Hunan Shrimp have been an easy, quick and popular dish for years now. People love trying and cooking it because of its deliciousness and exquisite flavors and spicy kick. It is basically a super-spicy dish made up of shrimps and other flavorful additions. You can enjoy it anytime you feel like eating a yummy seafood-cooked meal. Its hot and spicy flavors have made many people its fans admirers. If you want to know more about this savory dish, keep reading this article till the end!
Chinese Hunan Shrimp (Origin and Curiosities)
Hunan is a Chinese province rich in taste and cultural cooking. Spicy and flavorful dishes aren’t much common in China. However, you’ll find lots of them in Hunan’s cuisine. All kinds of flavors, spices, and mouth-watering flavors are used in the dishes, making them ravishing for food lovers.
Hunan Shrimp is one of them! If you’ve heard about the Western Han Dynasty, you should know that this dish goes back to that time. There might be new additions and changes in the cooking technique with time, but still, it offers the same flavorful taste as it did 2100 years ago.
First, Chinese people loved enjoying this dish as a meal, but now it has made its place in various places of the world. Many people around the globe prefer cooking it too. Especially, the ones who are fond of seafood would find this dish really appetizing. If you’re one of them, you should definitely try it.
Hunan Shrimp Vs Szechuan Shrimp
Both recipes, Hunan Shrimp and the Szechuan Shrimp, are known for their intriguing taste and deliciousness. The Hunan shrimp recipe comes from the south-central part of China (Hunan Province), while the other shrimp recipe is the famous dish of Sichuan province. As both are Chinese cuisines, they are a lot similar in taste and style. However, there’s one main difference between both of them.
Hunan is known for its hot and spicy flavors, and the Szechuan cuisine is well-known for its sweet and flavorful balanced dishes. And that’s what makes their shrimp dishes distinct from each other too.
Hunan shrimp makes more of a hot and spicy flavored meal, while the Szechuan shrimp has added sweetness that balances the spiciness. If you’re a fan of dishes full of spices and hot flavors, Hunan Shrimp is going to be your favorite. But if you belong to the group of people who like mixed tastes and flavors with added sweetness and sugars, you should try Szechuan shrimp.
Another thing that makes both dishes a bit different is the heating process. Hunan’s recipe includes dry heat cooking, while the Szechuan’s is fiery and solid. This makes their taste a bit different. However, both are mouth-numbing and tasty recipes. All that matters is your likeness. Maybe, try them both and figure out for yourself what you like better!
Hunan Shrimp Ingredients
Most people confuse themselves while cooking Hunan Shrimp. When it comes to Asian food, there are various cooking styles for every dish. People from different locations cook it as they find fit. That is the reason why they have muddled thoughts when trying to prepare delicious Hunan shrimp at home. To help you through this situation, here is the recipe for the most basic and traditional Hunan shrimp. It’ll help you cook a flavorful dish. However, you can set the spices according to your taste later on.
Spices and Sauces
- Oyster sauce
- Chinses black vinegar
- Soy sauce (Tamari)
- Chili Bean Sauce
- Sha axing wine
Argentinean Shrimps are best for stir fry dishes like Hunan Shrimp because of their large size and lobster-like texture and taste. If it is not available, you can use whatever you want. It can be fresh, frozen, anything works. Just make sure its weight’s one pound total.
In traditional recipes, oil of canola or peanut is used. However, you can opt for sesame oil as it can also add another flavor to the dish.
To get the crispy and crunchy texture, add shrimp into the cornstarch before cooking. If you prefer having a thick sauce, adding cornstarch at the end of cooking will be great.
Crush or thinly slice garlic adds aroma as well as flavor to your dish.
You can add different vegetables such as red bell pepper, mushrooms, broccoli, scallions, green beans, asparagus, carrots, and any vegetable you like. Stir fry the vegetables you like. They should be a little charred on the outside but still have that crunch texture to help you enjoy a crunchy dish afterward.
