Cheese and seafood are not two things I often think of in conjunction with one another. It wasn't until I made shrimp stuffed with jack cheese that I realized a little bit of melted, creamy cheese can be a boon rather than turn off.
I enjoyed those shrimp so much that I modeled this recipe after them, simply switching up the ingredients from a Tex-Mex influence to an Italian one. Large shrimp, split at the base, are stuffed with a small slice of mozzarella and wrapped closed by a large basil leaf and a slice of prosciutto.
While my taste for Tex-Mex will probably always make my first incarnation of stuffed and wrapped shrimp my favorite, I can't deny that this was pretty awesome as well. Mozzarella didn't do much for flavor, but its oozing richness was a great foil for the fresh basil, salty prosciutto, and tender shrimp. A final brushing with lemon butter gave the shrimp a brightness that rounded out the whole package, and the cheese and seafood came together with some extra-tasty results.
- 2 pounds large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and rinsed
- 2/3 pound thinly sliced prosciutto
- 2 ounces low moisture mozzarella, cut into thin strips
- Around 20 large basil leaves
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice from 1 lemon
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Type of fire: Direct
- Grill heat: medium-high
Working with one shrimp at a time, make a slit about 3/4-inch long as base of shrimp. Place one slice of mozzarella in cut slit, then wrap base of shrimp with a basil leaf, followed by a slice of prosciutto. Repeat with rest of shrimp.
In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter, lemon juice, and black pepper to taste.
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over entire surface of coal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Grill shrimp over high heat until prosciutto crisps and shrimp just cook through, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove to a platter and brush with lemon butter. Serve immediately.