Shrimp Kratong with Sesame-Cilantro Dressing

Kratong Cups

  • 1 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2/3 cup slaked lime water (see below)
  • 4 cups vegetable oil for frying

  1. Prepare slaked lime water by mixing one tablespoon lime paste with 2.5 cups water. Stir well and leave until the lime crystals sink to the bottom. 
  2. Pour 2/3 cups of this clear liquid into another container. Discard the rest.
  3. Mix the two flours, sugar and salt in a large bowl, then egg yolks, oil. Mix  well with your hands and remove all lumps. 
  4. Slowly add, bit-by-bit, the 2/3 cup of regular water (not the slaked lime water), mixing as you go. 
  5. Get this batter as smooth as possible. 
  6. Finally, add the 2/3 cup slaked lime water, and mix well. 
  7. Filter the batter once through a sieve to remove any remaining lumps. 
  8. Pour the batter into a bowl large enough for your kratong tong mold. 
  9. In a fairly deep pan, heat the 4 cups of cooking oil to medium-high (or a bit higher). 
  10. Place your kratong tong mold into the oil for a minute to let it get hot, this is important. When  ready  remove the mold from the hold oil, turn it over and gently shake off oil from the mold, and quickly dip your hot mold into the batter, so the batter coats the underside of the mold only. You should hear it sizzle a little bit. 
  11. Your batter will stick to the bottom of the mold. 
  12. Return the mold back into the hot oil and let it rest on the bottom of the pan to allow the batter to set. 
  13. After 15 seconds, lift the mold up a bit, and the cups will fall away, or you may need to use a fork to gently push the cups away from the mold. 
  14. When the cups are golden brown, remove from oil and place on a paper towel upside down to dry.

Cilantro Oil

  • 1 bunch  cilantro
  • Salt and sugar to taste
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp. toasted coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest 
  1. Bring a pot over water to a rapid boil. Season the boiling water with salt and sugar. It should taste salty like the sea and sweet like cola. 
  2. Season an ice bath similarly. 
  3. Rinse the cilantro and cut away the large heavy stems at the bottom. 
  4. Blanch the cilantro for 30 seconds and shock in the ice bath. 
  5. Gather the blanched cilantro and squeeze to remove as much water as possible. 
  6. Place the cilantro in a blender with the vegetable oil, coriander seed, and lemon zest. 
  7. Blend on high for 3 minutes. 
  8. Pour the oil into a strainer lined with cheesecloth, a grease filter, or a coffee filter and allow to drip for several hours. Discard the solids left behind.

Sesame Dressing

  • 2 tsp. Chinese spicy mustard
  • 2 tsp. pickled ginger
  • 2 Tbsp. mirin
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) vegetable oil
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) sesame oil 
  1. Place the mustard, ginger, mirin, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar in a blender. 
  2. Blend on high while slowly adding vegetable oil. 
  3. After the vegetable oil, drizzle in the sesame oil. If the oil is not emulsified add a bit more mustard or some mayonnaise and blend once more.

Poached Shrimp

  •  500 gm (~1 lb) 16/20 shrimp, raw, shell on
  •  1 quart water
  •  1 celery stalk, sliced
  •  1/2 onion, sliced
  •  2 cloves garlic, crushed
  •  2 slices fresh ginger
  •  2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  •  1 lemon
  • Salt to taste
  • Cilantro oil, to taste
  • Chillie paste, to taste 
  1. Peel and devein the shrimp, reserving the shells. 
  2. In a medium saucepan combine the shrimp shells with the water, celery, onion, garlic, ginger, vinegar, and zest and juice of the lemon. 
  3. Bring to a simmer and season heavily with salt. 
  4. Add the shrimp and drop the heat to low. Poach for 4 minutes and cool the shrimp in the poaching liquid.
  5. When the shrimp cool, drain them well and cut into large pieces. 
  6. Toss with cilantro oil and chillie paste to taste.

To Assemble:

  • 2  cucumbers
  •  kosher salt
  •  2 large carrots, finely julienned
  •  1 Tbsp. mirin
  •  1 tsp. soy sauce
  •  1 avocado
  •  Poached shrimp
  •  Cilantro oil
  •  Sesame vinaigrette
  •  Cilantro and black sesame seeds for garnish 
  1. Cut the ends from each cucumber and wash well. Cut each cucumber in half and, using a mandolin, slice 1 mm (~1/16 in) thick planks from the cucumber, stopping when you reach the seedy middle. 
  2. Repeat on the other side of the cucumber. Lay the slices out of a piece of paper towel and salt lightly.
  3. Toss the julienne carrot with the mirin and soy sauce and slice the avocado into long pieces. 
  4. Lay a piece of plastic wrap on a flat work surface and lay 4-5 cucumber slices on top, overlapping slightly. 
  5. Place some carrots, a few pieces of avocado, and a few pieces of shrimp at the end of the sheet of cucumber. 
  6. Carefully roll the cucumber around the filling using the plastic wrap. 
  7. Wrap the roll tightly in the plastic wrap and twist the ends. 
  8. Using a sharp knife cut each roll into 3 or 4 pieces and carefully remove the plastic wrap. 
  9. Place each roll section into the prepared kratongs.
  10. Drizzle some sesame vinaigrette over and a little cilantro oil. 
  11. Garnish with cilantro and black sesame seeds.