When asked what their favorite food is, many people respond with steak, lobster, prime rib or salmon. For me, it is the seafood burdened with a bad name: shrimp.
Whether it be giant, served as an appetizer in an iced glass with a lemon wedge and garnish at an expensive restaurant; medium, cooked in a scampi, garlic or tomato sauce by your mother; or tiny, mixed with rice dishes, Chinese dishes or Mexican tacos, it is the mighty shrimp that enhances your meal.
When invited to a dinner party or potluck dinner, Joyce goes to Dave’s and buys a shrimp ring. Everyone else brings home their serving dishes with their leftover tuna casserole and meatloaf, but you can be certain that the shrimp dish has been picked clean.
Most good restaurants (and some bad ones) have shrimp in some form on their menus. Here are our favorites:
TWIN OAKS – Baked Stuffed Shrimp: We’ve been eating the signature dish at Twin Oaks since we were introduced to it in 1965. I enjoy mine with “mashed in the middle” and a side of cole slaw. Joyce prefers a side of pasta.
LEMONGRASS – Spicy shrimp with Lemongrass was our first meal at the popular Warwick restaurant, and it was then that we know that this place was a cut above other Chinese restaurants in Rhode Island.
GREENWICH OYSTER BAR – Shrimp Scampi requires just the right amount of garlic, oil and spices to please my daughter Robin, who introduced us to this tiny treasure in the heart of East Greenwich.
CHAMPLINS – Offers the best fisherman’s platter in the state. What could be finer than sitting on the upper deck, watching the fishing boats return to Galilee, with the sea gulls encircling the boats, while a cool breeze blows across the channel and the Block Island Fairy returns to port. Lobster, fish, clams, scallops and corn adorn the plate, but it’s the shrimp that outshines everything else.
CALIENTE MEXICAN GRILL – Has the best and most plentiful shrimp tacos in Rhode Island. Add some garnish and a few drops of fresh lime juice and you’re in fish heaven, whether you are eating at the URI site in Kingston or Thayer Street on Providence’s East Side.
POCO LOCO – The food truck proprietors opened up a restaurant within walking distance of our house. While not on the menu, at least once a week they serve a shrimp “po” boy that is better than what I had in New Orleans. Served on flat bread with a tangy breading, it is to die for. I keep lobbying them to have it permanently on the menu. If they do, Joyce will never cook.
Have your favorite shrimp dish? Let us know.