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Shrimp Nachos with Mango Pico de Gallo and Cilantro-Lime Crema


As a New Englander, loving seafood is kind of a given. Living close to the coast definitely has its perks and we're spoiled with some of the freshest fish around. I find myself craving it often, though I was unconvinced I could find something that was as fresh as from a restaurant. But not anymore.


Enter: North Coast Seafoods. A Boston-based, family-owned company that's dedicated to providing the highest-grade finfish and shellfish possible. They closely inspect every fish that comes through their doors and even have an in-house microbiological laboratory to guarantee the quality and safety of every product.


More than that, though, I love that this Boston-built company supports local fishermen and women whenever possible. New England thrives on the dedication of these hard-working, small boat captains every day, and North Coast has been sourcing local seafood from the Boston Fish Pier for over 60 years. In addition to locally sourced items, their clean label Naked Seafood products are all flash frozen within hours or even minutes of when they’re caught. This means that when thawed out, your seafood is just hours out of the water in a fresh state.

As I dove further into their mission, I noticed they were committed to sustainability as well. They use the long-line method of catch and live fish are caught individually, eliminating their bruising and cutting back on their stress. For the last nine years, North Coast Seafoods has also partnered with the Gulf of Maine Research Institute to sustain the health of our local ecosystems by sourcing verified Responsibly Harvested® species.


"Sure, now all of this sounds great, but how does it taste?" I agree at the end of the day, the product has to be top-notch. Well, I'm here to tell you, Holy Mackerel, this stuff is good.


I opted for the Naked Raw Shrimp. The Naked Seafood brand gives you just that the purest, cleanest seafood there is. They're raised without antibiotics, preservatives, chemicals, or phosphates, and are certified sustainable. They actual had three types of shrimp: raw, cooked, and jumbo. However, I wanted to try it in its simplest form to ensure the quality was up to snuff. Right off the bat I noticed the shrimp didn't have any weird smells or films that the frozen version often does, and they were crisp after cooking. I definitely snuck a few while I was making the rest of the dish's components.


Because these are the Naked shrimp, they give a great baseline for any flavor or seasoning you might want to add. And after trying my first bag, I can tell you I'm hooked.

I decided to try out the product with shrimp nachos because it combines two of my favorite foods, and honestly, I hadn't seen many versions of this before. I'm all about pushing the envelope when it comes to food and was inspired to give the shrimp-cheese combination the respect it deserves.


The result was a flavorful plate with bursts of sweetness from the untraditional mango pico de gallo, refreshing zest from the cilantro-lime crema, and the perfect amount of saltiness from the cheese sauce to go with the freshly cooked shrimp. And one of the best parts about this dish is that it's very customizable. Want more jalapeño? Throw it into that pico. Not a huge fan of cilantro? Take that puppy out and give yourself a lime crema instead. No matter how you tweak it, it'll be a definite crowd pleaser on taste and presentation.

Shrimp Nachos with Mango Pico de Gallo and Cilantro-Lime Crema


Ingredients


For the nachos:


For the cheese sauce:

  • 2 tbsp. butter

  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

  • 8 oz. shredded cheddar

  • 1 cup whole milk


For the mango pico de gallo:

  • 3 Roma tomatoes, finely diced

  • 1/4 of a medium red onion, finely diced

  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1/4 cup mango, finely diced

  • 1/2 of a jalapeño, finely diced

  • pinch of salt


For the cilantro-lime crema:

  • 1 cup sour cream

  • 3 tbsp. mayonnaise

  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro leaves

  • 2 green onions, chopped green parts only

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 1 lime, juiced

  • pinch of salt


Cooking Steps

  1. Add the pico de gallo ingredients into a small bowl. Mix them together and taste it to make any adjustments. Place the bowl the in the refrigerator to let the flavors meld while you continue the recipe.

  2. Place all the crema ingredients in a food processor. Blend on the lower setting for approximately 2 minutes, or until well combined. Taste and adjust any ingredients to your liking.

  3. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan along with 1/2 of the bag of North Coast Seafoods shrimp. Let them cook for two minutes per side, or until they're pink and opaque. Repeat with the remaining shrimp and set aside.

  4. Add the butter for the cheese sauce to a clean saucepan or small pot on medium heat and melt. Add the flour and whisk until bubbling.

  5. Once bubbling, add the milk and bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the cheddar cheese and stir until melted. Set aside.

  6. Assemble the nachos. Place tortilla chips on a medium tray or serving platter. Sprinkle the chips with the Monterey jack cheese and then top with the cheese sauce (the hot cheese sauce should melt the jack cheese). Add the pico de gallo, followed by the cooked Naked shrimp, and drizzle with the crema. Serve immediately.

Notes

Garnish with avocado, jalapeños, cilantro, or whatever you'd like!

I chose not to add lime during the shrimp cooking process because of the crema, but that's absolutely an option (especially if you didn't want to make the crema). I'd use a whole lime for the entire bag of shrimp.

My serving size suggestion would be 2-3 people. However, I devoured this who plate by myself, so it's really a matter of opinion :)

Have you tried this recipe? Let me know what you think in the comments!

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