I started cooking from Ruta Kahate's Quick-Fix Indian the moment I got my hands on it. I'm always looking to cook more Indian meals during the week, and this one promised that most of recipes could be cooked in a Rachel-Ray-inspired speed of 30 minutes or less.
Though I tried a few, including the very good "instant chicken biryani," this recipe for coriander shrimp with zucchini was by far my favorite. That's probably due to the good deal of spice and the healthy helping of vegetables.
Why I Picked This Recipe: Though it's called Quick-Fix Indian and many of the recipes look simple enough, most have sub recipes, which you'll need to make ahead of time. This isn't a big deal, but sometimes this can extend the cooking process to over an hour. But if you sub freshly grated ginger here for the ginger paste (which she gives as a tip), this comes together in about 20 minutes.
What Worked: I never really thought about it before, but shrimp and zucchini are an inspired pair. When cooked right, they are both tender, juicy, and slightly sweet. The spices are nice, too, adding some depth without covering up any of the fresh flavors.
Suggested Tweaks: The ingredients in the title should be flipped, because this is really more of a zucchini recipe with some shrimp. Not that I'm complaining too much. I just split this whole recipe with my wife. But if you would like to bulk the dinner out to feed four, just double the amount of shrimp, and serve with some rice.
Adapted from Ruta Kahate's Quick-Fix Indian
- Yield:serves 2 to 3
- Active time: 20 minutes
- Total time:20 minutes
- 1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric, divided
- Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
- 1 bay leaf (preferably Indian bay leaf)
- 4 small dried red chiles
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 2 pounds zucchini, chopped into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, minced
In a bowl, toss the shrimp with half of the turmeric and a pinch of salt. Set aside.
Pour two tablespoons of the oil into a large wok set over high heat. When oil just starts to smoke, add the shrimp. Stir-fry until they turn pink, about 2 minutes, remove from heat, and immediately remove them with a slotted spoon. Place them on a plate and set aside.
Pour the remaining tablespoon of oil into the wok and turn the heat to medium. Add the remaining turmeric, along with the bay leaf, chiles, cumin, coriander, and the ginger. Stir well, and cook until very fragrant, about one minute. Add the zucchini, and toss until the cubes are evenly coated in the spice mixture. Cover the wok, and cook until the pieces have softened, stirring occasionally, five to eight minutes.
Add the shrimp and the cilantro, stir well, and then turn off the heat. Divide the mixture between four plates and serve immediately with rice.