Shrimp Scampi - classic simple ingredients done right, resulting in a contemporary restaurant-style dish

Shrimp Scampi - classic simple ingredients done right, resulting in a contemporary restaurant-style dish

This is just such a succulent dish! It is equally amazing as a quick weeknight meal as well as a dish to impress your guests.

To this day I sometimes get a bit intimidated when I make it. You see, the secret with shrimp scampi is Mise En Place.

I discussed Mise En Place in a few of my posts (such as how to assemble the perfect salad.) Mise En Place is a culinary concept of getting all the ingredients together in one place before cooking. Obviously, it comes handy in a restaurant. But for most homemade dishes it’s not very practical. Shrimp scampi is a huge exception! Mise en place is what makes the difference between a hectic mess in your kitchen while your shrimp overcooks and perfectly executed, restaurant level shrimp scampi you can put together in about ten minutes!

Assembling your mise en place will likely be the most difficult part of this dish! But once it’s done, you are ten minutes away from this perfection.

My recipe includes cherry tomatoes. Don’t sweat it if you don’t have any, just omit. I didn’t have any last time I made it and the dish in the pictures was still phenomenal. If you ever feel like making your own pasta, this is an excellent dish to pair with freshly made pasta.

Interesting thing about scampi is that originally, it wasn’t actually made with shrimp. It was made with langoustines, lobster like crustaceans. But to make it more accessible, in North America, langoustines were eventually replaced with shrimp by many chefs. For this reason, we are not simmering our shrimp in sauce which is a traditional preparation for this dish, since shrimp cooks so much faster than langoustines.

You can enjoy it by itself, with some crusty bread, polenta, rice…

and of course pasta. With pasta arguably being the most natural pairing. Just make sure your pasta is cooked (or almost cooked) before you start making your scampi, as again, it will just take minutes to make. You can serve scampi over your pasta, alternatively, you can add pasta (that was cooked 1 minute less than the instructions on the pasta box) during step 5 of the recipe, right after the stock, to help the pasta absorb some of those delicious sauces while finishing cooking in the sauce.


Give this scampi a try and share your comments and pictures!


Yields4 Servings

 1 lb shrimp
 ¼ cup olive oil
 1 tsp kosher salt
 1 tsp red pepper flakes
 7 cloves of garlic, minced
 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
 ¼ cup white wine
 ½ chicken stock
 3 tbsp butter, cold
 2 tsp lemon juice, plus more according to taste
 1 salt and pepper ot taste
 1 tbsp parsley, for garnish
 capers, optional
 1 lb cooked pasta (you can also serve this with crusty bread, rice or polenta)

1

Season shrimp with kosher salt and let sit on a plate for 10-30 minutes while you get everything else together.

2

Heat olive oil in a large heavy pan on high heat until very hot and is beginning to smoke. Add shrimp in a single layer (likely you will only have room for half the shrimp.) Do not overcrowd the pan. Let cook for 1 minute undisturbed. After one minute toss the shrimp and continue cooking until pink all around and cooked through. The internal temperature should be 145. It should take 2 minutes of total cooking time; and it's very unlikely it will take more than 3 minutes. Be careful not to overcook as that will result in rubbery shrimp (don't undercook either to be sure shrimp is safe to eat.) Remove shrimp to a plate. Repeat with the remaining shrimp that didn't fit into the pan. Remove to a plate.

3

Add red pepper flakes, cherry tomatoes and garlic to the pan and cook on medium heat for about 30 seconds. The garlic should begin changing colour but not be fully brown. Deglaze with white wine. Ensure to scrape up all the little bits of the fond stuck to the bottom of the pan. Cook for a minute to reduce slightly.

4

Stir in the chicken stock and cook for another 2-3 minutes until reduced by about half. Add butter and stir with a wooden spoon as well as swirl the pan in a circular motion to emulsify your sauce into thick sauce. Add lemon juice and continue stirring and swirling the pan. Taste the sauce and season it with more salt and pepper, add more butter or lemon juice as needed.

5

Add back the shrimp and cook to until heated through. Remove from heat and serve by itself with crusty bread, over pasta, polenta or over rice. Sprinkle with some parsley. You may also toss in some capers. If your sauce emulsification breaks, add a bit more stock or water and swirl.

6

For professional restaurant-like finish, top this with breadcrumbs toasted with butter and some anchovy paste. This step is completely optional and for home cooking can be skipped to make things easier and not add extra calories.

Ingredients

 1 lb shrimp
 ¼ cup olive oil
 1 tsp kosher salt
 1 tsp red pepper flakes
 7 cloves of garlic, minced
 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
 ¼ cup white wine
 ½ chicken stock
 3 tbsp butter, cold
 2 tsp lemon juice, plus more according to taste
 1 salt and pepper ot taste
 1 tbsp parsley, for garnish
 capers, optional
 1 lb cooked pasta (you can also serve this with crusty bread, rice or polenta)

Directions

1

Season shrimp with kosher salt and let sit on a plate for 10-30 minutes while you get everything else together.

2

Heat olive oil in a large heavy pan on high heat until very hot and is beginning to smoke. Add shrimp in a single layer (likely you will only have room for half the shrimp.) Do not overcrowd the pan. Let cook for 1 minute undisturbed. After one minute toss the shrimp and continue cooking until pink all around and cooked through. The internal temperature should be 145. It should take 2 minutes of total cooking time; and it's very unlikely it will take more than 3 minutes. Be careful not to overcook as that will result in rubbery shrimp (don't undercook either to be sure shrimp is safe to eat.) Remove shrimp to a plate. Repeat with the remaining shrimp that didn't fit into the pan. Remove to a plate.

3

Add red pepper flakes, cherry tomatoes and garlic to the pan and cook on medium heat for about 30 seconds. The garlic should begin changing colour but not be fully brown. Deglaze with white wine. Ensure to scrape up all the little bits of the fond stuck to the bottom of the pan. Cook for a minute to reduce slightly.

4

Stir in the chicken stock and cook for another 2-3 minutes until reduced by about half. Add butter and stir with a wooden spoon as well as swirl the pan in a circular motion to emulsify your sauce into thick sauce. Add lemon juice and continue stirring and swirling the pan. Taste the sauce and season it with more salt and pepper, add more butter or lemon juice as needed.

5

Add back the shrimp and cook to until heated through. Remove from heat and serve by itself with crusty bread, over pasta, polenta or over rice. Sprinkle with some parsley. You may also toss in some capers. If your sauce emulsification breaks, add a bit more stock or water and swirl.

6

For professional restaurant-like finish, top this with breadcrumbs toasted with butter and some anchovy paste. This step is completely optional and for home cooking can be skipped to make things easier and not add extra calories.

Shrimp Scampi

Make it Low Carb/Keto/Paleo: if you do not allow wine within your diet, replace it with more chicken stock. Do not serve this with regular pasta, serve by itself or with Keto/Paleo approved sides.

Make it Dairy-Free: do not use butter.

Happens to be Gluten-Free: as with all gluten-free recipes, ensure all your ingredients are gluten free and not cross-contaminated. This includes your chicken stock and wine. If you are unsure if the wine you selected is gluten-free, replace it with chicken stock instead. Serve over Gluten-Free pasta.

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