This shrimp appetizer is easily made by wrapping shrimp in wonton wrappers, then frying for a crispy-wonderful appetizer that is delicious served on its own, or with Thai sweet chili sauce for dipping. Thai flavorings help make this classic Asian appetizer even better while keeping it simple to put together. I find that 15 large shrimp is the perfect amount to make at one time, but feel free to double the recipe if you have a friend or two to help you wrap. This shrimp appetizer is excellent for a party or as an appetizer for any occasion.
- 15 large raw shrimp (tails either left on or removed for easier eating)
- 15 wonton wraps
- 1-2 cups oil (coconut oil, corn, or other healthy oil)
- 1 egg (beaten)
- 3-4 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1/4 cup fresh coriander/cilantro leaves and stems (finely chopped)
- 2 tsp. fish sauce (or soy sauce)
- 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
- 2 tsp. brown sugar
- 1 red chili (minced, or 3/4 tsp. dried crushed chili; or 1-2 tsp. chili sauce)
- Optional: 1 bottle of Thai sweet chili sauce for serving
- Other: 1 tsp. cornstarch
Place shrimp in a bowl and add the garlic, coriander, fish or soy sauce, oyster sauce, brown sugar, and chili. Be sure the coriander is finely chopped for the best taste.
Toss well and set aside to marinate 10 minutes (or up to 30). Meanwhile, prepare your pan for frying. I like using a small frying pan or wok, as this way less oil is needed (you want oil about 1 inch deep).
Toss the shrimp once again before wrapping. To wrap, lay out the first wonton wrapper on the diagonal. Brush the entire surface with beaten egg, then position the shrimp horizontally across the center (with its tail sticking out past the left corner). Fold the right corner over the bottom of the shrimp, then bring up the bottom and tuck over. Roll quite tightly to finish and press firmly to seal.
Place wrapped shrimp on a plate lightly dusted with cornstarch (to keep wrappers from sticking).
Heat oil over medium-high heat. To test if the oil is hot enough, dip one of the wrapped shrimp in - if it starts to sizzle and cook, the oil is ready. Fry the wrapped shrimp about 1 minute per side, or until light golden brown and crunchy. Once your first batch is frying, reduce heat to medium. Drain on paper towels or a clean kitchen towel.
Serve immediately either as is (they're great on their own), OR with Thai sweet chili sauce for dipping. This appetizer can be kept in a warm oven (uncovered) for up to 1 hour if expecting company.