Way back in the 1970's I would often eat lunch at Chinese restaurants in Wilmington, DE, with my great Chinese friend, Dora Clark. I had various pork and shrimp dishes, but among them I had a favorite that was batter dipped fried butterflied shrimp with bacon with a light, sweet barbecue sauce, served over white rice. The Chinese name for that dish on the menu was Wor Dip Har.
Internet recipes I've found recently for Wor Dip Har are not batter dipped, but simply fried and served over rice with a light barbecue sauce.
I have a great beer batter fried shrimp recipe in Food Nirvana and I wondered if I could reproduce the Wor Dip Har I remember or something close to it, by somehow using some bacon in the preparation.
The recipe below is one that I found on the Internet and modified to try to create Wor Dip Har. I have to try it and report back with my results and any indicated changes. Somehow I already know it will be great.
1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice
6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
30 Jumbo shrimp (about a pound), shelled, cleaned and butterflied
10 slices of dry cured hickory smoked bacon, cut into thirds, crosswise
An Instant read candy/frying thermometer
Whisk the olive oil with the lemon juice and the garlic. Wrap each shrimp with a piece of bacon and brush the surface on both sides with the olive oil mixture.
Heat a heavy bottom skillet and arrange the shrimp in it in batches. Cook over medium high heat, turning once or twice, until the bacon is nicely browned without raw fat, and the shrimp is cooked through.
Transfer the cooked bacon-wrapped shrimp to a paper towel covered baking sheet.
Lightly batter dip each piece of shrimp (Use the beer batter recipe for fried shrimp shown below. Make it a thin batter.) and fry the shrimp in batches of six in soybean oil in a wok, at 375 degrees F, just long enough to fry the batter until it is crisp, for the interior is already cooked. Turn over once during frying. One to one and one half minutes per side is about the right amount of frying time.
Put each piece of batter dipped fried shrimp on a paper towel covered plate, and keep the plate in a 200 degrees F warming oven.
Serve the shrimp hot with a light, warmed BBQ sauce over some freshly made basmati rice.
You can use Ray's light BBQ dipping sauce recipe shown below or find a different sauce recipe via the Internet or buy a sauce at your supermarket.
Beer Batter recipe:
1 or 2 extra large eggs
8 to 10 oz. of very cold beer
2 oz. of ice cold vodka
1 cup of bread flour (I use all purpose flour and it works fine.)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. white pepper
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. (or more) of grated fresh ginger root (Or pre-minced ginger in a jar, available at Asian markets.)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
Whisk the egg(s) well in the chilled two quart bowl. Add the beer and the vodka slowly while mixing gently. It will foam a lot.
Add all the dry ingredients together and mix them with each other, if you haven't already done so, and then add that mixture to the egg and beer mixture gradually and mix gently. Adjust the consistency as required with beer if it is too thick or with flour if it is too thin. Do not mix longer than necessary. A few lumps in the batter won't hurt anything, while overmixing will ruin the batter due to gluten formation.
Moisture variations in different flours may create the need to adjust consistency. The batter should not be thick and it should not be runny. You will know you have the right consistency when a piece of shrimp coated with the batter holds a coating thickness of about 1/16th of an inch or less. This is a matter of personal preference so you can vary the batter thickness to suit yourself ... in other words, experiment. But do so quickly as the longer the batter sits the more gluten that will form, and you don't want that.
Ray's Light Barbecue Dipping Sauce: (makes two cups)
1 1/2 cups of Duck Sauce (Buy it in quart jars in any Asian market or in your supermarket.)
1 tsp. of Soy Sauce
3 tbsp. of rice vinegar
1 tbsp. of honey
1/4 tsp. of grated fresh ginger root
2 tbsp. of dry sherry
1/4 cup maraschino cherry juice
Mix all the ingredients together well and serve the sauce in individual portions in shallow bowls.
I hope you made and enjoyed this recipe, for I am sure it is delicious and different.