Tag Archives: cayenne

Roasted Broccoli With Shrimp

Roasted Broccoli With Shrimp

My dear friend, Denise, served this delicious dish to me a couple of years ago and I absolutely loved it! She got the recipe from her daughter, Joni – both mother and daughter are GREAT cooks. I had some beautiful broccoli florets from the Organic Market up the street and some shrimp in the freezer from Costco and half an hour later – voilá! I made a couple of modifications to the recipe, but here it is:

  • 1 lb. broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 4 tbsp. avocado oil (extra virgin olive oil may be substituted), divided
  • 1 tsp. whole coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp. whole cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. Maldon or kosher salt, divided
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne chile powder
  • 1 lb. large shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)
  • lemon wedges, for serving

Preheat oven to 425F. In a large bowl, toss broccoli florets with 2 tbsp. oil, coriander, cumin, 1/4 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. black pepper and chile powder. In a separate bowl, combine shrimp (thawed and drained, if using frozen), remaining 2 tbsp. avocado oil, lemon zest, remaining 1/4 tsp. salt and remaining 1/2 tsp. black pepper.

Spread broccoli in a single layer on a baking sheet (or I used a large cast iron frying pan) and roast for 10 minutes. Add shrimp to baking sheet and toss with broccoli. Roast, tossing once after 10 minutes. Cook until shrimp are pink (and curled) and broccoli is tender and golden around the edges, about 5 to 10 minutes more. Serve with lemon wedges, or squeeze lemon juice all over shrimp and broccoli just before serving.

Serves 2 to 4 (depending on your appetites!)

Roasted Broccoli with Shrimp

Measuring the Heat

In 1912, a pharmacist by the name of Wilbur Scoville developed a method to measure the heat level of chile peppers.  The pungency is measured in multiples of 100 units from the bell pepper, which rates at zero, to the fire-breathing habanero, which measures in at the highest end of the scale at three hundred thousand. The units of measurement are referred to as “Scoville units” or “Scovilles” and are best described as units of dilution.  A chile that rates 1 Scoville unit would take 1 unit of water to negate the heat. For example, it would take 30,000 to 50,000 units of water to neutralize a Tabasco pepper.

These days, many chile lovers use a new system which is referred to as the Official Chile Heat Scale, which rates the heat of chiles from 0 to 10. On this simpler scale, bell peppers still rate as 0 and habaneros rate at the top end of the scale with a 10.  Comparatively, jalapenos rate as 5, serranos at 6, and cayennes and Tabascos at 8. 

It’s interesting that regardless of the heat rating that a chile may have, everyone’s palate is different and some lower registering chiles will taste hotter to some people than a higher registering chile. For example, an East Indian dish may taste very hot to someone used to Mexican spicing, even though the chiles used measure lower on the heat scale.

Fortunately, most chile lovers are more concerned with flavor than with the heat measurement!