Monday, November 14, 2011

Garlicky Shrimp with Bread Crumbs

If you know me, it might not come as too much of a surprise that I decided to catalog my collection of Cook's Illustrated magazines.  So for a few fun nights, I created an Excel spreadsheet and entered all the different recipes and tips that are in the Cook's Illustrated magazines I own (some dating back to 2006).  It was like finding a treasure trove of so many (new-to-me) recipes!  One that stood out to me right away was the garlicky shrimp with bread crumbs.  Garlic + seafood + fresh bread crumbs? Yes, please.

I think this is now one of my favorite ways to cook shrimp. I actually made the bread crumbs several days ahead of time and refrigerated them. They might not have been quite as crisp that way but they were still so good.   Don't substitute for the homemade bread crumbs! They were really the star of the dish. 

I did change a few things in the recipe  -  I substituted both the sherry and clam juice with white wine and I omitted a tablespoon or two of butter.  This meal came together quickly since the shrimp cooks very fast.  Another time saver was that you don't bread the individual shrimp -- instead, the shrimp dish is simply topped with the crumbs.. I served this with risotto and roasted cauliflower for an elegant Saturday night dinner.

Garlicky Shrimp with Bread Crumbs
Taken from: Cook's Illustrated, April 2007
Serves 4  (I halved this)
  • 1 (3-inch) piece of baguette, cut into small pieces
  • 5 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces (I only used 3-4 tablespoons and still thought it was delicious)
  • 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
  • 5 medium garlic cloves, minced (about 5 teaspoons)
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup dry sherry (I used white wine instead)
  • 2/3 cup bottled clam juice (I used white wine instead)
  • 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon, plus 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  1. Pulse the bread in a food processor until coarsely ground (you should have about 1 cup of crumbs).  Thoroughly dry the shrimp with paper towels; toss with sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.  Set aside.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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 (I only added about 1-2 tablespoons), and stir in lemon juice and remaining tablespoon of parsley.
  6. 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.


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