Four couples who like to cook. And drink. And travel. Every few months, we gather at someone’s home for our Gourmet Club dinner cook-a-thon. The hosts select the theme and divvy up potluck assignments. We schlep bags of ingredients, piles of utensils, then make ourselves at home for platters, serving pieces. Every surface is used, and pets usually do floor cleanup the next morning.
Our connection evolved from female friendships over 30+ years. Ricki and Laura are pals since high school. Laura was my first employee, then my client. I knew Marlene through the Home Economists in Business group – the original “foodies.” I introduced Marlene to Laura maybe 20 years ago when they were both single gals who liked to golf and travel, as did Ricki but I didn’t know her yet. Ricki had been with John for some time and Larry and I have been married since the earth cooled. Laura and Marlene met Jeff and John #2 through golf. Badda bing, badda boom = four married couples.
The most recent Club was at our home, HAWAIIAN theme – Ricki and John started us off with phenomenal beer-battered appetizer Coconut Shrimp, savory + sweet + spicy:
Ricki and John’s Coconut Shrimp
Served the 8 of us and we were pretty dang hungry.
- 1/2 or 1 cup if only using orange marmalade
- 1/2 apricot/pineapple jam (optional)
- 1/3 cup Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon horseradish
- 1 teaspoon hot and sweet chili sauce
- hot sauce to taste
Combine all ingredients and let sit for as long as possible. Always taste to make sure you have the right flavor combo for you i.e. a lot of spice or a little spice.
- 1 1/4 lbs shrimp, unpeeled (large)
- 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon paprika
- 1 1/4 cups light flavored beer
- 1 can 13.5 oz coconut milk
- 2 cups coconut, shredded
- vegetable oil for frying
Peel and devein the shrimp leaving the tails intact. Combine flour, salt, pepper and paprika in a medium bowl, stirring well.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Gradually add beer and coconut milk, stirring until batter is smooth.
Dip shrimp in batter, then dredge in the coconut.
Heat oil in skillet or electric fryer until hot but not smoking. Fry shrimp in hot oil until browned. Turn once.
Drain on paper towels. Enjoy asap!