How this recipe got its name is beyond me. Perhaps it is because when one bites into it, a crackling sound is produced from the crisp egg roll wrapper that envelopes the shrimp. On the other hand, when I think of food that’s described as a “firecracker” I expect a fiery, hot and spicy taste. (Other non-wrapped versions of this dish are exactly that!) So, to stay true to the name, I made my recipe more spicy by adding jalapeno peppers while preserving the sweet and tangy flavor of the dip.
Firecracker shrimp is best served as an appetizer but one can never go wrong by making it an entree, served with steaming rice and any sauteed vegetable like green beans, spinach or cabbage.
1 lb medium shrimp, peeled, deveined with tail on
1/2 tsp olive oil for marinade
1/2 cup olive oil for frying
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sweet chili sauce for the marinade
2-3 tbsp sweet chili sauce for the dip
1 tsp cornstarch
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 tbsp turkey bacon bits
2-3 small jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced
5 x 5-inch egg roll wrapper for each piece of shrimp
Using a small knife, straighten each shrimp by making 2-3 nicks on the curved side. This will prevent the shrimp from curling when wrapping or frying
In a shallow bowl, combine 1/2 tsp olive oil, soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, cornstarch, green onions, bacon bits and jalapeno peppers. Stir well.
Submerge the shrimp pieces in the marinade for about half an hour
Tightly wrap each shrimp with a piece of egg roll wrapper, moistening the ends with water to seal the wrap. Leave the shrimp tail unwrapped
In a medium frying pan or wok, heat 1/2 cup olive oil and fry the wrapped shrimp until crispy and golden brown. (I like my my rolls slight burned, but to avoid this, turn the shrimp over a few times when frying)
Place the fried shrimp on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb excess oil
Serve with sweet chili dipping sauce.
(Makes 5-6 servings)