Shrimp and Yucatan Amarillo

Shrimp and Yucatan Amarillo

The Yucatan cuisine is filled with grilling, sauces and marinades. You can see the Yucatecan commitment to marinades in all manner of dishes: camaron ceviche, pulpo en escabeche (octopus first cooked in olive oil, then marinated in acid overnight), and marinated beef that’s then grilled, chopped up, and fried. Here we have grilled shrimp with a great dipping sauce. Influences? Spanish, Mayan, Asian and Lebanese.


  • 16 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined

  • 4 tablespoons Thai fish sauce like nam pla

  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided, plus more for grill

  • 1/2 cup Yucatan Amarillo

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin

  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric

  • A handful of cilantro sprigs finely chopped

  • 1 habanero seeded and chopped

  • ½ cup red sweet pepper chopped

  • 1/3 cup onion diced small

  • 2 garlic cloves minced

  • 1″ pieces ginger, peeled chopped

  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice

  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar (opt.)



  1. Combine shrimp, 2 tablespoons of the fish sauce, 2 tablespoons oil, the cumin and the turmeric in a large bowl; toss to coat. Let this rest for 30 minutes.

  2. Add about 1 tablespoon of oil to a small sauté pan and sauté the vegetables until soft.

  3. When soft, add them to a food processor or blender with the rest of the fish sauce, the lime juice, the Yucatan Amarillo, the sugar and half of the cilantro and process until a coarse mixture forms.

  4. Transfer the dipping sauce to a small sauce pan and gently simmer for 15 minutes to thicken. About 5 minutes before the sauce is ready, add the rest of the cilantro.

  5. Build a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill, or heat a gas grill to high or grill on a grill pan on the stove top.

  6. Oil grill grates.

  7. Shake the excess liquid from the shrimp and place the shrimp on the grill. Cook, turning occasionally, until the shrimp are charred and cooked through, 5-6 minutes.

  8. Serve immediately with sauce.

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