Shrimp Patties with Sesame Snow Peas

Like Appetizers for Dinner


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Well Fed Weeknights: Complete Paleo Meals in 45 Minutes or Less

Well Fed Weeknights

By Melissa Joulwan

Published 2016

  • About

When I was a kid, there was nothing I wanted more at the Chinese restaurant than the pupu platter. First, there was the name. Hilarious! Second, there was the tiny hibachi grill in the center of the platter. Third: shrimp toast. Oh, shrimp toast! It was greasy, crispy, salty, and squishy. It was also the ultimate American-Chinese appetizer of the 1960s, when white bread collided with chestnuts to create delights of questionable Polynesian origin at tiki parties all over suburbia. This recipe combines shrimp, herbs, and water chestnuts to recreate the briny appeal without the problematic toast.


Shrimp Patties

  • pounds raw shrimp
  • 1 (8-ounce) can water chestnuts
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried chives
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3–4 teaspoons coconut oil

Snow Peas

  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 pound snow peas
  • 2 teaspoons ghee
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds

Dipping Sauce

  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 scallion
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger
  • ¼ cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • ¼ cup coconut aminos
  • ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes


  • grater, pint-size Mason jar


Prep the shrimp patty ingredients

Peel and devein the shrimp. Drain the liquid from the water chestnuts. Combine the water, cream of tartar, and baking soda in a small bowl. Smash and peel the garlic clove.

Make the shrimp paste

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the peeled shrimp, water chestnuts, baking soda paste, garlic, cilantro, chives, and salt. Pulse until the mixture forms a smooth paste, then place the food processor bowl in the fridge while you cook the snow peas.

Cook the snow peas

Place the water in a large, nonstick skillet and bring it to a boil. Wash the snow peas and add them to the pan. Toss with two wooden spoons until the peas are dark green and the water has evaporated. Add the ghee and sesame seeds; stir-fry 1 minute and transfer them to a bowl. Lightly cover the bowl with aluminum foil to retain the heat.

Make the sauce

Peel and crush the garlic. Thinly slice the scallion. Peel and grate the ginger. Place the aromatics in a pint-size Mason jar along with the vinegar, coconut aminos, sesame oil, and red pepper flakes. Shake to combine.

Cook the patties

In the same skillet you used for the snow peas, warm 2 teaspoons of the coconut oil over medium-high heat. Wet your hands and measure ¼ cup shrimp paste, then shape it into a small patty. Place it in the pan and repeat; you should be able to get 4–5 shrimp cakes in the pan. Cook on one side until golden, about 2–3 minutes, then flip and brown the other side, another 1–2 minutes. Remove the patties to a plate as they brown and repeat with the remaining shrimp paste.

To serve

Divide the patties and snow peas among individual serving plates along with ramekins of dipping sauce.