In the summer, I never grow tired of shrimp. Whether it's thrown on the grill or tossed cold in a salad, it's light and satisfying this time of year. But I find where it really shines is next to corn; its flavor pairs perfectly with the extra-sweet kernels. That's why these crispy, smoky fritters are exactly what I want to eat through the rest of the summer.
When paired with a simple green salad and maybe some crusty bread, these corn and shrimp fritters make the kind of light dinner that's meant for sticky summer evenings. A glass of crisp white wine alongside is welcomed and encouraged.
Marrying the Flavor of Corn and Shrimp
The key here is blending some of the uncooked shrimp into a paste, which acts as a binder and helps marry its flavor with the corn kernels, so you're getting the sweetness of both ingredients in every bite.
Add Smoke Without the Grill
Yes, both grilled corn and shrimp are perfection, but if you don't have a grill (like me), you can mimic the results you get on the grill by adding an ingredient like smoked paprika to the mix. It gives just a touch of that just-grilled flavor to the fritters without overpowering them.
Smoky Corn and Shrimp Fritters
1 pound uncooked peeled, deveined medium shrimp, thawed if frozen
2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 4 ears)
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Lemon wedges, for serving
Place 2/3 of the shrimp in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment and pulse into a smooth paste.
Transfer the shrimp paste to a large bowl. Coarsely chop the remaining shrimp and add it to the bowl. Add the corn, scallions, parsley, smoked paprika, and salt and stir to combine.
Form the mixture into 8 (2 1/2-inch-wide) patties and place on a large plate. Cover and chill up to overnight.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add 4 of the patties and cook until golden-brown on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the patties and cook until the shrimp is opaque and the fritters are crisp, 1 to 2 minutes more.
Transfer the fritters to a clean plate and repeat with frying the remaining patties. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.
- Storage: Fritters are best enjoyed immediately, but leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Food styling by Barrett Washburne