Easy Chinese-Style Appetizers, Katie Chin Style

Chefs, Cooking, Recipes By Sep 27, 2016

Chinese tapas, yes!

Cookbook author-caterer, Katie Chin, learned how to cook from her Chinese mother. She helped in the kitchen with her late mother, Leeann Chin, an award-winning restaurateur. In 2003, the two starred in a PBS national cooking show “Double Happiness.”

I joined her in the Melissa’s Produce kitchen to test out some of her favorite recipes from her newest book, “Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook” (Tuttle, $24.95).

Everything she cooked was delicious, but I seem to focus on appetizers this time of year. Home entertaining around the holidays always requires delicious starters – hors d’ oeuvres with palate allure and eye appeal.


Her six-ingredient Firecracker Shrimp recipe teams shrimp with matchstick carrots and strips of spring roll wrappers (much easier than batter).

She says you only need about 10 minutes to make them.

(Yes, maybe after you practice once!)


Fried crisp, they are served with a simple-spicy dipping sauce of mayonnaise and Sriracha chili sauce.

Watch the crisp-bubble dance in this short video …

Chin’s Firecracker Shrimp
Yield: 6 servings as appetizers
12 shelled (tail left intact) and deveined large raw shrimp
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt, divided use
4 spring roll wrappers1 large carrot, peeled, cut into 3-by-1/4-inch matchsticks
1 egg, beaten
Oil for deep frying
Dripping Sauce: 4 tablespoons mayonnaise mixed with 1 to 2 tablespoons Sriracha (to suit your taste)

  1. Cut each spring roll wrapper into thirds to make 12 long narrow strips.
  2. Place carrot matchsticks in small bowl. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt and set aside. Sprinkle shrimp with remaining garlic salt.
  3. Brush top third of each spring roll strip with egg. Place shrimp at bottom of strip. Place a carrot matchstick on top of shrimp. Roll each shrimp and carrot up tightly in the spring roll strip (egg will hold it together). The tail of the shrimp and the carrot should be protruding from one end to resemble a fire cracker. Repeat the process until all the wrappers are filled.
  4. In a large wok or deep skillet heat 2 to 3 inches of oil to 350 degrees. Fry the shrimp rolls until golden brown, about 2 minutes, turning 2 to 3 times. Drain on sheet pan lined with paper towels. Serve with dipping sauce.

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