I suspected that I had officially gone off the deep end when I found myself googling around for hot dog bun recipes a few weeks back. I couldn’t tell you how it came up – I don’t even think we had hot dogs in the house at the time, and it’s not like I’m some snob about store-bought buns (though the infamous discrepancy between the quantity of packaged hot dogs and quantity of packaged buns still baffles me, but let’s veer away from tangents for now). At around the same time, I was struck by a craving for a shrimp salad sandwich in the style of a lobster roll (I’ve never even had a lobster roll, just seen some great photos of them), since I had a bag of frozen shrimp waiting to be used for something other than the usual stirfry.
I got going on the rolls first. I found an easy recipe for the buns, which can be used for dogs or burgers or cheesesteaks or whatever, and got crackin’. Oh. My. Gahd. These buns were so supple, so pillowy, and the absolute devil coming out of the oven and straight into my belly with some sweet cream butter. These buns freeze beautifully and you can bake ‘em up in any shape, and the dough is easy to handle, too.
For the shrimp salad, I used a one-pound bag of frozen jumbo uncooked, unshelled shrimp (Trader Joe’s frozen shrimp is pretty awesome, and not too hard on the wallet). I must not have ever boiled shrimp before, because I would have recalled that you can smell up the entire kitchen in doing so. Anyway, the salad was simple enough: about ¼ cup of good mayo, a teaspoon or so of Old Bay seasoning, ¾ cup of chopped celery, salt, pepper, lemon juice and Tabasco to taste. The cooled rolls were split down the top, lined with cold, crisp romaine lettuce, and filled to the brim with the chunky shrimp mixture. I inhaled two of these “shrimp rolls” within ten minutes. Belch-erific.