Specialty of the House: Hummingbird Bakery’s shrimp tacos

March 22, 2014 

Shrimp Tacos with Coleslaw and Chipotle Mayo from Hummingbird Bakery.

ANDREA WEIGL — aweigl@newsobserver.com

I frequent the Hummingbird Bakery a couple times a month with full intentions of trying something new. That goes out the window, and I always order the shrimp tacos. Any chance you might get the recipe?

Doris Echeverria


Chef Amy Tornquist was more than willing to share the recipe for this menu favorite at her Durham bakery and cafe, which opened two years ago.

Tornquist also owns Watts Grocery and Sage and Swift Catering, both in Durham.

A few notes from the recipe tester: This recipe has a lot of ingredients and can seem daunting at first glance. However, poaching shrimp and making a coleslaw with four ingredients are easy to do. One way to simplify is to not make the pico de gallo. Substitute a favorite salsa, or use store-bought pico de gallo instead.

But don’t skimp on the chipotle mayonnaise. That element makes the dish.

Shrimp Tacos with Coleslaw

and Chipotle Mayo

The chipotle mayo recipe makes more than you will need for this dish. It will keep in the fridge for one to two weeks. Adapted recipe from chef Amy Tornquist of Hummingbird Bakery in Durham.

2 large carrots, peeled, divided

1 cup shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 stalk celery, roughly chopped

1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons chipotle

Small handful of parsley, equal to 1 tablespoon when chopped

Half of a small shallot

1 cup mayonnaise

Juice from a half-lemon

1/4 cup buttermilk

2 tablespoons heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 medium head green cabbage

1 large carrot, peeled

2 tablespoons cup olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar

1/2 to 1 tablespoon diced jalapeno, seeds removed

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons diced red onion

1 cup diced tomato

Juice of 1 lime

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

8 corn tortillas

POACH shrimp: Roughly chop 1 carrot and place with shrimp, celery and onion in a medium saucepan. Cover with water. Over medium heat, bring to a simmer. Cook about 5 minutes or until shrimp is just cooked through. Remove shrimp from poaching liquid to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, roughly chop shrimp. Set aside.

MAKE chipotle mayo: Place chipotle, parsley and shallot in food processor and blitz until minced. Add mayonnaise, lemon juice, buttermilk and heavy cream. Puree until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place chipotle mayo in medium bowl, and set in the refrigerator.

ASSEMBLE slaw: Use a mandoline or food processor to shred cabbage and 1 remaining carrot. Place shredded vegetables in a medium bowl. Combine olive oil and champagne vinegar in a small measuring cup; whisk to combine. Pour over slaw and toss to evenly coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.

WHILE wearing plastic gloves, cut open jalapeno; remove seeds. Mince as much jalapeno as you like depending upon how hot you want the salsa. Make pico de gallo: Combine minced jalapeno, Worcestershire sauce, diced red onion, diced tomato, lime juice and chopped cilantro in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Taste and adjust seasonings.

ASSEMBLE tacos: Add diced shrimp to the salsa or pico de gallo. Stir gently to mix. Warm 8 corn tortillas in oven or on skillet. Put two corn tortillas on plate and top with layer of slaw, then shrimp-pico de gallo mix, and top with 1 tablespoon chipotle mayo. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

Yield: 8 tacos

Specialty of the House gets recipes for local restaurant dishes. Send requests, including your city, to Specialty of the House, The N&O, P.O. Box 191, Raleigh, N.C. 27602; or email aweigl@newsobserver.com.

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