What’s the No. 1 sport in Dallas in August? Nope, not Cowboys training camp — complaining about the heat. Aaron Henschen, the executive chef at the Del Frisco’s Grille in Southlake, devised a few home-cook seasonal recipes that will make that Texas sun easier to handle. For your cooking pleasure, we share one here: his take on marinated summer shrimp tacos in pesto with slaw and brown rice.
3/4 cup basil leaves (or cilantro, if desired)
1/4 cup parsley leaves
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
4 tablespoons of chopped almonds
2 lbs. of shrimp
1 cup short grain brown rice
6–8 Roma tomatoes
1 lb. jicama, deskinned and diced into 1/2-in. cubes
1/4 cup chopped basil or cilantro
1 lime, zested and juiced
1/4 to 1/2 cup mayo
2 cups shredded green cabbage
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
16 grape tomatoes, halved
2–4 whole ears of corn
salt, pepper, spices to taste.
Make the pesto first, combining basil/cilantro, parlsey, garlic and almonds in a food processor; pulse for 30 seconds. Add 6–8 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon Parmesan, plus salt and pepper to taste. Mix. Set into refrigerator.
Next, prepare shrimp, peeling off tail and shell —de-vein and rinse. Add shrimp to a plastic bag and coat thoroughly with pesto. Marinate for at least four hours in refrigerator.
Next, prepare the rice mixture. Dice tomatoes in half, and coat in 4 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon kosher salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper. Roast on a foil-lined baking sheet for 1 hour at 350. Pour olive oil in a sauce pan and add rice, making sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom. Continue toasting for 5–8 mins. Pour in 2 cups chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add roasted tomatoes. Cover and put saucepan in over, cooking at 325 for about 30 mins. or until at desired doneness.
To make the slaw, peel back leaves of corn-on-the-cob, remove silk and return leaves over kernels; soak in water 10 mins., then cook on grill until tender; allow to cool.
While cooling, sauté grape tomatoes in olive oil about 3 mins. Cut corn from cob and add to bowl with lime. Soak 15 mins. then add jicama, basil/cilantro, zest, mayo, cabbage and vinegar.
Now, grill the shrimp at 350, about 3 mins. each side, squeezing lime juice over them. Cool and chop into bite-sized pieces. Heat up some flour or corn tortillas on the grill. Assemble, starting with the rice, topped by the slaw and shrimp, then your favorite salsa.
— Arnold Wayne Jones
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 21, 2015.