You've no doubt heard the old adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix." Grammar aside, there's a certain truth to the saying. A case in point: I have been making scampi the same way for over 25 years. My recipe is delicious served hot for dinner or warm to room temperature as part of a buffet. However, I have such faith in my new cookbook, Back to Basics by Ina Garten, that I decided to try a new recipe. The Barefoot Contessa is batting 1000 because her recipe was fantastic! Larry's comment was that you couldn't get something this delicious in a restaurant. He thought it took a lot of work, but frankly, aside from a bit of chopping, it assembled easily and, better yet, would be a wonderful dinner party dish since it CAN be assembled ahead of time and takes under 15 minutes to bake. I couldn't get the 12-15 count shrimp called for in the recipe, so made do with the 9-12 count. I served the scampi with my microwave risotto--if you haven't tried it yet, you're missing out on a great, simple dish--and roasted brussel sprouts and carrots. I got the recipe for the roasted sprouts in this same cookbook and just added diagonally sliced carrots. I scaled the recipe down for the 2 of us.
1 lb shrimp in the shell
1 1/2 tbs olive oil
1 tbs dry white wine
6 tbs unsalted butter, softened
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large shallot, chopped
2 tbs minced fresh parsley
1 tsp minced fresh rosemary
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tbs lemon juice
1 extra-large egg yolk
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
Kosher salt and pepper
lemon wedges, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees
- Peel, devein, and butterfly the shrimp (leave tails on)
- Place shrimp in mixing bowl and toss with olive oil, wine, salt and pepper; allow to sit at room temperature while you prepare the butter mixture
- In a small bowl, mash the softened butter with the minced garlic, shallots, parsley, rosemary, lemon zest, lemon juice, egg yolk, panko, salt and pepper until combined
- Arrange the shrimp in a single layer in a gratin dish, cut side down and tails toward the center of the dish. Pour remaining marinade over the shrimp. Divide the butter mixture evenly over the shrimp
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, until hot and bubbly; to brown the top, broil 1-3 minutes, watching carefully so as not to burn; garnish with lemon wedges
The only additon I would make to this dish is to add wonderful bread to sop up the butter mixture. I was unhappily out of bread, but will know better next time. I may serve the scampi over pasta next time.
Others have found this and other Contessa recipes to be the "bomb," too. Check out www.whatsonmyplate.wordpress.com ).