Mar 15, 2018

Spicy Shrimp Bowl with Crispy Rice and Kale

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
These bowls are similar to poké, and since they include cooked crispy shrimp, they are the perfect alternative if you don’t have access to high-quality sushi-grade fish.

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These shrimp bowls are served with a bed of both kale and crispy rice for a filling and healthy meal with varying textures. The shrimp are pan-fried in cornstarch until they are crispy. Then they are topped with a drizzle of homemade spicy mayonnaise for a creamy kick.

Spicy Shrimp Bowl with Crispy Rice and Kale

Key ingredients in this recipe

  • Kale – Kale can be tough if served immediately. I toss the kale in a sesame dressing that is then “massaged in”. As the kale sits it becomes tender. The kale can even be prepped earlier in the day and left to sit. Unlike other greens it won’t become soggy! I prefer Tuscan kale to curly kale in this recipe.
  • Rice – Crispy rice is my new obsession! It’s so easy to make and the texture adds so much to dishes. I advise making the rice a day ahead of time. If it is still hot when you add it to the hot pan, it will steam rather than crisp up.
  • Shrimp The terms “jumbo” and “extra jumbo” and “colossal” aren’t standardized terms within the industry. Instead look at the numbers – they estimate approximately how many shrimp are in 1 pound. The shrimp should be peeled and deveined before beginning the recipe.
  • Spicy mayonnaise – The spicy, slightly acidic sauce I spoon over the rice bowls combines mayonnaise, lime juice, sambal oleak, togarashi shichimi and soy sauce. Togarashi is a Japanese spice mixture like chili pepper and sesame seeds. See below for substitution instructions. The sauce can be made a day or two ahead of time and stored, covered and refrigerated until ready to use.
Spicy shrimp bowl with crispy rice and kale recipe from cooking with cocktail rings

How to make spicy shrimp bowls

  1. Make the spicy mayonnaise. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the mayonnaise, lime juice, sambal oleak, togarashi, and soy sauce until thoroughly combined. Add a tablespoon of water to thin the sauce and whisk until completely combined. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Massage the kale. Add the kale to a large mixing bowl. In another small mixing bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, rice vinegar and soy sauce. Pour the dressing over the kale, and massage the dressing into the kale. Set aside.
  3. Make the crispy rice. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the rice into the pan in an even layer and cook, untouched, until the bottom is crispy and golden brown Stir and cook for an additional few minutes. Remove the pan from heat and set aside.
  4. Prep the shrimp. Season the shrimp with salt then add to a bowl and toss with the cornstarch. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add half of the vegetable oil and heat through.
  5. Cook the shrimp. Working in two batches, add the shrimp and sauté until crispy and the outside is golden brown. Flip the shrimp and continue to cook until just cooked through and golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and add the remaining oil to the pan and cook the remaining shrimp.
  6. Serve the shrimp rice bowls. To serve, divide the kale among bowls. Top with the crispy rice followed by avocado and shrimp. Top with the spicy mayo, sesame seeds and green onions.

 

Healthy-ish shrimp bowls with crispy shrimp avocado and green onion over crispy rice and kale topped with a spicy togarashi mayo sauce.

Day old rice is optimal for cooking fried rice since it has dried out a bit. When making fried rice the goal is to fry it so it’s a bit crispy and absorbs the rice rather than steaming it to the point that it is mushy. While day-old rice isn’t required it definitely makes for the best texture. In this recipe the rice is crisped in the remaining pork fat.

If you don’t have leftover rice you can mimic the dried rice by spreading the cooked rice in an even layer on a baking sheet and refrigerating it for an hour or freezing it for about 15 minutes to 30 minutes. This shortcut will draw the moisture out while saving time.

Easy substitutes and tips:

  • The Tuscan or “dino” kale can easily be substituted with curly kale.
  • If you can’t find togarashi for the spicy mayo, just stir together mayonnaise with either sambal or sriracha and lime for a simplified version of the spicy mayo.
  • Add an additional tablespoon of sambal or sriracha to the spicy mayo if you like it hotter.

