Thursday, November 8, 2012

Scampering Around with Shrimp

In many Italian homes and restaurants, Shrimp Scampi is often served as a main dish or an appetizer; basically depending upon whether or not it is served with pasta.  Now many will believe that the term "scampi" describes how the dish is prepared; the shrimp sauteed in a marriage of olive oil, butter, garlic and white wine.  However, this is not so; scampi actually refers to a type of small lobster known as the Norway Lobster; if you're in Norway, or the Dublin Prawn if you're in Ireland.  Langoustines also fall into this family of seafood.  Whether the seafood you are using is a lobster, prawn, langoustine or the simple shrimp; the overall preparation gives you a dish both rich in scent and flavor.

Shrimp Scampi is an excellent dish to serve as a romantic dinner for two.  It cooks up quickly, leaving plenty of time for the couple to have "we" time with each other.  A perfect holiday for this meal, you would think, is Valentine's Day; but many couples are alone together for the winter holidays such as Yule, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year's Eve.  I did not mention Hanukkah as I believe that this recipe may not fall within the dietary rules of the Hebrew tradition.  Then there are the anniversaries or birthdays that need celebrating; with this recipe, any time can be a good excuse to serve it.

So let me introduce you to Shrimp Scampi; the recipe, not the sea creature.

Shrimp Scampi


8 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp minced garlic
4 Tbsp fresh, chopped parsley
1 Tbsp grated red bell pepper
4 Tbsp white wine
Pinch of salt and ground black pepper
2 lbs medium to large shrimp; peeled and deveined
2 tsp flour
1 tsp lemon juice
1 lb cooked linguine, keep warm


In a large skillet, medium-high heat, melt the butter with the oil; sauté garlic, parsley and bell pepper for 2 minutes; stirring constantly to keep garlic from browning. Add wine, salt, black pepper and shrimp; cook for 3-5 minutes or until shrimp turns pink. Stir in flour to thicken; add in lemon juice and linguine; toss to coat pasta and let cook 2 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Mary Cokenour

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