I love Shrimp Scampi but rarely make it, and I can't tell you why. It is so easy to make and so much cheaper than buying it in a restaurant. I mean really......shrimp, garlic, olive oil. Does it get any better than that?
Since it had been a while since I'd made it, I did a little research for recipes and was shocked to see such a variety of ingredients: vermouth, butter, olive oil, lemon zest, brandy....on and on. I wanted a straight-forward scampi, so I went to what I believe is about the best source: Cook's Illustrated. Several basic ingredients that come together in 10 minutes. A CI note on this recipe: Cayenne pepper replaces ground black pepper in this recipe, but use it sparingly, only to give the faintest hint of spiciness.
I served this over angel hair pasta with a Caesar salad and a whole-grain baguette from Panera.
SHRIMP SCAMPI (Serves 4)
1/4 cup EVOO
4 tsp minced garlic
1 1/2 to 2 pounds shrimp (CI recommends 21/25 per pound), peeled, deveined if desired, and rinsed
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves (I prefer Italian flat parsley)
2 Tbsp juice from 1 lemon
Heat oil and garlic in 10" skillet over medium heat until garlic begins to sizzle (be very carefully not to burn garlic. If it does, start all over). Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until fragrant and pale gold, about 2 minutes.
Add shrimp, increase heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until shrimp turn pink, about 7 minutes. Be careful not to overcook or the shrimp will be tough. Off heat, stir in parsley, lemon juice, and salt and cayenne to taste. Serve immediately.
Recipe Source: The Best Recipe, by the editors of Cook's Illustrated magazine