Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Not long after Wei and I started dating, he made shrimp one night when I was hanging out at his place. We stood at his kitchen sink, peeling and eating. I matched him shrimp for shrimp. After a little while he said "Damn, I've never dated anyone who likes shrimp as much as me." I smiled and licked the Old Bay and shrimp juices off my fingers. So as you can see, when we got married last month, it was truly a marriage of soul mates :-) I share this story as a way of explaining why there's so many shrimp dishes in here. We love the crustaceans. Also, they cook really quickly, which make them perfect for weeknight cooking.

I took this recipe from Everyday Italian. I decided to use shrimp shell stock instead of recipe-stipulated white wine in the sauce, and I was very pleased with how it turned out. I used the easy Mark Bittman method: throw all the shells in a pot, cover with water, and let it boil away. After only ten minutes of boiling, the stock was intensely flavored and fragrant. I would definitely make it again to use in any shrimp dish! I chose to serve this with fettuccine; you could also omit the pasta and eat it with slices of rustic bread to dip in the juices at the bottom of the bowl.

1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined, shells reserved for stock
1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (use 1/2 teaspoon or omit entirely if you don't want it spicy)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
1 cup shrimp shell stock
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
6 ounces fettuccine or linguine

Start a large pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta, if you're using it. Put the shrimp shells in a small pot and cover with water. Bring it up to a boil, and let it simmer until you need it.

In a medium bowl, toss the shrimp with 1 teaspoon salt and the red pepper flakes. In a large, heavy skillet, warm the oil over medium high heat. Add the shrimp and saute until they turn pink, 2 or 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the shrimp to a plate and set aside. Add the onion to the same skillet and cook until soft and translucent, 6 or 7 minutes.

Drain the shells out of the shrimp stock and reserve a cup of the liquid. Add the tomatoes with their juices, 1 cup of shrimp stock, garlic, and oregano to the pan, and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly, about 10 minutes. Return the shrimp and accumulated juices to the tomato mixture and toss to coat. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed. If using pasta, add the drained strands to the pan and toss thoroughly. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the parsley and basil.

Rating: This is awesome
I love how this dish is elegant, but still very easy and delicious.


Erika said...

Looks delish!

And anyone that has labels "This is awesome" AND "This is not awesome" deserves to be TAGGED!

You're it!

Doug said...

I found your blog because I am making shrimp shell stock for the first time and wanted to find some uses for it..this dish sounds wonderful and I am going to make it soon.