Beliz, The Time of My Life: Coconut Shrimp

If you received this new post as an email from Marla in the Kitchen, listen to the video by clicking on the post title “Belize, The Time of My Life.” You’ll be redirected to the blog’s website where YouTube videos can be played.

Today’s post is written by my sister, Ginny, about her son’s May 5 wedding in Belize. 



April 30: the journey begins. Vashon to SeaTac, red-eye to Atlanta, transfer to Belize City. Tiny, scary hopper flight to San Pedro, van ride from airport to water taxi with a stop to buy provisions (mostly limes and tequila). Water taxi to X Tan Ha. Arrive at 2 pm. 


May 1: first dinner—water taxi to Portofino. Blackened snapper. 

May 2: snorkeling at Ho Chan Marine Park. My new best thing EVER! It’s like jumping in your dentist’s aquarium. All the salt does a number on your do, however. 10 minute walk down the beach to dinner at Costa Blu. Great coconut shrimp and black bean salsa. 


Father of the groom

Sister of the groom

May 3: water taxi to San Pedro for more provisions. The town—hot, crowded, and picturesque, yielded eggs, chips, salsa, and pineapple. I did find some part time work for the off season. 


Mother of the groom, trying not to work

May 4: another snorkeling offer, and why not? This time, directly off from the resort with a beautiful turtle at the head of the parade of rainbow-hued sea life. The sea bottom reminded me of the Sonora desert, with rounded humps, wavy fans, and pokey spires colored with burnt umber and purple. Whisked off by water taxi to San Pedro to the rehearsal dinner on a large flat-bottomed boat. Enjoyed drinks with little umbrellas, delicious dinner of some sort and dancing on the deck while hanging on to the rail in an attempt not to go overboard. Frowned upon by the captain. We had a few minutes before the taxi, and what ho? A Karaoke Bar? Never one to turn down karaoke, Mia and I pitched out a surprisingly good “Time of My Life”, Dirty Dancing style. 



May 5: Wedding day. Rain? Didn’t stop yoga on the pier. You’re gonna get wet and hot anyway. Clear and calm by 2:00. Primping with the beautiful bridesmaids; my daughter, the fairest of them all. The wedding went off without a hitch, well there was the hitch—Andrew and Ashley. Lovely, happy, and in love. Dinner and dancing under the heavy clouds, but who notices, until the rain scatterers the revelers. Partying goes on for some, bedtime for others amid the crashing of a very dramatic thunder storm.


The bride and groom


May 6: Recovery day. Sunday, bobbing in the pool on a very large inflatable swan, dinner at Manta Chica with Pam And Eric. Andrew and Ashley invited the parents over for lunch on Monday, guess they missed us! We moved on John McAfee’s estate for another very colorful drink. As the story goes, he is in exile for murdering someone. Then a very long and bumpy ride in the golf cart to Secret Beach for a stunning sunset. The end of the road exposes a ramshackle group of huts, hammocks, and hippies. No electricity, but lots of cold beer—go figure. Our final dinner at Portofino under the full moon with warm breezes swaying the palm trees. A fitting finale to a most memorable week.

Coconut Shrimp


  • 10-12 large shrimp
  • 1 cup Panko
  • 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1 tablespoon grated lime peel 
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 1-2 cups high-temperature oil for deep-frying 

Remove shells from shrimp, but leave tails on. Set aside. 

Mix Panko, coconut, lime peel, salt, and cayenne pepper. Place in large bowl. 

Place whisked eggs in separate bowl. Add shrimp to eggs, a few at a time. Shake excess eggs from shrimp. Add shrimp to Panko/coconut mixture and toss to coat. Reserve coated shrimp on plate or sheet-pan, refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. 

Pour enough peanut oil into large skillet to reach depth of 1/4 inch; heat over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add shrimp to skillet and cook until golden and just opaque in center, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Serve with Thai Chili Sauce or Cilantro Mint Chutney.

This entry was posted in Family and friends, Recipes, Travel and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Beliz, The Time of My Life: Coconut Shrimp

  1. Jenni says:

    Love everything about this, but especially the shared amazement at snorkeling — best return on effort known to humans — and the colorful descriptions and gorgeous photos of a place I’ve never visited.

  2. Patricia Curtis says:

    Looks like a perfect wedding and week….so glad for all of you….what joy and love shows in the photos! Well done.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.