:serves 4
- Active time: 30 minutes
- Total time:1 hour
- For the Aji Picante Relish:
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice from about 3 limes
- 1 serrano pepper, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 1/2 cup red onion, finely diced (about 1/2 medium onion)
- For the Glaze:
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon ancho chili powder
- For the Shrimp:
- 24 raw jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined (1 to 1 1/2 pounds)
- 8 slices thick-sliced hardwood-smoked bacon, each slice cut into 3 equal pieces.
- 8 bamboo skewers soaked in water for 30 minutes, or 8 metal skewers
- 12 soft corn tortillas
- 5 ounces arugula, cleaned and dried
For the Relish: At least an hour before you’re ready to cook, place the lime juice, serrano pepper, vinegar and water in a blender and puree until smooth, about 30 seconds. Pour into a small bowl, and add the salt, sugar, vegetable oil, cilantro, parsley and red onion. Stir to combine.
For the Glaze: Combine orange juice, garlic, honey and ancho powder in a small saucepan pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer and allow to reduce slightly. Reserve.
For the Shrimp: Wrap shrimp in pre-cut pieces of bacon, and thread onto bamboo skewer so they may be placed flat on the grill. Continue the process, placing three wrapped shrimp per skewer.
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over half of coal grate, leaving an area without direct heat. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate.
Heat corn tortillas according to this method. Transfer warmed tortillas to a plate lined with a clean kitchen towel and fold kitchen towel over tortillas to keep warm.
Grill shrimp over indirect, medium-high heat until slightly charred and cooked through, about 5 minutes total, brushing with prepared sauce and flipping half-way through. Serve shrimp with warm tortillas, arugula, and ají.