DJ Foodielow-carb, low carb, sugar free, sugar-free, gluten-free, gluten free, primal, paleo

Smoked Paprika Shrimp with Macadamia Cracker and Watercress

Prep: 30 mins | Cook: 30 min | Total: 1 hr | Servings:6


Smoked Paprika Shrimp with Macadamia Cracker and Watercress
Smoked Paprika Shrimp with Macadamia Cracker and Watercress
Smoked Paprika Shrimp with Macadamia Cracker and Watercress
This dish has a somewhat strange origin. It's actually rooted in my mini-cheesecake recipe, believe it or not!

I had just made a crust with raw macadamia nuts. When I was packing them into the muffin tins, they formed such a compact layer, that I experimented by pushing some of the same crust into a cookie cutter shape, on parchment paper and baked it. The end result was a beautiful and delicious little cracker, in a perfect circle! Granted, it's VERY fragile, but it holds its shape well enough to be kind of a fun way to play with nuts.

Because I knew Valentine's Day was right around the corner, this seemed like a good place to use the idea. I pushed the macadamia nuts into heart shaped cookie cutters and baked them. They unmolded beautifully! Then, I knew I wanted shrimp. Two little shrimp, twisted and tangled together, where you can't tell which one is which is a nice romantic image, especially when they're leaning on a heart shaped cracker. Then, I thought about the watercress. This has a little heat to it, which translates to a little tickle of the tongue. I like a little added oral sensation when romance is on the mind! The aioli came about to just add a little more creamy fat to the dish and the smoked paprika? Well, the cracker made me think of chips and smoked paprika always makes me think of BBQ flavored chips. I like chips. Seemed like a fun one to throw at the dish.

Not a perfect or totally coherent string of thoughts, but the end result was lovely and quite delicious!

. .
Macadamia CrackerCaloriesFatProteinCarbsFiberSA'sNet Carbs
2 cups (167.5g)  macadamia nuts, raw1202.5127.513.7523.751508.75
1 tsp (4g)  brown sugar equivalent (Buy Now) 201.3304004
2 tbsp (28g)  fresh whole butter, melted2002200000
1 dash (1g)  salt0000000
Watercress AioliCaloriesFatProteinCarbsFiberSA'sNet Carbs
3 cups (102g)  watercress11.2202.041.02001.02
1/2 cup (109.63g)  mayonnaise (recipe)750.5483.452.
2 each (6g)  garlic cloves8002002
salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste0000000
Smoked Paprika ShrimpCaloriesFatProteinCarbsFiberSA'sNet Carbs
1 1/2 lb (681g)  shrimp (16/20), peeled and deveined721.8613.62136.26.81.4206.39
1/4 cup (54g)  light olive oil477.55400000
1 tbsp (7g)  smoked paprika20.23.911.053.922.5901.33
2 tbsp (30.5g)  lemon juice, freshly squeezed7.630.132.63.1302.5
salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste0000000
Totals (of 6 Servings):3419.48302.81g155.57g45.46g18.22g0.25g26.99g
Per Serving:569.9150.47g25.93g7.58g3.04g0.04g4.5g *


  1. Pre-heat oven to 325 F.
  2. If your macadamia nuts are not crushed, place them in a large plastic (ZipLoc style) bag. With a mallet or the edge of a pot or pan, whack at them until you have a squooshed bag of macadamia explosion.
  3. Pour your crushed macadamias into a mixing bowl and add your brown sugar equivalent (if you don't have this, you can omit it, or use a nice molasses. It helps to hold the crust together), and melted butter. Mix the ingredients until the macadamias are well coated with the sugar and butter.
  4. Grease the inside of 6 heart shaped metal cookie cutters.
  5. Place the cookie cutters onto a parchment covered cookie tray.
  6. Use the back of a spoon (or a tamper, if you have one) to press the crusts firmly into the base of the cups. This must be FIRM. Compact these very strongly, to make a solid shape (ESPECIALLY if you omit the molasses or brown sugar).
  7. Bake the crusts for 12 minutes, or until golden brown.
  8. Remove and set aside to cool.
  9. Place a pot of water on the stove to boil. Salt the water.
  10. Get a bowl full of ice water and set it aside.
  11. Plunge most of your watercress into the boiling salted water. Boil for about 30 seconds, or until the watercress has cooked.
  12. Immediately strain it and plunge it into the ice water, where it needs to chill down.
  13. Once the watercress has completely chilled, remove it from the ice water and squeeze it into a little ball, squeezing out all the excess ice water. The end result should be a fairly dry lump compressed cooked watercress.
  14. Add this lump to a food processor with your mayo and garlic. Puree for about 2 minutes. If this mixture is too thick, you can add a small amount of water, vinegar or lemon juice to thin it out. Add very small amounts, like 1/4 tsp to adjust. This should result in a slightly peppery, very green and lovely watercress aioli. Set aside.
  15. In a small mixing bowl, combine your smoked paprika, lemon juice and oil.
  16. Add your shrimp to the oil and season with salt and pepper.
  17. Pre-heat a large sauté pan. Saute your shrimp, oil and all, until the shrimp are cooked through (but not rubbery). About 4 minutes.
  18. Remove the shrimp and set on a plate to briefly cool. Save the oil in the pan.
  19. On 6 plates, place a dollop of the watercress aioli. Also, place a few sprigs of watercress.
  20. Place your macadamia crackers on top of the watercress.
  21. Quickly intertwine shrimp couple and place a pair on each plate.
  22. Drizzle a little of the remaining shrimp/smoked paprika oil from the sauté pan over the shrimp.
  23. Serve!

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* Learn More: More about this recipe and nutrition ...