Houston chef Ja’Nel Witt is a contestant on celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay’s top-rated reality cooking show, “Hell’s Kitchen.” Chef Witt shows food radio talk show host Cleverley Stone how to make her signature dish, Thai Grilled Prawns with Asian Pesto. The eleventh season of “Hell’s Kitchen” Season 11 debuts on Tuesday, March 12 at 7 p.m. on FOX 26 television.
For more information about food, wine and dining in Houston, listen to Cleverley’s radio show, Saturdays from 9 a.m. until Noon on CBS Sports Radio 650. (By the way, she gives out restaurant gift cards on every radio show!)
Thai Grilled Prawns with Asian Pesto
Chef Ja’Nel A. Witt
“Hell’s Kitchen” season 11 contestant
Cook Time: 30 mins
- Blender or food processor
- Large pot
- Chef’s Knife
- Cutting board
- 1 lb jumbo shell-on shrimp (10-15)
- ½ cup fresh mint-chopped
- ½ cup fresh cilantro-chopped
- ½ cup fresh Thai basil-chopped
- 2 serrano chilies or jalapenos
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tbs fresh lime juice
- 2 tbs fish sauce
- 1 tbs fresh ginger-minced
- 1 tbs honey
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 10 oz angel hair pasta
1. Preheat grill to medium hot, and bring large pot of salted water to boil.
2. Using a sharp knife, butterfly the shrimp. Rinse and drain the shrimp in a large bowl.
3. Add herbs and other aromatics, tossing to coat well.
4. Cook the angel hair pasta until al dente (approx. 4-5 mins). Drain and rinse with cool water.
5. Toss the pasta with the Asian Pesto, and set aside. (Pasta best served at room temperature)
6. Grill the shrimp over medium-hot heat until cooked through, 3-5 minutes per side.
7. Serve shrimp on a nest of the noodles and garnish with mint and cilantro.
- ½ cup peanut or vegetable oil
- ¼ cup sesame oil
- ½ cup fresh lime juice
- ¼ rice wine vinegar
- ¼ cup fresh ginger- rough chop
- 6 medium garlic cloves
- 3-4 jalapenos-rough chop
- 2 tbs honey
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup (1/2 bunch) cilantro- stems included
- ½ cup fresh mint
- ½ cup fresh Thai basil
- 1 cup roasted peanuts
1. In blender, combine oils, vinegar, and lime juice
2. Add ginger, garlic and jalapenos and blend.
3. Add remaining ingredients, and ¼ cup of the roasted peanuts. Blend mixture until quite smooth.
4. Adjust seasoning with salt if necessary.
5. Add remaining peanuts, and pulse to give sauce slightly crunchy texture.