Diva nirvana is sipping and noshing our way around the globe, and what better in these flimsy economic times than a day at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: French escargot with Pinot Noir, American lobster rolls with a lager, Spanish crema catalana with sparkling wine. (The annual fest runs for 6 weeks each fall and wraps up Nov. 8.)
Our favorite taste was this sensuous stew from Rio de Janeiro that perfumes the kitchen with garlic, lime, cilantro and coconuts. Put on a little samba music, sip a sweet caipirinha, chop to the rhythm and pretend it’s suppertime after a day on the beach at Ipanema.
Moqueca de Camarão
(Shrimp Stew with Coconut Milk)
Serves 4 to 6
36 large shrimp, peeled and de-veined
6 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves, divided
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon coarse salt
2 medium yellow onions, chopped, divided
1 (13.5-ounce) can coconut milk
1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
4 cups cooked long-grain white rice
Place shrimp in wide shallow dish. Stir together 2 tablespoons cilantro, lime juice, garlic and salt in a small bowl and pour over shrimp. Turn shrimp to coat and marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes.
Purée half of the chopped onions and the coconut milk in a blender; set aside.
Heat oil in a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add remaining chopped onions and cook until translucent, 5 to 6 minutes. Add tomatoes and 2 tablespoons cilantro, stirring occasionally until tomatoes are soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in coconut milk purée and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in butter.
Add shrimp, pouring any remaining marinade in the skillet. Stir in remaining cilantro. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 5 minutes or just until shrimp turn pink. To serve, spoon over a little hot rice to soak up the delicious broth.