Shrimp are a go-to warm-weather appetizer, but, when wrapped in bacon and given the added kick of jalapeño, they’re very near perfect.
Ingredients: For the sauce
Ingredients: For the shrimp
- Make the BBQ Sauce: Heat the bacon drippings in a small saucepan over medium-high. Add the onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the chopped garlic, and cook, stirring often, for 1 minute. Stir in the salt, garlic powder, and dry mustard, and cook, stirring often, until the spices are toasted and fragrant and the onions are a deep maroon color, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the cherry cola and vinegar, and cook, stirring often, about 2 minutes. Stir in the ketchup. Bring the sauce to a boil, and cook until reduced to about 2 cups and the mixture coats the back of a spoon, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the Shrimp: Heat a cast-iron skillet or grill pan over medium. Cut a long ¼-inch-deep slit in the inner curve of each shrimp; insert 1 jalapeño strip. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Wrap each shrimp tightly with 1 bacon piece. Set on a plate, seam sides down.
- Place the bacon-wrapped shrimp, seam sides down, in the hot skillet, and cook, turning occasionally, until the bacon is crisp and the shrimp are just cooked through, 5 to 6 minutes. Serve the shrimp with the BBQ sauce.
Make ahead: the BBQ sauce will hold up to 2 weeks in the fridge. If you’re prepping for a party, the shrimp can be wrapped ahead of time and cooked later.
Trick technique: if you’re someone who loves their bacon in the morning, start saving the drippings in a jar for uses like this one!
Excerpted from Valerie’s Home Cooking by Valerie Bertinelli. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Time Inc. New York, NY. All rights reserved.