Shrimp Crostini with Saffron Aioli (+Saffron Giveaway)
This is a recipe that combines two of my favorite ingredients: shrimp and saffron. Specifically, I made a shrimp crostini with saffron aïoli. I flavored the mayonnaise with garlic and freshly ground saffron threads. I placed the shrimp on a bed of toasted bread to create a nice contrast of texture. The taste of the saffron is so intense in the aïoli sauce that it feels almost sinful.
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Yields: 12 appetizers24 raw shrimp
2 tablespoons canola oil
½ onion, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon cayenne powder
1 egg yolk
juice of a lemon (or 2 tablespoons white vinegar)
2 cloves pickled garlic (or fresh garlic), finely minced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey (optional)
½ teaspoon saffron threads
1/3 cup olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper, freshly ground
2 tablespoons curly parsley, finely chopped
Prepping the shrimp:
In a small saucepan, heat the canola oil. Add the onions. Cook until nicely golden and tender. Once the onions are fully cooked, pour in 2 cups of water. Add the shrimp and cayenne powder. Cook until the shrimp become pink. Drain and once they're cool enough to handle, shell and de-vein the black part of the shrimp. Make sure to leave the tip of the tail on, if possible. Repeat the same procedure for each shrimp. Slice them in half, lengthwise.
Prepping the saffron: In a mortar and pestle, grind 3/4 teaspoon of saffron threads into a fine powder.
How to make your aïoli:
Note: All the ingredients should be at room temperature.
In a bowl, whisk the egg yolk. Add garlic, honey (if used) and Dijon mustard. Stir continuously and very slowly add the oil, a little at a time until fully combined. Whisk until emulsified. Add lemon juice and ¼ teaspoon ground saffron. Stir until the color is uniform. Season with salt and pepper.
If the sauce is too thick add 1-2 tablespoons of boiling water. If it's too watery, add the 2 extra tablespoons of oil. If you've tried both solutions (boiling water or oil) and the mayonnaise isn't set, whisk in another egg yolk with lemon juice (or vinegar).
Let sit at room temperature.
At the last minute, add the remaining ground saffron to the aïoli; that way specks of saffron will be visible in the sauce.
On a serving platter, place the toasted bread. Spread a thick layer of aïoli. Top with 4 pieces of shrimp and garnish with parsley.
You can find pickled garlic in most Asian markets.
Check out the rest of my appetizer recipes.Published By: on December 22, 2011.