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Moroccan Shrimp Pouches
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2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
1/4 cup chopped shallots
1 pound small shrimp, preferably rock shrimp
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon saffron powder or turmeric
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup Tomato Sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian Parsley
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound frozen phyllo dough, thawed
6 tablespoons melted butter
2 lemons, cut into wedges
Makes 26 to 30 Pastries - Serves 10 to 12
Place the olive oil, garlic, and the shallots in a large saute pan set on high heat and cook for 2 minutes. Add the shrimp, cumin, saffron or turmeric and tabasco, and cook until the shrimp turns pink, about 3 minutes. Add the wine, stir well, and cook 1 minute, until reduced by half. Stir in the tomato sauce and cook for 2 minutes, until the liquid is thick enough to coat the shrimp. Remove from the heat and transfer the mixture to a food processor. Add the parsley and ricotta and process for 30 seconds, until the shrimp is finely chopped - the texture should not be completely smooth. Taste the mixture for salt and add if needed. Set aside.
Place the phyllo dough on a flat surface and cut through the stack crosswise, making 2 equal stacks. Put the 2 stacks on top of each other and cover with a dampened paper towel.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. To assemble the pastries, take a sheet of phyllo from the stack and place it in front of you, with the short side closest to you. Lightly brush with the melted butter. Place 1 tablespoon of the shrimp filling in the center of the sheet, 1 inch from the bottom. Fold the bottom of the phyllo over the filling and roll away from you for several turns. Fold the right third of the sheet over the filling and roll for several turns. Fold the left third of the sheet over and continue rolling the pastry until you reach the end. You should now have a cigar-shaped pastry. Place on a greased baking sheet and brush the top with the melted butter. Repeat with the remaining phyllo and filling. You should have 26-30 pastries.
Bake 20-25 minues, until the tops are golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes and serve warm with the lemon wedges.
Wine Suggestion: Riesling
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