I’m always looking for new ideas for holiday appetizers. This week I’ve been trying out some ideas with shrimp and Kerrygold unsalted butter, and I’m excited to share the results with you! Each dish begins with shrimp sautéed in butter and garlic. You can cook your own or buy them already cooked, but I prefer the uncooked, tail-on shrimp from the frozen food section.
Garlic Butter Shrimp
2 tablespoons Kerrygold unsalted butter
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 pounds frozen, uncooked, tail-on shrimp
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Thaw the shrimp by following the instructions on the package. Melt the butter in a skillet, add the garlic and the raw shrimp in a single layer. Stir over medium heat until the shrimp are pink and cooked through, about 4 minutes. You may need to cook the shrimp in several batches. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer the shrimp from the skillet to a serving bowl with a slotted spoon. Reserve the liquid in the skillet to make sauce.
Now for the crostini!
Shrimp Crostini with Avocado Butter
1 baguette, cut into slices 1/2 inch thick
1 shrimp for each slice of baguette
2-3 teaspoons Avocado Butter per slice
First, make the avocado butter. While it is firming up in the refrigerator, cut a baguette into 1/2 inch slices. Spread Avocado Butter onto each slice of baguette and place onto an un-greased baking sheet in a single layer. Slide the baking sheet into the broiler (set to medium broil) and watch until the avocado butter begins to bubble and the edges of the bread are golden brown. Remove from the broiler. Place one cooked shrimp on top of each crostini and serve warm.
4 tablespoons Kerrygold unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup mashed avocado
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
Using a fork, mash the butter and avocado together, add the other ingredients and continue mixing together until smooth. Place the avocado butter into the refrigerator for 20 minutes, or until it begins to get firm. Use on crostini or as a topping for fish or chicken.
I’ll bet you’re wondering what kind of avocado I’m using. You’re correct if you believe that avocados are not in season during the month of December in California…because the popular Hass avocados won’t be harvested until spring. There are several winter varieties of avocado, however…and the ones I’m using today are the Bacon variety. You probably won’t find these in stores outside of California, since they are produced in limited quantities. Look for them at farmers’ markets or from California growers who ship direct to consumers. We still have a few Bacon trees in our avocado groves, so I’ll have them to use during the holiday season. You can use any avocado available to you in this recipe.
Bacon avocados are one of the “green skin” varieties that are in season from December into early spring. They have a more delicate flavor and the fruit is not as buttery as late season Hass or Reed avocados. California Bacon avocados are wonderful in guacamole and have the perfect consistency for avocado butter since they have lower oil content early in the season. (And no, they don’t really taste like bacon. They’re named for James Bacon, a farmer who developed the variety in 1954.) They are ripe when slightly soft…do not let them get mushy or turn black. The skins will still be green when the fruit is ready to eat.
If you’d like to try Bacon avocados, check http://www.CaliforniaAvocadosDirect.com. If they’re in season you will find them on the website for our family’s avocado farm and you can order them. They’ll be delivered by priority mail. Sometimes we offer sampler packs with 2 or 3 different varieties to try!
These Shrimp Crostini with Avocado Butter are the perfect appetizer for a family get-together or a holiday party with friends. I hope you’ll try them!
Stay tuned for my next post! We’ll be making a garlic cream sauce to use with the rest of that shrimp for a hearty winter supper, perfect for a holiday party!
Kerrygold USA provided me with Kerrygold Unsalted Butter to use in this recipe. I was not compensated to write this post. All opinions are mine.