Slippery Shrimp Topped Salad

1 pound large shrimp

1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch

2 cups oil (or enough to have about an inch or so in your pan)

1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons water

3 large cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon minced ginger root (use the microplane to grate it)

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2-3 tablespoons ketchup

1-2 tablespoon Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce (this makes it HOT)

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1 tablespoon white wine

2 tablespoons Agave syrup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 head of romaine lettuce, chopped

1 large carrot, sliced into ribbons

1 medium cucumber, sliced

parsley, chopped

chives, chopped

4 green onions, sliced

Peel, devein, and butterfly the shrimp. (I removed the tails just because it was easier to eat on our salad, but leaving them on makes a pretty presentation.)

Toss the shrimp with 1/4 cup cornstarch to completely coat the shrimp. (Make sure you "open" the butterflied section and coat the entire shrimp.)

Combine the remaining 2 teaspoons cornstarch with 2 teaspoons water in a bowl and set aside.

Pour the oil into a large, wide pan (wok would be perfect, but I use my Le Creuset braiser) and heat over medium heat until hot.

Add the shrimp in batches and deep fry until golden about 45 seconds, turning the shrimp as needed to crisp all sides.

Set the shrimp aside on a cooling rack over a baking sheet or on paper toweling to drain.

Drain the oil from wok, leaving 1 tablespoon.

Reheat the wok and stir-fry the garlic, ginger, and red pepper.

Stir for a few seconds (this will only take seconds or the garlic & ginger may burn), then whisk in the ketchup, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, vinegar, wine, Agave syrup, salt, 1/4 cup water, and the reserved cornstarch mixture.

Cook and stir until the sauce is thick.

Add the shrimp, toss until covered with sauce.

Meanwhile (or even before you start cooking the shrimp) chop the lettuce, use a vegetable peeler to make ribbons of carrot, slice the cucumber, chop the parsley and chives, and slice the green onions.

Toss all together and arrange on salad plates.

Top with the Slippery Shrimp (may drizzle with a creamy dressing, if you choose, but I think the shrimp add enough flavor to the salad).

Serves 2 as a main dish salad and 4-6 as a side.