Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Garlic Shrimp with Basil, aka Heaven

This is not the first time (nor will it be the last) that I have celebrated the existence of the America's Test Kitchen crew. In the fall of 2008, I visited Elspeth in Seattle and we were lucky enough to catch a presentation by Christopher Kimball at the public library. We got there early, and were each rewarded for our efforts with a copy of "America's Test Kitchen: Fast & Fresh Recipe Card Collection" - apparently it was Issue Number 2 of this handy booklet that looks like a magazine but reads like a cookbook. To date, I have made nine of the recipes that are included (some of them more than once), and always with great success. That means that there are 55 recipes remaining, and the more I think about it, the more sure I feel that I better get a move on with trying each of them!

This round, I tried the "Garlic Shrimp with Basil" recipe, and it will now be my official "impress the guests" dinner, though I made it on a weeknight in significantly less than an hour. It tastes, as I mentioned in the title of this post, rather like heaven.

Garlic Shrimp with Basil
(serves 4, or in my case: serves 1 for dinner, a lunch, and one more dinner)

1 1/2 pounds extra large shrimp, peeled and deveined
salt and pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
10 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup white wine
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh basil
4 Tbsp butter, cut into 4 pieces
2 Tbsp capers, drained and minced
1 tsp lemon juice

Pat shrimp dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add shrimp and cook until lightly browned, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to plate. (NOTE: I bought a 1 lb. bag of frozen cooked shrimp, defrosted it in the refrigerator over night, and followed these same directions. This worked well, though it was 1/2 lb less shrimp than the recipe calls for. It seems that cooked or uncooked shrimp are kind of interchangeable in this recipe, too.)

Add remaining oil, garlic, and 1/2 tsp pepper to empty skillet and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in wine and tomatoes and simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Off heat, whisk in basil, butter, capers, and lemon juice. Add shrimp and any accumulated juices to skillet. Cover and let sit until shrimp are heated through, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.

This can be served on linguine, rice, or crusty bread (says the recipe) but I served it on egg noodles, which was delicious.

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