Pour la fête des mères – Crevettes sautées à la cardamome et au coulis de mûres

I have felt the whole day as if today was Sunday…what a “tête en l’air” (head in the air) that would translate into air-headed, I do not have that particular reputation but today it really felt like a Sunday to me, the energy in the streets, the pace, just the overall feeling did not seem like the beginning of the week. Three day weekends are so rare in the US, that when it happens, you get confused.

Yesterday was Mother’s day in France and this would have been the type of dish I would have prepared my mom, she would have been intrigued and skeptical to see a blackberry next to a shrimp, but I’m quite sure she would have loved the flavor.

Even though French cuisine does not often traditionally combines sweet and savory flavors, there are indeed many recipes that do combine fruits in savory dishes. Some fruits such as berries are combined with game, I do like to associate them to seafood once in a while, you know for those particular days when you have one of those cravings…

Now when you look at the title, that might seem odd to you, shrimps and blackberries, well if you decide you ever want to try it out, you will definitely realize that the flavors are matching in a very harmonious symphony and this dish is something has a refined and subtle touch to it.

I love those types of quick dishes that look like they have been taking forever to prepare…this dish fits the express category and is a perfect choice when you want to impress your guests with a chic touch.

For a long time, I have been reluctant to add sugar to some savory dishes, just because I had a more traditional culinary background where sugar was an ingredients mainly used in desserts. I love berries of all kinds, and the first time I saw blackberries in the US, I was amazed by their huge size, they are just BIG (like everything else in the US)…nonetheless delicious. Now I only buy the big kinds, if they’re small I don’t even look at them!

Ingredients for 4 (20 shrimps)

  • 20 large shrimps, peeled and deveined
  • 5.29 oz (or 150 g) blackberries
  • 5 cardamom pods, seeds removed and crushed
  • Szechuan pepper
  • Fleur de sel
  • 0.88 oz (or 25 g) balsamic vinegar
  • 0.70 oz (or 20 g) salted butter
  • 0.70 oz (or 20 g) sugar
  • 3/8 cups (or 50 cl) water
  • mint leaves, finely chopped


Dissolve sugar with water and bring to a boil. Add blackberries, stir carefully, remove from the stove and blend the mixture with a  immersion blender. Pass the coulis through a sieve to remove the seeds. Keep aside.

Crush cardamom seeds (the seeds inside the pods) with a mortar and set aside. When the

In a pan, saute shrimps in butter, add salt and Szechuan pepper, then add cardamom seeds. Remove shrimps from the pan, and keep them warm. Deglaze pan with vinegar, and reduce to a half. Add blackberry coulis and let it reduce for 1 or 2 minutes.

Place some coulis in a plate, add shrimps in the middle, and sprinkle with mint.