Shrimp Toast (Mandarin)
1/2 pound Fresh shrimp
2 ounces Pork fat
1 Egg white
1/2 teaspoon Rice wine or dry sherry
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Fresh ginger root minced
1 tablespoon Cornstarch
5 slices White bread
1 teaspoon Black sesame seeds or poppy
1 tablespoon Minced ham if desired
6 cups Oil for deep-frying
2 tablespoons Szechuan peppercorns
2 tablespoons Salt
Shell and devein shrimp.
Rinse and pat dry with a paper towel. Flatten each shrimp with the broad side of a cleaver to make chopping easier. Use cleaver to finely chop shrimp and pork fat. Combine chopped pork fat and shrimp; chop to a fine paste.
Place shrimp paste in a medium bowl. Use a spoon or your hands to mix shrimp paste with egg white, wine, salt, ginger root and cornstarch; set aside. Remove crusts from bread. Cut each slice into 4 squares. Mound 1 rounded teaspoon shrimp paste on each square of bread and press gently. Garnish with sesame seeds and minced ham, if desired. Heat 6 cups oil in a wok over high to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Reduce heat to medium. Carefully lower bread squares shrimp-side down into hot oil with a slotted metal spoon. Deep-fry 4 or 5 at a time until edges of bread turn golden, about 1 minute. Turn each bread and cook other side 30 seconds. Remove from oil with slotted spoon; drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining bread squares. Serve hot. Sprinkle with Peppersalt, if desired. Makes 20 appetizers.
Peppersalt: Heat a medium saucepan over medium-low heat 1 minute.
Add peppercorns and stir-fry 5 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat and let cool.
Grind peppercorns into a fine powder with a mortar and pestle or pepper grinder.
Add salt; mix well. Store in a tightly covered container. Makes about 1/4 cup.