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Shrimp Scampi with Pernod

Shrimp Scampi with Pernod

 
Nothing says spring time quite like Pernod and shrimp. We have gone the extra mile and combined the two.

Shrimp Scampi with Pernod

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. shrimp (21 to 25 per lb.), peeled, deveined, rinsed, and patted dry
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt; more as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra­virgin olive oil
  • 3 cups very thinly sliced fennel (1 small to medium bulb, trimmed and cored first)
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1⁄2 cup dry white wine*
  • 1/4 cup Pernod (French anise­flavor liqueur)
  • 1 14­1/2­oz. can petite­diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh fennel fronds
  • 1/2 tsp. each chopped fresh thyme and mint
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat­leaf parsley

Directions:

  1. Sprinkle the shrimp with a scant 1/4 tsp. salt and a few generous grinds of black pepper.
  2. Put a 12-inch skillet (not nonstick) over medium-high heat for 1-1/2 minutes.
  3. Add 2 Tbs. of the oil and once it’s simmering hot, add the shrimp in a single layer.
  4. Cook undisturbed until the shrimp browns nicely, about 2 minutes.
  5. Flip the shrimp and brown the other side, about 1-1/2 minutes.
  6. Transfer to a large plate. The shrimp should still be a little under cooked.
  7. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the remaining 2 Tbs. oil and the fennel and garlic.
  8. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. salt and cook, tossing often, until the fennel is very soft and golden brown in places, 6 to 8 minutes.
  9. Carefully add the Pernod (it may flame up) and cook, stirring, until any flames die out and the Pernod has almost evaporated, about 1 minute.
  10. Add the tomatoes and wine, the thyme, mint and about half the parsley.
  11. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 3 minutes to meld the flavors.
  12. Add the shrimp, and cook, tossing, until opaque throughout (cut one in half to check), 1 to 2 minutes.
  13. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  14. Serve immediately over pasta or Basmati rice, sprinkled with the remaining parsley.
  15. You could also serve this as a fantastic appetizer, with slices of a good crusty bead, brushed with olive oil and lightly toasted

Recipe courtesy of Richard and Bella

Wine Pairing:

  • Our first choice is Helena Valley Helenental, Gruner Veltliner 2013 ($17.99) from Austria. This high acid, intensely fruit flavored white, has a natural affinity for herbs and seafood. Other ideas would be Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley of France such as Pascal Jolivet, Sancerre ($29.99) or a South African version such as Neal Ellis’ “Sincerely” ($16.99)
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