Nilasing na Hipon marinated in gin and deep-fried to golden perfection are the perfect beer match. Crispy and tasty, these drunken shrimp are seriously addictive.
When I first made these crispy fried drunken shrimp for the blog in 2013, I couldn’t find small head-on shrimps, so I had to use some pretty large ones. The dish still turned out delicious, but smaller shrimps would have been better as they’re crispier and more fun to eat.
On the last day of my Philippine vacation, one of my aunts brought some suahe from the wet market and they were just the right size. I was so excited about my loot, I quickly proceeded to make nilasing na hipon. Nevermind that I had yet to pack my things for my trip home.
My favorite crustaceans didn’t disappoint. They were golden, crunchy, sweet-tasting, and flavorful. So addictive with spicy vinegar dip!
How to Make Nilasing na Hipon
- For best results, I suggest using head-on small shrimp, 51/60 count.
- In a bowl, marinate the shrimp in liquor along with minced garlic and freshly-cracked pepper to infuse additional flavor. The local lambanog is traditional, but you can also use gin, rum, beer, brandy or wine.
- Marinate for no more than an hour as the shrimp will begin to cook off in the alcohol. Drain well and pat dry.
- In a wide, shallow plate, combine flour and corn starch. I like to season mine with just salt and pepper but feel free to kick it up and experiment with other dried herbs and spices such as garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, paprika, dried parsley flakes, Italian seasoning, or curry powder.
- Dredge the shrimp in the flour mixture until fully coated. To speed up the process, place the shrimp and the seasoned flour in a resealable plastic bag. Seal the bag and give it a few shakes until the shrimp are evenly and fully coated.
- In a wide pan over medium heat, heat about one-inch deep of oil to the optimal range of 350 F to 375 F. Carefully add the shrimp and deep-fry until golden brown, turning as needed. Do not overcrowd the pan and cook in batches as needed.
- With a slotted spoon, remove crispy fried shrimp from pan and drain on a wire rack set over a baking sheet to catch oil drips. Serve immediately.
How to Serve Crispy Fried Drunken Shrimp
These crunchy fried shrimp are a delicious appetizer accompaniment to your favorite beer or hard drinks. They also make a great main dish with steamed rice and spicy vinegar or your choice of dipping sauce.
Nilasing na Hipon
- 1 pound small shrimp, head-on (51/60 count)
- 1/2 cup Gin or Rum
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- canola oil
- With scissors, trim off tendrils of shrimp. Wash and drain well.
- In a bowl, combine shrimp, gin, garlic, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper. Marinate for about 30 minutes. Drain well and discard liquid.
- In a bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, the remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Dredge shrimp in the mixture until fully coated.
- In a wide pan over medium heat, heat about 2 inches of oil. Add shrimp individually and deep-fry until golden and crisp.
- With a slotted spoon, remove from oil and drain on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Serve immediately with spicy vinegar, if desired.