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These zesty shrimp are marinated in freshly squeezed lime juice, then amped up with hot Serrano chiles. They’re excellent party fare and an elegant appetizer for an intimate dinner. You can double, triple or even quadruple the recipe as you with.

Yield: Serves 6

½ cup fresh lime juice
2 serrano chiles (or to taste), stemmed, seeded (if you wish to reduce the heat), and finely minced
½ teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
24 medium-size shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 teaspoon crushed caribe chile or pequin quebrado, for garnish
1 small bunch fresh cilantro or Italian (flat-leaf) parsley, for garnish

1. Place the lime juice, serranos, salt, and garlic in a large nonreactive bowl and stir to combine. Blot the shrimp dry with paper towels and add them to the marinade. Marinate the shrimp, covered, in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or up to a day.

2. Preheat the grill or broiler to medium-high heat.

3. Thread the shrimp onto metal skewers, 3 or 4 shrimp to a skewer, piercing the center of the shrimp and making sure each shrimp nests under the previous one and faces the same way. Make sure the shrimp aren’t tightly squeezed together, as this will produce uneven cooking.

4. Grill the shrimp until they just turn pink, 2 to 3 minutes per side. (Be careful not to overcook them, or they will become tough and dry)

5. Transfer the shrimp, still on their skewers, to a serving platter. Sprinkle with the crushed caribe chile, then garnish with the cilantro sprigs. Serve warm.

Jane's Southwest Recipes and more great ideas for cooking with chiles.

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