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Recipe: Green zebra tomatoes with grilled shrimp, nuoc cham, and toasted peanuts

Green zebra tomatoes with grilled shrimp, nuoc cham, and toasted peanuts
Green zebra tomatoes with grilled shrimp, nuoc cham, and toasted peanuts (courtesy of The Table at Season to Taste)

Serves 4

“Green zebras are sweet but have this tartness almost like a tomatillo,” says Carl Dooley of The Table at Season to Taste. “So their tang and acidity balance the sweetness of the shrimp, and underscore the funkiness of the fish sauce in the nuac cham. And,” he adds, “nuac cham is terrific on all kinds of other dishes, so I like to make extra.”

NUOC CHAM

2tablespoons palm sugar or light brown sugar
½cup water
¼cup lime juice (about 3 limes)
¼cup Asian fish sauce
1½ tablespoons sambal oelek chile paste (or Sriracha)
1clove garlic, grated
1piece (1 inch) fresh ginger, grated
1makrut lime leaf, finely chopped

1. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water. Bring to a boil and turn off heat. Let the mixture sit so the sugar dissolves; cool.

2. Stir in the lime juice, fish sauce, sambal oelek or Sriracha, garlic, ginger, and lime leaf. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

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SHRIMP

1tablespoon olive oil
1pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
10green zebra tomatoes, cored
Salt, to taste
2Persian or pickling cucumbers, thinly sliced
½cup roasted peanuts, chopped
½cup fresh mint leaves
4large spoonfuls nuoc cham

1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the shrimp and cook without disturbing for 2 minutes, or until it is browned on the undersides. Turn and cook 1 minute more, or until the shrimp are cooked through. Remove from the pan and cool to room temperature.

2. Slice the tomatoes and arrange on 4 plates. Sprinkle with salt. Top the tomatoes with shrimp, cucumbers, and peanuts. Add a large spoonful of the nuoc cham and garnish with mint. Carl Dooley of The Table at Season to Taste