Prawn Po Boyz

Evening Upper East Sliders…

An extended weekend spent soaking up the sun sea-side got me dreaming of savory seafood. And from the second we got back to the steamy city, shrimp’n has been on my mind.

I wanted something sweet, spicy and smothered with a special sauce. These Summer Solstice Shrimp Sliders achieve just that and more…

The shrimp is coated in a crispy corn meal crust made from my go-to gluten free batter. To keep this Upper East Slider gluten-free friendly, use gluten-free challah rolls. I order mine from Katz’s gluten-free bakery.

Quickly sear the roll on a hot grill, spoon on a healthy amount of special sauce, and top with a fresh fennel and sesame seed slaw. Add the shrimp and a dollop of chorizo-pineapple hot sauce and you’re well on your way to a simply spectacular summer!

Prawn Po Boyz
Serves 4

4 gluten free challah rolls

16 prawns or full size shrimp, peeled and deveined (tail off)

Gluten Free Cornmeal Crust
1/2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek
1/2 garlic powder

1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/3 cup soda seltzer water
1/3 buttermilk
2 eggs

1 1/2 cups cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
salt and pepper

canola oil

Spicy Capper Special Sauce
3/4 cup homemade mayo (or light store bought)
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1/3 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/3 teaspoon garlic powder
1-2 teaspoons capers
1/2 teaspoon sweet relish
salt and pepper

Fennel Slaw
2 fennel bulbs, julienned
1 yellow, 1 red, 1 green (or any tri color peppers), julienned
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon white sesame seeds
canola oil
apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper

8 small sprigs fennel frawn (washed and dried)

1/2 chorizo sausage, diced
2 tablespoon diced pineapple
hot sauce

1. Make the slaw by combining all ingredients coating with canola oil and about 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar. Season well with salt and a touch of pepper. Let stand and marinate covered in the fridge to soften and combine flavors.

2. Make the Special sauce by combining all ingredients with a spatula. Cover and keep in the fridge.
3. Make the batter by combining all dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Beat the eggs and pour into the center of the dry ingredients. Add the seltzer water and buttermilk to the center as well and mix gently with a whisk just to combine the batter but do not over mix as you will activate the baking soda.

4. Lightly season the prawns, or shrimp, with salt and pepper. Pour cornmeal in a shallow plate, and add seasoning. Dip the shrimp into the batter then coat with cornmeal. Repeat for all shrimp.
5. Add canola to a deep frying pan or crock pot so that there is about 3/4 of an inch high of oil. Heat on high-medium high heat till oil is shimmering. Drop a small dollop of batter into the oil. Oil is ready when the batter immediately start to bubble, cook, and color.
6. Fry up shrimp in 3 batches cooking the shrimp just so that the cornmeal colors a bit (no more than 1 minute per side). Remove and reserve on a sheet of parchment paper. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper when still hot.

7. Slice the rolls in half horizontally and grill up quickly on both sides (30 seconds per side) to warm and get a nice grill mark.

8. To plate: coat both halves of the rolls with the special sauce. Add 4 crusted shrimps and top with a dash of the sweet chorizo hot sauce. Add the fennel slaw and fennel frawn and top with an additional dash of hot sauce if desired before closing the bun.

Treat your own po boy to this solstice supper tonight. It’ll make him feel like the rich man he really is…

Darcy Jones


  1. June 22, 2011 / 2:31 pm

    Making this for dinner tonight. Looks so amazing!

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