18, Aug 2007
Shrimp/Rice Patties

since I started experimenting with my “kroots” I’ve been thinking about what to put inside them. following on the recipe with the turkey burger, I started thinking about bringing my old shrimp cake idea into the kroot world. I thought of layering it with rice, but then decided to try a shrimp/rice patty, using “broken” rice to make it stickier (the red rice I wanted to use being somewhat coarse and grainy, like brown rice). the result is a patty that tastes fairly interesting in itself and should be good in a kroot, roll, or who-knows-what.

1/2 c red rice
1 c water
1/2 lb shrimp, food-processored into a paste
a few green onions, white and light green sections diced fine
1 tbsp lemongrass paste
1 tsp green curry paste
1 egg, beaten
salt, white pepper, olive oil

“break” the rice in a coffee/spice grinder in small batches, 2-3 pulses each. you should see some powder, a number of split grains, and some still-whole grains. put the rice and water in a small saucepan on high and bring to a boil. reduce heat, cover, and simmer 20 minutes. mix the rice with the shrimp at a ratio of about 2:1 rice. add the green onions and mix thoroughly. add lemongrass, curry paste, and 1-2 teaspoons each of salt and white pepper. add in the egg and mix to a hamburger-like consistency. pan fry the patties and finish at medium heat with the lid on the pan.
pretty good! the flavors of the onions, lemongrass, and curry paste all come through nicely but not overpoweringly. the shrimp is pretty subtle, but provides a sort of seafoody background. the rice makes a nice texture, especially where it’s fried and crispier around the outside. the consistency of the patties is a lot like hamburgers, but the flavor is nothing like meat. they should be good in a roll or kroot, especially paired with pineapple, mango, or papaya, as well as lettuce, cilantro, or thai basil.
I’d like to bring out the shrimp flavor a bit more, but I’m not sure how (more shrimp!). given that the flavors lean in a vietnamese direction, a little lime juice might go nicely, though perhaps just as a component in a sauce or relish. I’d probably also reuse the lemongrass or curry paste in a sauce to bring out that flavor, but the amount in the patty is about right. a similar patty with pork instead of shrimp would probably be good, as might a patty of just rice and flavorings. and using different kinds of rice could be good — white rice would probably be very tasty, though not as healthy or hearty.