The other week I was asked by my friend Sean to make and post a grilled shrimp recipe. I am always looking for new ideas so I jumped on the chance. What kind of shrimp would I make? Bacon wrapped shrimp, of course. So I went to the store picked up a couple of pounds of shrimp and a couple of pounds of bacon and started experimenting. I have never wrapped bacon around shrimp before so it was a learning experience. The first batch was bad. I wrapped a whole strip of bacon around the shrimp and started to grill. Way too much bacon, plus by the time that the bacon was cooked, the shrimp were like bricks. Back to the drawing board. So I partially cooked the bacon and cut it in half so that there was not too much bacony goodness and we had a winner. I know that sounds weird, why would I want less bacony goodness, but there was so much bacon that it overwhelmed the shrimp. I never thought I would say it, but sometimes there can be too much bacon. I still can’t believe that I just wrote that.
The bacon is crispy that the shrimp are perfectly cooked. A great recipe.
Grilled Bacon Wrapped Shrimp
- 11-12 strips of bacon
- 1 lb 22-24 ct shrimp
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup chili garlic sauce – In the Asian aisle at the grocery store
- zest and juice of two limes
- 1 tbs brown sugar
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tbs minced ginger
- 1 tbs red chili flakes (optional)
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- salt and pepper
The first step is to peel and de-vein the shrimp. I like to leave the tails on for presentation purposes and to give your guest something to hold on to so that they don’t need a fork. Holding the shrimp flat against the board slice a 1/8th inch slice down the back of the shrimp. From the tail fan all the way to the head. Remove the vein and then peel the shrimp. I find it is easier to de-vein before peeling, as it makes the peeling so much easier. You will need a sharp knife as you will have to cut through the shell.
Next place the shrimp in a zip top bag. Then zest and juice the lime into the bag.
Now mince the garlic and the ginger and add it to the bag.
Finally add the remaining ingreadients except for the bacon. Mix around the shrimp and the marinade and place in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes and up to 4 hours. Remember we have lime juice in this marinade and you don’t want a ceviche.
Right before you pull the shrimp out it is time to partially cook the bacon. I find that it is easiest in the microwave. That way the bacon stays flat and will be easy to work with. Layer a couple of sheets of paper towel on a microwave safe plate. Then place as many pieces of bacon as you can without overlapping them. I could do about 6-7 at a time. Then place a single sheet of paper towel over the bacon.
Cook for 2-4 minutes depending on how many pieces of bacon you have on the plate. I had 7 thick cut slices on my plate and it took 3.5 minutes to cook the bacon. Cook till pink and halfway cooked. Next remove the bacon from the plate onto a cutting board. Slice the bacon in half lengthwise and let it cool for a minute.
Remove the shrimp from the fridge and grab your skewers. I have wide skewers that prevent the shrimp from rotating around the skewer. If you have them, I recommend them. Otherwise, use two regular skewers. One through the head portion and one near the tail portion. The will make it extremely easy for you to grill. Otherwise the shrimp just spin around the skewer and they are hard as heck to flip.
Now starting at the tail of the shrimp wrap the bacon around one time so that the end of the bacon is wrapped by the main part of the bacon and is secure. Then continue to wrap the bacon around the body of the shrimp until you are near the head. Finally make sure that the end of the shrimp is at a point where the skewer can pierce it and hold it in place. This method will secure the bacon so that it does not fall off before it is cooked.
Continue with the remaining shrimp.
Place the shrimp on a plate and cover with the remaining marinade. Plus add a bit of salt and pepper to the outside of the bacon wrapped shrimp. Place in the refrigerator while the grill is heating up.
Preheat your grill to medium. Seafood is a tricky beast and you don’t want to overcook it.
Now that your grill is preheated, place the skewers on a diagonal to the grill grates. Unless you have a giant grill, this will probably be the only way that the skewers will fit on the grill and still allow the lid to close. Shut the lid and cook for 3-4 minutes. Make sure to check for flare-ups. If you have any squirt them with a little water.
Flip the shrimp and continue to cook for 2-3 more minutes. When the bacon is crisp remove from the grill.
You may have to cook them for a little longer on each side depending on the thickness of your bacon.
Let cool for a minute before serving.
Squeeze a little lime juice over the top of the shrimp and serve.
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