Spicy Fried Shrimp Roll with Cardamon Sauce

Spicy Fried Shrimp Roll

This Spicy Fried Shrimp Roll is my take on a classic New England Lobster Roll, except of course there’s no lobster. I used fried shrimp instead.

Spicy Fried Shrimp Roll with Cardamon Sauce 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 4Source Inspired by Baco Mercat, Los AngelesPublished

With a toasted, buttery outside and a soft inside, flat-bottomed, top-loading New England style hot dog rolls are the classic choice for Lobster Rolls. Other rolls can be used in this recipe if you prefer.

Spicy Fried Shrimp Roll


  • 1 red onion (peeled and thinly sliced)
  • ½ cup warm water
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (plus more as needed for seasoning, divided)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon (plus 2 tablespoons) freshly squeezed lemon juice (divided)
  • 3 tablespoon minced flat leaf parsley (divided)
  • 2 tablespoon minced chives
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 7 teaspoon minced fresh garlic (divided)
  • freshly cracked black pepper (as needed for seasoning)
  • 1 serrano chile (seeded and minced)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 16 large shrimp (about 1 pound) peeled, tails removed
  • vegetable oil (as needed for drying)
  • 4 tablespoon melted butter
  • 4 top split hot dog buns (see note)
  • 1 Hass avocado (peeled and sliced)
  • lemon wedges (as needed for serving)


Make the pickled red onion: Place red onion slices into a medium bowl. In a 1‑cup or larger pitcher whisk together water, vinegar, granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon salt until dissolved. Pour the mixture over the onions. Set aside at least 3 hours.

Make the crema: In a bowl, whisk sour cream, milk, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 2 tablespoons parsley, chives, lemon zest, and 1 teaspoon garlic; season with salt and pepper. 

Make the spicy cardamom sauce: In a blender, combine the remaining minced garlic with minced chile, cardamom, cumin, olive oil and remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl beat the egg until well-combined. Place the panko, remaining 1 tablespoon parsley, and a pinch each salt and pepper in a separate medium bowl; mix well.

Dip a shrimp in the beaten egg, letting most of it drip back into the bowl, then dredge the shrimp in the panko mixture; transfer it to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining shrimp. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.

In a medium saucepan, heat 1‑inch of vegetable oil to 350 degrees F. Fry 4 shrimp at a time, turning once, until browned and crisp, about 2 to 2 ½ minutes total time. Transfer the shrimp to a clean parchment-lined baking sheet to drain; season with salt. Repeat with remaining shrimp. The shrimp can be made up to 3 hours in advance. Reheat for about 6–8 minutes in a 350 degree F. oven.

Make the shrimp rolls: Heat a large griddle, skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush the outsides of the buns with melted butter then toast or grill the outside surfaces until lightly golden. Spread some spicy cardamom sauce inside each bun, arrange 4 shrimp and 3 or 4 slices avocado on top. Scatter with pickled red onion to taste and a drizzle of the prepared crema. Serve immediately with lemon wedges on the side.