An appetizer is finger food served before the meal to whet the appetite. These deliciously crunchy beer battered shrimp do just that and more!

They are so addictive, I could eat a whole plate of them for a main entree and want nothing more!

Beer Battered Shrimp
4-6 servings

  • 1 (8-ounce) bottle beer
  • 1 (2-ounce) “shot” vodka
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 pounds “16/20” size shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails attached (for presentation)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups vegetable oil
  • 20 – 30 basil leaves, stemmed, washed and dried
  • 2 lemons, thinly sliced

Pour the beer into a medium-size bowl and stir in the vodka. Slowly whisk in 1 cup of the flour and the paprika. The batter should be fairly thick, but also easy to stir. If it is not thick enough, add more flour. Set aside in a warm place.

“Press” the garlic clove into another bowl and stir in the olive oil and shrimp. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Pour the oil into a heavy-bottomed pot. Heat the oil slowly to 370F.

Use a candy thermometer to monitor the temperature.

Line a baking sheet with paper towels to drain the shrimp once they are cooked.

Preheat the oven to 250F.

Arrange the basil leaves on a sheet pan. Put the pan in the oven for 2 minutes, just to wilt the basil a bit.

Wrap a basil leaf around the middle of each shrimp.

Dip the shrimp into the batter (try not to batter the tails) and drop, in small batches, into the oil.

Fry until crispy, turning on both sides with a stainless strainer.

Drain the first batch of shrimp on paper towels and season immediately with salt. Keep them warm in the oven while you continue frying the others.

When all the shrimp are fried, add the lemons into the oil and fry until crispy.

Arrange the beer battered shrimp (with the tails up) attractively on a serving plate and scatter a few lemon slices on top for garnish.