This weekend I'm catering a special anniversary dinner for my friends, David and Shannon. They had a baby last summer and due to some digestive issues the baby had, Shannon has had to cut all gluten and dairy from her diet. Dave wanted to give her a special meal - thought about taking her out to a restaurant - but because of her dietary needs, he was afraid she wouldn't be able to enjoy much and asked if I could come up with something.
So tomorrow night I'm making them a 4-course dinner. Tonight I did a trial run of the appetizer to make sure everything tasted good. Well, smack my butt and call me Sally ... it was amazing!
This is sort of a spin off of Cheesecake Factory's Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes but I added grilled shrimp. Just so you know, this is 100% completely gluten and dairy free (we put some sour cream on ours but you can use vegan sour cream or leave it off)!! You'd never know by the taste.
Here's how I made it.
TAMALE CORN CAKE
1/2 cup butter (I used a vegan butter), softened
2 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups corn
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup masa (corn flour)
2 Tbsp flour (I used sweet rice flour found in the Asian aisle - it's not grainy at all!)
Cream butter using a mixer. Add the corn, sugar, and salt. Mix well. Add masa and flour. Mix together. Divide and form into patties (this made 6 patties). I used my electric griddle to cook these. I set my temp on 400*. If you don't have a griddle, use a cast iron or regular skillet over medium heat. Fry until both sides are nicely browned. Remove. You can hold these in an oven until the shrimp is done - or just time everything so it all comes together at the same time.
1 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp paprika
Put the shrimp in a bowl and add all the ingredients. Mix well. Skewer and set aside. Grill on the BBQ until both sides are pink. Don't over cook!
PICO DE GALLO
1 Roma tomato, seeded and finely diced
4 green onions, sliced
2 Tbsp chopped cilantro
1/2 jalapeno, finely diced
1/2 lime, squeezed
Mix all ingredients together. Set aside.
To plate, you want to spoon some salsa verde on your plate. I cheated and bought jarred salsa because I didn't need a lot and if I made it homemade, I'd have way too much left over. After you spoon some salsa down, place a tamale cake in the center. Pull your shrimp from the skewer and lay them all pretty like in a row. Spoon on some pico and then put on a slice of avocado and a dollop of sour cream (or vegan sour cream).
Here's to hoping my friends enjoy this appetizer as much as we did!