 

Healthy-ish shrimp bowls with crispy shrimp avocado and green onion over crispy rice and kale topped with a spicy togarashi mayo sauce.
 

Spicy Shrimp Bowl with Crispy Rice and Kale

marinated kale and crispy fried rice topped with green onions spicy mayo and avocado in a grey stone bowl with wood chopsticks on a white wood board
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Serves 4

Ingredients:

For the spicy mayo:

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oleak
  • 1 tablespoon togarashi shichimi *
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

For the kale:

  • 4 cups roughly chopped Tuscan kale
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce

For assembly:

  • 3 cups cooked day old long-grain white rice
  • pound 26/30 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Kosher salt as needed
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil divided
  • 2 medium Haas avocados, pitted, peeled and sliced
  • 1 teaspoon white and black sesame seeds
  • 3 green onions thinly sliced

Instructions:

For the spicy mayo:

  • In a small mixing bowl whisk together the mayonnaise, lime juice, sambal oleak, togarashi, and soy sauce until thoroughly combined. Add a tablespoon of water to thin the sauce and whisk until completely combined. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the kale:

  • Add the kale to a large mixing bowl. In another small mixing bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, rice vinegar and soy sauce. Pour the dressing over the kale, and massage the dressing into the kale. Set aside.

For assembly:

  • Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the rice into the pan in an even layer and cook, untouched, until the bottom is crispy and golden brown, about 3 minutes. Stir and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and set aside.
  • Season the shrimp with salt then add to a bowl and toss with the cornstarch. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add half of the vegetable oil and heat through.
  • Working in two batches, add the shrimp and sauté until crispy and the outside is golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip the shrimp and continue to cook until just cooked through and golden brown, about an additional 2 minutes.
  • Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and add the remaining oil to the pan and cook the remaining shrimp.
  • To serve, divide the kale among bowls. Top with the crispy rice followed by avocado and shrimp. Top with the spicy mayo, sesame seeds and green onions.

Notes:

*Note: Togarashi shichimi is a Japanese seasoning mix typically made up of a blend of seven spices: ground red chili pepper, ground Japanese pepper, roasted orange peel, black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, hemp seed and ground ginger.  
If you can’t find it, substitute with either an additional teaspoon of sambal or sriracha.

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    • Yay! SO happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe as much as I do! One of my favorite weeknight dinners! Thanks for sharing Jamie!

  1. This was DIVINE. This shrimp is perfectly crispy and y’all, this spicy mayo is next level. I love that it’s a little more robust than just your usual mayo and siracha.

  2. Absolutely love this recipe! It reminds me so much of sushi bake – a dish I love and crave all the time. This is dish is so much healthier with the addition of kale. I literally ate this four days in a row and will keep it on my weekday lunch/dinner rotation. I added wakame salad and sprinkled furikake seasoning a couple times and it was fabulous. Thank you for sharing this incredible recipe Kylie!

    • I’m SO happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe so much! I agree I love how it has sushi-like flavors! I was just recommending it to a pregnant friend who was missing sushi!! I will have to try with wakame salad and furikake, I LOVE both of those things! Thanks for sharing Vi!

  3. This recipe was insane! It was so fresh and simple to make, I already had most of the ingredients at home so it was an easy and delicious weeknight meal. Definitely one of the best recipes I’ve ever tried.

  4. I have been eyeing this dish for a while! The other night i decided to finally make it and let me tell you, this won’t be the last time I make this! This recipe was easy to follow and does not take too long. It really helps that the instructions are broken down into 3 parts of preparing the dish – prep for sauce, prep for kale, assembly (shrimp + rice). (I used the leftover kale the next day to eat with poke and rice).

    I will definitely be making this again for myself and others!!