Shrimp is one of my favorite proteins to cook. Its easy, cheap, and quick. And it can be so elegant, thereby making it a perfect meal for a special occasion or for entertaining. This shrimp certainly falls in that category. Shrimp are seared, then cooked in a flavorful sauce of sherry and clam juice, and seasoned with shallot, parsley, lots of garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. They are then topped with toasted buttery breadcrumbs. I was blown away by this meal. So much so, that I'm adding it to my menu next week - and I rarely repeat recipes that soon!
One Year Ago: Sunflower Cupcakes
Garlicky Shrimp with Buttered Breadcrumbs
from Cook's Illustrated, American Classics
serves 4 as a main course
- 1 (3-inch) piece of baguette, cut into small pieces
- 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 2 Tablespoons minced parsley leaves
- 2 pounds jumbo (21-25 per pound) shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 4 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 5medium garlic cloves, minced (about 5 teaspoons)
- 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 teaspoons unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup dry sherry
- 2/3 cup bottled clam juice
- 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon, plus 1 lemon, cut into wedges
Melt 1 Tablespoon of the butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. When the foaming subsides, add the crumbs, shallot, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the crumbs are golden-brown, 7-10 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the parsley and transfer to a plate to cool.
Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel. Return to high heat, and 2 teaspoons of the oil, and heat until shimmering. Add half the shrimp in a single layer, being careful not to overcrowd the skillet. Cook until they are spotty brown and the edges turn pink, about 3 minutes (do not flip them!). Remove the skillet from heat and transfer the shrimp to a plate. Wipe out the skillet, and repeat with the remaining shrimp and oil; transfer to the plate.
Return the skillet to medium heat and melt 1 Tablespoon of butter. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant and just beginning to color, about 1 minute. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
Increase the heat to medium-high and slowly whisk in the sherry and clam juice. Bring to a simmer and cook until the mixture has reduced to 3/4 cup, about 3-4 minutes. Whisk in remaining 3 Tablespoons of butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, and stir in lemon juice and remaining tablespoon of parsley.
Reduce heat to medium-low, return shrimp to skillet, and toss to combine. Cover and cook until shrimp are pink and cooked through, 2-3 minutes. Divide shrimp and sauce evenly among plates or shallow bowls, and sprinkle with the bread crumbs. Serve with lemon wedges.