Tamari Soy Sauce
Tamari is a gluten-free soy sauce having a less salty savorer. It is best for Hunan Shrimp as it adds rich flavor to it. But you can use any regular soy sauce if you don’t have it.
Hunan Shrimp is a spicy chinese dish; that’s why chili paste is a must for it fermented and mostly known as Doubanjiang. You can get this paste from any local store or order it from Amazon. You can also add Sambal Oelek or Gochujang to this dish instead of Doubanjiang.
Rice vinegar is a must for Hunan Shrimp due to its tangy flavor.
Use chicken stock with a version of low-sodium to create a sauce-like texture.
Hunan Shrimp Recipe
The most authentic Hunan shrimp is the spicy stir-fry shrimp with special Hunan sauce coating the shrimp. It best goes with the steamed rice because of its full of earthy and garlic flavors. So, let’s get started with the recipe and help you cook a delightful meal!
- 1 pound large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 3-4 dried red chilies, chopped (adjust to taste)
- 2 green onions, sliced
- 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced
- 1/2 yellow bell pepper, sliced
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
- 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon water
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)
- Prepare the shrimp: Rinse the shrimp under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels. Remove the shells and tails, and devein them if necessary. Place the shrimp in a bowl, and add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Toss the shrimp until they are coated with cornstarch. Set aside.
- In a wok or large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil over high heat until it shimmers.
- Stir-fry the garlic, ginger, and chilies: Add the minced garlic, grated ginger, and chopped dried red chilies to the wok. Stir-fry the aromatics for about 30 seconds, or until they become fragrant.
- Add the vegetables: Add the sliced green onions, red bell pepper, and yellow bell pepper to the wok. Stir-fry the vegetables for 1-2 minutes, or until they start to soften.
- Add the sauce: Add 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of sugar, and 1 tablespoon of chili garlic sauce to the wok. Stir everything together until the sauce is well combined.
- Add the broth: Pour 1/2 cup of chicken or vegetable broth into the wok, and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Add the shrimp: Add the cornstarch-coated shrimp to the wok. Stir everything together, and cook the shrimp for 3-4 minutes, or until they turn pink and are cooked through.
- Thicken the sauce: In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of water. Pour the cornstarch mixture into the wok, and stir everything together until the sauce thickens.
- Adjust seasoning: Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper to taste.
- Garnish and serve: Garnish the Hunan shrimp with chopped cilantro, if desired, and serve hot with rice or noodles.
Enjoy your spicy and delicious Hunan Shrimp!
Hunan Shrimp Calories
To give you an overview of the calories and nutrition present in the dish, you should be aware that it is perfectly safe and, in fact, helpful for your health. Seafood has always been known for its richness in proteins. It gives you plenty of delightful health benefits, just like many other kinds of seafood.
One serving of this dish is approximately 252 calories, which is just the perfect amount for a one-time meal. However, it also has various unsaturated fats and cholesterol in it. The presence of cholesterol and sodium can make it quite disturbing if you’re on a strict diet plan. But usually, it’s not an issue at all because of the additional potassium, vitamin A & C, and the calcium present in it. This all makes it good for the bones, healthy body, and sharp mind.
To get an idea about the exact amount of elements present in Hunan Shrimp, have a view at this following list.
- One Serving of Hunan Shrimp = 222 grams
- Number of Calories in One Serving = 252 calories
- The number of calories present in the fat = 65 in total
- of grams of saturated fat = 1.2 grams only
- Total Unsaturated Fat = 5.5 grams
- Amount of Cholesterol present = 254 mg
- Amount of Sodium present = 1654 mg
- Total Potassium present = 369 mg
- Presence of Vitamins = Vitamin A – 59% RDA and Vitamin C – 51% RDA
- Total Calcium Content present = 9.8%
So, that’s a complete list of contents present in one serving of Hunan Shrimp. If seen as a whole, it isn’t unhealthy at all because all the contents are balanced and cooked in a perfect way. Thus, enjoy your meal without worrying about any of its adverse effects on your body or health.
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