Get outside and grill up a batch of these Grilled Coconut Lime Shrimp this week!
Can I just put it out there (again) how happy I am that warmer weather has arrived for good? I’m looking forward to taking walks with little Robbie. And putzing around the garden. And going to sleep with the windows open at night. And getting out the grill. Oh yes, the grill! The smell of burgers sizzling away on a hot grill. And taste of a cold beer on the back porch after a long day of work. The buzzing of mosquitoes. Yup, warmer weather is here!
So the buzzing of the mosquitoes isn’t exactly a welcome aspect of summer. But I’ll put up with it if I have to. And by “put up with it,” I mean pull out all sorts of bug zappers, citronella candles and bug spray. Those ‘skeeters won’t stand a chance! But speaking of summer insects, can we talk about bees for a moment? Bees always seem to come around as soon as we sit down to have lunch on the back deck. They’re incredibly annoying, and (like most people) I don’t particularly enjoy getting stung by a bee.
But bees are disappearing. Honey bees that is. I saw a segment on the morning news late last year talking about the dramatic drop in honey bee colonies in both North America and Europe. Beekeepers have reported that their bee hives are dying off at almost double the normal rate. Here’s the thing. Bees are not just good for crops, they’re great for crops. Without bees doing their pollination work, our crops just won’t grow as well. It’s part of the whole balance of nature.
One of our neighbors briefly considered starting a honey bee colony in his yard. At the time, I thought it was fascinating…but the idea of a whole colony of bees living across the street didn’t excite me much. I have no idea why honey bees are dying off faster than normal. But I can assure you that I will think twice about hating on bees that come around when I’m outside grilling. (However, I will still continue to hate on yellowjackets and wasps. Those aren’t honey bees. They don’t pollinate my garden.)
But back to grilling. Bees, mosquitoes and other insects are just a side effect of the warmer weather, so I guess I’ll just deal. This past weekend, I was in the mood to grill. I grabbed some shrimp from the freezer, and I whipped up a quick lime marinade. One of the nice things about grilling shrimp is that they cook quickly. And you don’t want to marinate shrimp too long, either (~15-20 minutes is just fine).
I made an easy lime juice and cilantro marinade for these shrimp, but here’s a fun little trick. I kept a bit of the marinade aside, and then I brushed it on the shrimp while they grilled. These Grilled Coconut Lime Shrimp were packed with flavor! I did add a bit of heat into the brushing sauce, so I whipped up a quick coconut yogurt dipping sauce to balance the extra heat.
My wife took a taste of the yogurt sauce by itself, and she wasn’t too impressed. Then she dipped a grilled shrimp in that sauce, and she totally got it then. The flavors all mesh together and complement each other. So pull out the grill this coming weekend and make a batch of these Grilled Coconut Lime Shrimp. And if you see a honey bee go flying by, just give him a little pat on the back. (Ok, maybe not. But do stop and appreciate the work that these bees are doing for your garden!)
Grilled Coconut Lime Shrimp
For the Shrimp
- Wooden skewers
- 1 pound large shrimp peeled and deveined
- ½ cup lime juice
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 Tbsp garlic diced
- 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro minced
- 2-3 tsp green hot sauce
For the Coconut Dipping Sauce
- ½ cup 1 5.3 oz. container plain Greek yogurt
- 3 Tbsp cream of coconut see note
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp salt
- Soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat grill (or grill pan) to medium-high heat.
- Thread 4-5 shrimp onto each skewer; place shrimp in shallow baking dish. (Tip: Use 2 skewers to prevent shrimp from spinning while grilling.)
- In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, garlic and cilantro. Remove ⅓ cup of marinade and set aside. Pour remaining marinade over shrimp, turning until well-coated. Let stand at room temperature for 10-15 minutes.
- Whisk green pepper sauce into the reserved marinade; set mixture aside.
- Make the Coconut Dipping Sauce by whisking together yogurt, cream of coconut, smoked paprika and salt; set sauce aside.
- Brush grill with vegetable oil or spray with nonstick grilling spray. Remove shrimp from marinade and place on grill. Grill 2 minutes and then brush with the reserved marinade. Flip and brush with more marinade. Grill for 1-2 more minutes, or until shrimp are pink and fully cooked.
- Serve hot with Coconut Dipping Sauce.