Brazilian Coconut Shrimp Pizza
I’m infatuated with Brazilian cuisine. It’ll probably be my next food obsession.
I’ve been tinkering around with it lately, mostly because of Mariane, our Brazilian temporary houseguest. She’s a little homesick and misses food from her native country. I research dishes, try to create them, and she helps me with the authenticity.
Now, obviously this pizza isn’t authentic Brazilian cuisine, but the flavors are true. We had a little leftover coconut shrimp, I was hungry, so I tossed it on a crust. It’s a little unusual, but I really like it.
Pepper sauces can be quite addicting — not only do they add a bit of heat, they also impart a bit of vinegary punch that brightens up any dish. It’s worth the effort to find Pirata or Malagueta pepper sauces in Brazilian specialty shops or online, but Sriracha could be substituted in a pinch.
Brazilian Coconut Shrimp Pizza
- 1 tsp. dende oil or vegetable oil, divided
- 1/4 cup chopped white onion
- 1/4 cup chopped green pepper
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger
- 1/2 tsp. Brazilian spice mixture, divided, recipe follows
- 1/2 Roma tomato, chopped
- 1 Tbs. rum
- 1 H&L Pizza Crust, or homemade crust, partially baked
- 1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup grated jack cheese
- 4-5 shrimp (size 21/25), peeled, deveined and cut into 3 or 4 pieces
- 1 Tbs. coconut milk
- Juice from 1/2 lime
- 1 Tbs. chopped toasted cashews
- 1 Tbs. chopped cilantro
- Brazilian Malagueta or Pirata pepper sauce, for garnish
Invert a baking sheet and place it directly on a rack in lower half of oven; preheat to 450°.
Heat small skillet over medium-high heat; when hot, drizzle in 1/2 teaspoon of the dende oil. Add onion, pepper and a pinch of salt; saute until vegetables just begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in garlic, ginger and 1/4 tsp of the spice mixture; saute until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Stir in tomato and cook another 20 seconds. Deglaze with rum; cook and stirring until liquid is gone. Transfer to bowl and set aside.
Brush entire top surface of pizza crust with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Top with cheese and spiced onion-pepper mixture. Slide pizza onto the inverted baking sheet. Bake until cheese is bubbly and crust is golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes, but check after 4, rotating occasionally to ensure even baking.
Meanwhile, place same small skillet over high heat; when hot, drizzle in remaining 1/2 teaspoon of dende oil. Add shrimp, pinch of salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of spice mixture; saute about 30 seconds. Stir in coconut milk and cook until sauce is thickened and shrimp is barely cooked through, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat, stir in lime juice and check seasoning; set aside.
When pizza is done, transfer to a cutting board. Top with shrimp, drizzling coconut sauce around. Sprinkle with cashews, cilantro and pepper sauce; cut into wedges.
Brazilian Spice Mixture
1 Tbs. cumin
1/2 Tbs. dried parsley
1/2 Tbs. turmeric
1/2 Tbs. white peppercorns
1 tsp. chile flakes
Toast spices in small pan over medium-low heat until fragrant, about a minute. Cool and grind in clean coffee grinder or spice grinder.