Steamed Drunken Shrimps

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When my Grandma was still with us, her birthday party was one of the many annual events where the big family came together to celebrate. It was a noisy affair, with as many as four to five big tables full of aunties and uncles and cousins all huddled together for a feisty evening dinner.

Steamed Drunken Shrimps
Steamed Drunken Shrimps


Drunken shrimps was one of the family favorite menu, but I particularly remember this one time where a waiter brought out a glass bowl with live prawns in it. She then poured some alcohol, covered the lid, then vigorously shake the bowl for maybe 30 seconds or so. When she stopped, the shrimps were kind of limp, no longer jumping around. She lit a match, opened the lid, tossed the match into the bowl, quickly covered the bowl while the entire thing caught fire. When the fire died down, all the shrimps have turned pink. Alcohol was the first thing I smelled when the lid was opened. I was about 10 years old, not sure if I should be excited or horrified, but the shrimps were good.

Steamed Drunken Shrimps
Steamed Drunken Shrimps


After painting a pretty horrible account, fear not that my drunken shrimps recipe will be decidedly more humane. For one, we start with dead shrimps. Fresh, but dead, okay? And no crazy flambé is involved, just simple wholesome steaming. ♥

Steamed Drunken Shrimps
Cuisine: Chinese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • 250 gram shrimps
  • 3 scallions
  • 3 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (Chinese: Shao Xing Hua Tiao Jiu)
  • 1 inch fresh ginger, chopped into 5 thin slices
  • 2 tablespoon goji berries, soaked in cold water for 5 minutes.
  1. Prepare a steamer.
  2. Trim off the shrimps feelers (antennae) and tail ends with a scissor. Place on a steamed proof serving bowl or plate. If you are using a plate, choose one that is deeper, not a shallow one.
  3. Separate white parts and green parts of the scallions. Chop the white parts into thick diagonal slices, and cut the green parts into thin ribbons.
  4. Top the shrimps with Shaoxing wine, chopped fresh ginger, chopped white parts of scallions, and goji berries.
  5. Steam the shrimps until pink, around 3 minutes.
  6. Remove from steamer, garnish with green scallion ribbons, and serve immediately.



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