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Mexican Molcajete Shrimp

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  • Prep 15 min
  • Total 35 min
  • Servings 8
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by: Leslie Limon
Updated Jul 20, 2017
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  • 1 lb tomatillos, without the paper husk
  • Dried chile de árbol peppers, without the stem (to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter, unsalted
  • 1/2 medium-sized onion, sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 lb shrimp, without the peeled and deveined
  • 1 Mexican molcajete or stone mortar


  • 1
    Start by boiling the tomatillos and chiles de árbol in two cups of water. Boil until completely cooked, then let cool for 10 minutes. Afterward, purée the tomatillos and peppers along with the boiled water. Season with salt as desired.
  • 2
    Pre-heat the molcajete (stone mortar) in the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit-this step isn’t necessary, but I do it to keep the shrimp hot while at the table.
  • 3
    Separately, in a medium-sized skillet add the olive oil and butter; place over medium-high heat and let the butter completely melt before adding the sliced onion. Sauté for one minute then stir-in the chopped garlic. Cook for about 30 seconds and incorporate the shrimp. Stir occasionally and cook until the shrimp have begun to turn orange in color. When ready, pour the tomatillo salsa over the shrimp and simmer until the sauce begins to boil.
  • 4
    Using oven mitts remove the molcajete from the oven and place over a heat-proof surface or dish (to avoid burning your table!) To finish, spoon the cooked shrimp with tomatillo sauce into the molcajete and garnish with diced avocado and queso fresco. Accompany with toast or corn tortillas and enjoy!

Expert Tips

  • tip 1
    If you don’t like spicy food, only use one crushed chile de árbol to give flavor to your dish while still controlling the level of spiciness.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe

More About This Recipe

  • The Mexican molcajete is a kitchen tool that has been used for generations to grind and mash ingredients for creating salsas and guacamoles. But did you know that you can also use it to serve dishes like this delicious and picante shrimp? Try introducing your family to this lavish meal- it’s much easier to prepare than you think.
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