Spicy Coconut Greens With Tomatoes and Shrimp
This dish is loosely inspired by laing, a Filipino dish of dried taro leaves cooked in coconut milk that is traditionally made with pork and bagoong, a fermented fish or shrimp paste. This is quite a diversion, prepared with braised chard and topped with burst tomatoes and seared shrimp. You use only half the chard stems here, so you should reserve the extra stems to throw into soups, stews or your morning eggs. Get ahead by making these coconut greens up to two days in advance, then reheating to serve; the flavors will only improve over time. Serve with jasmine rice for a complete meal.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 2tablespoons virgin coconut oil
- 1small yellow onion, finely chopped
- 2pounds Swiss chard, leaves roughly shredded (about 7 cups), half the stems reserved then cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 8garlic cloves, finely grated
- 1(2 1/2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated (about 1 ½ teaspoons)
- ¾teaspoon red-pepper flakes (omit if you prefer less heat)
- 1(13-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk, 2 tablespoons coconut milk reserved
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1tablespoon lime juice plus 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges for serving
- 1 ½teaspoons fish sauce
- 3tablespoons virgin coconut oil
- ½teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- ½teaspoon ground turmeric
- 3red bird’s-eye chiles, pierced a few times with a knife
- 10ounces datterini or cherry tomatoes
- ½pound medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and tails removed
Step 1Start with the greens: Heat the coconut oil in a large saucepan over medium-high. Once hot, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened but not colored, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chard stems, garlic, ginger and red-pepper flakes, and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Add the shredded chard leaves, one large handful at a time, stirring each batch to wilt before adding the next. (They won’t seem to fit at first glance, but don’t worry; they’ll cook down.)
Step 2Pour in the coconut milk along with ½ teaspoon salt and a good grind of pepper, and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat down to medium and cook, stirring often so the bottom doesn’t scorch, for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the mixture is thick and the coconut milk almost completely reduces. Off the heat, stir in the lime juice and fish sauce, and set aside.
Step 3Meanwhile, make the topping: To a medium skillet, add 2 tablespoons of the coconut oil and melt over medium heat. Add the paprika, ¼ teaspoon of the turmeric, the chiles, tomatoes, 3 tablespoons water and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the tomatoes have burst and softened but still retain their shape. Keep warm on low heat.
Step 4Meanwhile, toss the shrimp in a bowl with the remaining ¼ teaspoon turmeric, plus ¼ teaspoon salt and a good grind of pepper. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon coconut oil to a large skillet and heat over high. Once it’s very hot, add half the shrimp and cook for about 1½ minutes on each side, or until nicely colored and just cooked through. As they’re ready, stir them into the tomato mixture. Continue in the same way with the remaining shrimp.
Step 5When ready to serve, transfer the coconut greens to a large shallow serving bowl and spoon the tomato and shrimp mixture on top. Drizzle with the reserved coconut milk, and serve with the lime wedges to squeeze alongside.