A sweet tangle of onions complement these shrimps with spicy overtones. To guard against overcooking, use large shrimp (15 to 20 to a pound or 450 grams). Although the heat in this dish is a personal preference, I don't like it too hot, as I want the delicate lemon grass taste to come through. Sriracha is an Asian hot sauce. Serve this dish with rice or rice noodles.
Servings: 2 as a main, 4 as an appetizer
Ready time: 50 minutes (including marinating)
2 stalks fresh lemon grass
1 tablespoon minced garlic
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 to 2 teaspoons Sriracha
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound (500 grams) large shrimp, shelled
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 red onions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 cup slivered mint
1/4 cup slivered basil
Discard outer leaves of lemon grass. Cut off stalks, leaving about 2 inches from the base. Bash the 2-inch pieces with the blade of a knife, then chop finely. This should measure about 2 to 3 tablespoons.
Combine lemon grass, half of garlic, fish sauce, Sriracha and 1 tablespoon oil in a bowl. Stir in shrimp, season with salt and pepper and marinate for 30 minutes.
Pour remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or skillet on medium-high heat. Add onions and stir-fry for 4 minutes or until softened. Add remaining garlic and cook 2 minutes longer or until onions turn golden.
Stir in shrimp, marinade and sugar. Stir-fry for 3 minutes or until shrimp is just cooked and pink. Add lime juice and herbs, leaving a few herbs for garnish. Continue to cook for about 1 minute longer, stirring, or until herbs are wilted.
Garnish with remaining herbs and serve at once.