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Shrimp in Pumpkin Seed Sauce

Pipian is a sauce made of ground pumpkin seeds, which dates back to the Aztecs. It comes in different colors, but this recipe is green and healthy. In central Mexico, Pipian s served with chicken; however, shrimp is more common to the coastal regions.

1 cup pumpkin seeds
¼ cup sesame seeds
½ pound tomatillos, husked
1 serrano chile
½ white onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 lettuce leaves
¼ cup cilantro
4 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 pound shrimp, cleaned and deveined

6 servings

1. Toast the pumpkin seeds in a frying pan over high heat, stirring frequently. (Avoid browning to maintain the sauce's trademark green color.) Seperate ¼ cup for the garnish. Toast the sesame seeds in the same manner.

2. Place the tomatillos, chile, onion and garlic on a tray under the broiler until soft. About 5 minutes on each side.

3. Place all the ingredients, except for the shrimp, in a blender. Puree until smooth.

4. Pour the sauce into a stockpot over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower to medium heat and let simmer for about 30 minutes.

5. Add the shrimp to the Pipian and cook for about 3 minutes or until done.

6. Spoon over white rice. Garnish with the remaining ¼ cup of toasted pumpkin seeds.

Pipian freezes well, so make a double batch and save some for a quick meal when there's no time to cook.