Weeknight Shorts: Take In!

I try to eat a healthy and varied diet, but I will not pretend that I'm above craving some fried chicken or Chinese takeout once in a while. But when that craving hits, I aim to be in charge of what's going in my body by making as much of what I eat at home. So that means Honey Walnut Shrimp to tame that takeout beast.

This creamy dish is traditionally swimming in heavy sauce after being deep-fried. I lighten the dish without losing flavor by making the breading a great seasoned cornstarch mixture, making the sauce with just three ingredients, and tossing it gently with the cooked shrimp at the end of the process instead of leaving it swimming in sweet mayonnaise. The end result has what I consider a much better texture and flavor than the original and with just twenty minutes of cooking time invested, you'd be hard-pressed to be sitting down to takeout in that time!

I highly recommend letting a rice cooker or Instant Pot handle the rice for you and you can always toss together some sliced cucumbers with a light vinegar-based dressing to brighten it all a bit more. Then a bit of green tea or dry cider and dinner is done!

Honey Walnut Shrimp

  • 6 tablespoons mayonnaise, divided
  • 1 pound large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 teaspoons Bangkok Blend or other seasoning blend
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ⅓ cup cooking fat of your choice
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • Hot cooked rice
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions

In a bowl, toss 3 tablespoons of the mayonnaise and the shrimp together to coat evenly.

Mix the Bangkok Blend and cornstarch together in a shallow bowl.

Working one at a time, dredge the shrimp in the cornstarch mixture, pressing to coat. Heat the cooking fat of your choice in a skillet over medium-high heat.

Working in batches, add the shrimp to the skillet, 8-10 at a time, and fry until evenly golden brown and crispy, about 1-2 minutes on each side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

In a large bowl, whisk together the remaining 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise, the honey, and the soy sauce. Add the hot shrimp and toss well to evenly coat. Serve immediately, over hot rice and topped with chopped walnuts and sliced green onions.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes