Hope all is well and all my Northeast neighbors are staying warm from the Artic blast that we are having.
I wanted to share another updated recipe of mine with all of you today and it is my classic Shrimp Scampi. The update involves using shrimp shells to add extra flavor to the scampi sauce.
Normally, I save all my rinsed shrimp shells and put them in a bag for the freezer, and when I collect a significant amount I make a seafood stock. But today I decided to use the shells immediately for additional flavor.
I gave this new idea a test and it worked out perfectly sauteeing the shells in wine, which added a deeper, richer seafood flavor to the final sauce.
Before I share the recipe, I just want to mention to be careful if you order this dish in a restaurant if you have an allergy to lobster. Some restaurants, usually old-school Italian restaurants may use “real scampi” which is a langoustine and belongs to the lobster family. However, if they use prawns they belong to the shrimp family. There are many variations of this dish but if you have allergies, it is best to ask your server first to double-check for you.
I hope this dish inspires you to try this recipe one day in your home. It is quick and easy.
I served it with tri-color spaghetti (you can use any pasta of your choice or even a simple slice of hot crusty bread for dipping) with the wine, butter, garlic sauce.
Stay well and warm and enjoy the recipe.
1 ½ lb. of LARGE shrimp – SAVE THE SHELLS
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
4-5 garlic cloves, sliced
½ cup white wine (OR seafood stock if you prefer)
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp Calabrian crushed peppers (in a jar) OR ¼ tsp red pepper chili flakes
Black pepper, to taste
½ cup fresh chopped parsley
Juice of ½ of a lemon (save some lemon slices for garnish)
½ lb. spaghetti (OR Pasta of your choice)
½ cup reserved pasta water
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions, reserve 1/2 cup pasta water before draining.
In a large skillet, add ½ cup white wine OR seafood stock and ADD the rinsed shrimp shells. On low heat, sauté the shells for 10 minutes to flavor the liquid- this liquid will be added to the sauce. (The shells will turn bright orange). Strain the shells and set the liquid aside.
In a second skillet, melt butter with olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the wine or stock, salt, black pepper, Calabrian crushed peppers OR red chili flakes, 1/2 cup reserved pasta water, and the liquid from the sauteed shells and simmer for 2 minutes.
Add the shrimp and sauté until they turn pink and firm– 2-4 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the shrimp and have the tails curl up very tightly or they will be tough. Cook them until they just turn pink.
Stir in the parsley and lemon juice, mix well and serve over the pasta. Serve immediately.
Until my next post, make every day a celebration!
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