These shrimp cocktails are damn delicious and dangerous as far as summer foods go.
True story. I once made 2 lbs. of this recipe and had some friends over for lunch. I also made our fave Pollo Salsa Verde with Mexican rice for mains. While Mr. Hubby and I were pottering around in the kitchen, our two friends sat on the kitchen stools at our island and polished the whole lot off. No jokes.
When lunch was served, they were sure to mention that as lovely as my mains were they loved the appetizers the most.
Hmmmm.......I wonder why.
Thanks to the years we spent in Arizona we have gained a true appreciation for Southwestern flavors & authentic Mexican cuisine. We also love dried chiles in this aprt of the world with their complex smoky flavors v/s hot that comes from Asian chillies.
Southwestern & Mexican dried chiles like Guajillo, Anjo, Chipotle & Casabel are used less for their heat but the incredible smoky and rich flavor they impart. And they are absolutely magnificent with all kinds of meat and seafood.
My absolute favorite was of using dried ground chipotle is in these shrimp cocktails and we love these so much more to the mayo laden versions that is has become our summer staple. Needless to say, I've based these off the Mexican shrimp cocktails that are tomato juice based often found in mariscos or seafood restaurants all over Mexico. Versions that include a heavy dose of hot serrano chiles paired with a liberal dose Tequila is considered quite the cure for a hangover after a night of fun.
In this Southwestern inspired version, I've paired the smoky heat from the Chipotle comes with the fresh heat from a serrano chile in tomato juice loaded with finely chopped red onions, cilantro and fresh lime juice, not forgetting succulent & plump garlicky shrimp.
Whether scooped out of a bowl with stone ground tortilla chips in the backyard with swigs of Coronas or Dos Equis or turned into ideal picnic fare when served in small mason jars, carried in a cooler filled with ice for a day in the sand or at the park, one thing is sure: Summer just got a tad more sizzlin'!