ROSEMARY LEMON SHRIMP SKEWERS
Rosemary and Lemon is an out of this world flavor combination that works really well on both seafood and poultry. For this recipe, the rosemary serves as both a source of herbaceous smoke flavor, an herb in the marinade, as well as the actual skewer for the shrimp, which makes for AWESOME presentation on and off the grill. The lemon is thinly sliced and layered on the skewer which adds additional flavor on top of the rosemary, lemon and garlic mixture it is marinated in. Luckily, if you don’t have a rosemary plant, you can achieve this same flavor with fresh rosemary you buy at the store. Coupled with the smoky flavor of the charcoal on the Pitbarrel Cooker, this is an addictive recipe that works well as both an appetizer or main course. Note, I made this recipe on my Pitbarrel Cooker which is a super easy to use Barrel Cooker that produces great results with minimum fuss, but this recipe can be made on any grill.
- 1 lb jumbo or extra jumbo size shrimp- (buy the largest you can find, they will work the best for threading onto the Rosemary skewers) shells and tails removed
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- 7-8 rosemary stems plus a few extra sprigs of rosemary for the marinade (1/4 cup rosemary needles are needed for the marinade)
- 8 lemons, use for 2 tbsp zest then slice thinly
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp course Smoked sea salt (if you can’t find smoked sea salt, regular sea salt is okay)
- 1/2 tbsp fresh ground pepper
***If you don’t have rosemary skewers, just use 6-8 bamboo skewers and buy a large bunch of rosemary for the marinade
If you have the rosemary stems, remove the rosemary needles in the middle and set aside. If you don’t have the stems, take your bunch of bunch of rosemary, reserving a few sprigs to throw on the grill, and remove the needles- you will need approximately 1/4 cup of rosemary needles for the marinade. Next, take the rosemary needles/leaves and add to a bowl that will be used for making the marinade. Add the olive oil, garlic and 2 tbsp of lemon zest then combine with a stick blender to create a seasoning paste or “slather”.
Let the shrimp marinate in the slather for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, you can go prepare your grill while they marinate. While the coals are doing their thing in the chimney starter, use a very sharp knife to thinly slice the lemon into 1/8” slices. The thinner the better as they will be more malleable to go onto the skewers. Next, thread the shrimp onto the rosemary skewers and alternate shrimp with lemon slices that are folded in half. If you don’t have the rosemary skewers, just use regular bamboo skewers (don’t forget to soak them in water beforehand).
Prepare your PitBarrel Cooker for cooking on the grill grates. Once your charcoal is ready to go and you are ready to put your skewers on, throw a few rosemary sprigs on the coals for some additional smoke. This will add some nice additional flavor to the shrimp. Get the grill nice and hot and grill the shrimp only a few minutes on each side, looking for them to turn pink and being careful not to overcook. While grilling the shrimp, throw the remaining lemons on the grill until they get charmarks (These will be served with the shrimp and make for great presentation, plus the grill makes them extra juicy for squeezing on the shrimp right before serving) Once they’ve turned pink, take them off and enjoy a flavorful dish that is a true crowd pleaser!
Note: I developed this recipe in partnership with my friends at the Pitbarrel Cooker Company. I only work with companies whose products I use and recommend!