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Sweet and tangy shrimp taco. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)
Sweet and tangy shrimp taco. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead) This Mar. 17, 2014 photo shows a sweet and tangy shrimp taco in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead) This Mar. 17, 2014 photo shows a sweet and tangy shrimp taco in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead) This Mar. 17, 2014 photo shows a sweet and tangy shrimp taco in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead) This Mar. 17, 2014 photo shows a sweet and tangy shrimp taco in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

A shrimp taco with little fuss

I needed a dinner that was comforting, flavorful, and little effort. My inspiration? A 1-pound bag of frozen raw shrimp. I firmly believe that if you like shrimp, you should always have a few bags of them in the freezer. They thaw quickly, and cook even more quickly. As in minutes. I decided to convert my bag into sweet-and-tangy shrimp tacos, a good eat-with-your-hands sort of comfort food.

Aside from the cooking of the shrimp, use this recipe just as a guide. I like to top my tacos with soft goat cheese and avocado, but use whatever you like. Ditto for the flour tortillas; corn would be fine, too. Or if you really want, take all the same ingredients and dump them over a plate of tortilla chips for easy nachos. Whatever you do, don’t skip the tiny amount of sugar added when cooking the shrimp. It’s a trick I learned from the celebrity chef Alex Guarnaschelli. It acts like salt to help highlight the natural briny-sweet flavor of the shrimp.


Start to finish: 20 minutes. Servings: 4.

2 tablespoons butter

½ medium red onion, diced

1 pound shelled, raw large shrimp

1 teaspoon sugar

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ cup thinly sliced Peppadew peppers

Ground black pepper

Four 8-inch flour tortillas

1 heart romaine lettuce, finely chopped

2 ounces crumbled fresh goat cheese

1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced

In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and sugar and saute until just barely pink and firm, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the red pepper flakes and Peppadews, then heat for another minute. Season with black pepper.

Arrange a quarter of the romaine down the center of each tortilla, then top with a quarter of the shrimp and Peppadew mixture. Top each serving with a quarter of the cheese and avocado slices. Serve immediately.

Nutrition information per serving: 460 calories; 190 calories from fat (41 percent of total calories); 22 g fat (8 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 195 mg cholesterol; 34 g carbohydrate; 6 g fiber; 3 g sugar; 31 g protein; 750 mg sodium.

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