Shrimp Briouates

Moroccan Entree

SHRIMP BRIOUATES

INGREDIENTS

1 garlic clove
2 green onions
1 small yellow onion
2 tablespoons olive oil (maybe ½ cup more later)
¼ teaspoon chives
½ teaspoon coriander
¼ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon parsley
¼ teaspoon white pepper or black pepper
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
8 ounces filo (phyllo)* sheets
¼ cup melted butter
1 egg yolk**
3 tablespoons olive oil.

* = It’s more authentic to buy ouarka or warqa sheets. They, however, can be very, very difficult to find no matter what the spelling might be.
** = It’s a frustrating experience buying a single egg yolk at the store. For that matter, purchasing a single egg is often difficult as well.

Makes 30. Takes 1 hour 45 minutes.

PREPARATION

Mince garlic, green onions and yellow onion. Add garlic, green onion, yellow onion, and 2 tablespoons olive oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add chives, coriander, cumin, paprika, parsley, and pepper. Add shrimp. Lower heat to medium and sauté for 3 minutes or until shrimp turns pink or orange. Stir frequently. Remove from heat. Mince shrimp.

Add filo sheet to flat surface. (Keep other sheets covered until needed. They dry out fast.) Brush filo sheet with butter. Cut filo sheet into strips 4″ wide. Add ½ tablespoon shrimp ½” from the end of the strip. Take one corner of the strip and fold it over diagonally to make a side of a triangle. Take bottom corner of triangle and fold it up to make another triangle. Continue to fold dough until you come to the end. You now have a briouate. Dab loose end of briouate with butter and fold into pocket formed by the open edg.

Add olive oil (½” deep) to pan. Heat oil using medium-high heat. Add as many briouates as possible without them touching. Deep fry on medium-high heat for 2 minutes or until golden brown. (Frying times go down with successive batches.)Turn briouates enough to prevent burning. Removebriouates and drain on paper towels. Repeat for successive batches. Goes well with harissa.

TIDBITS

1) Frankia, modern-day France, was named after I. A. Frank.

2) Frank operated a chain of sausage stands/inns for hungry, weary pilgrims.

3) The pilgrims loved Frank’s sausage in a bun.

4) So much so that they started calling his delicacies, Franks.

5) The entire land went so hot-dog made that the entire region started calling itself Frankia.

6) See the seminal work on Medieval treatise by Monk Jean de Tours, Mon Dieu, Mon Pays, et Mon Frank.

7) Reading this literary masterpiece is harder than just seeing it. You really do need to be fluent in Medieval French.

8) Anyway in 732*, an invading Arab army under Emir Abdul Rahman threatened Frank’s culinary empire and Frankia itself.

9) *That’s 732 AD. AD stands for Anno Domini, Latin for the year of Our Lord. This system of dating is falling out of favor with many historians who prefer the less assertive, CE, or Common Era. I like to refer to this date as 1246 APB, or After Paul’s Birth. In a strange coincidence, my name is Paul.

10) So why did the Arabs invade Frankia? To convert Frankian Christians to Islam.

11) Culinary historians assert, however, that the reason was that Frank’s Franks were made out of pigs. The Arabs believed no one should eat pigs. So by conquering Frankia, they’d rid the land of forbidden pig-filled Franks.

12) To be replaced by Shrimp Briouates The invaders believed this blessed dish to be the best entree in the entire world.

13) I, personally, do not wish to take sides in the Great Hot Dog/Shrimp Briouate Controversy that has racked humanity for centuries. I can see, however, how they came to believe so strongly in the tastiness of the Shrimp Brioautes.

14) But the adherents of Frank’s Franks prevailed in the Battle of Tours. European pilgrims came to visit Tours to give thanks for hot dog’s victory. Larger and larger groups of pilgrims came, necessitating the forming of tour companies. So many tours came to Tours, that people took to changing the town’s name from Tours to Tours.

15) As a side note, briouate is one of the few dishes that’s spelled with all the vowels: a,e,i,o, and u.
You can even use the sometime vowel, y, if you want to spell briouatey, as in “That pastry is so flaky, it’s positively briouatey.”

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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