Simple to make and super shareable, the spicy-sweet shrimp at Cebu, a Filipino restaurant in Wicker Park, has a good-time vibe that wouldn’t be out of place at a buzzing Madrid tapas bar. And that’s no coincidence: Co-owner Marlon Tan explains that the sizzling shrimp is a play on gambas al ajillo, one of the quintessential tapas of the Philippines’ former colonizer, Spain. A big punch of garlic nods to the original, while a sweet, velvety coating of ketchup, soy sauce, and oyster sauce subverts it for a dish that hits notes both familiar and surprising. Serve it with rice or garlic bread to sop up every last drop of the delicious sauce.

Cebu’s Sizzling Gambas

Makes:2 servings
Active time:15 minutes
Total time:20 minutes

2 Tbsp.Neutral oil
4 Tbsp.Minced garlic
1 lb.Raw easy-peel jumbo shrimp
½ cupKetchup
¼ cupOyster sauce
2 Tbsp.Soy sauce
2 Tbsp.Light brown sugar
¼ tsp.Black pepper
2 Tbsp.Softened butter
1 tsp.Chile flakes
 Rice or garlic bread for serving

1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add shrimp and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, combine ketchup, oyster sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, and pepper in a small bowl. Add sauce to the skillet, gently tossing shrimp to coat. When sauce begins to simmer, about 1 minute, add butter, stirring until it is fully incorporated.

3. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in chile flakes. Serve immediately alongside rice or garlic bread.