Seared Shrimp in Coconut Milk Reduction

Seared Shrimp in Coconut Milk Reduction

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  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 lb shrimp, de-veined and shelled (leave tail on)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • salt and pepper
  • rice, pasta, or neither!


1. Chop the spinach into thin strips (chiffon cut) and set aside. Next, heat the olive oil in a non stick frying pan on medium heat then mince the garlic. When the oil is hot, toss in the garlic and fry for about 30 seconds then toss in the shrimp. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Fry the shrimp for about 3 minutes then take it out and put it in another bowl. Be careful not to overcook because they will end up rubbery. Next, pour in the coconut milk. If you’ve never opened or used coconut milk from a can before, the water tends to separate from the cream so it will look like a watery mess when you first open it. Just give it a quick mix with a spoon to combine the parts equally before adding it to the frying pan.

3. Once you add the milk to the pan, increase the heat to medium-high and stir the milk briskly and constantly while it is reducing to prevent it from sticking to the bottom. Season with salt and pepper. It will bubble more and more as it reduces. The milk will reduce in volume and become thicker, like a sauce. As soon as it achieves a creamier, thicker, consistency dip a spoon in the pan. If your sauce coats the spoon, your sauce is done! Be careful not to over reduce the coconut milk. I did this before on accident with another dish and it is not pretty! The milk starts to separate and eventually evaporates, leaving only the oil and the creamy texture is lost!

4. Quickly, lower the temp to medium and toss the spinach into the sauce. Combine and stir spinach for about 3 minutes then add the shrimp. Toss the shrimp and spinach in the sauce for about 2 more minutes and you’re done! Serve alone as an appetizer or toss it with a little pasta. I chose to eat mine with hot jasmine rice but then again, I like everything with rice.