This one was amazingly easy and came out great. I’d already bought shrimp for dinner. I hemmed and hawed between making a simple scampi and doing a dry-cooked szechuan shrimp, and then I played the episode of America’s Test Kitchen my DVR recorded today where they did this recipe (mostly), and cooked this one up immediately after watching it.
First, I peeled the shrimp (3/4 pound) and then brined ’em in a bowl of water with a tablespoon each of salt & sugar, for about 15 minutes.
I took the shells and sauteed ’em in some olive oil until they turned pink & fragrant, then added 1/2 cup of water to make a little fresh shrimp broth. I let it simmer maybe 5 minutes, then removed the shells and set aside for later.
Into the main saute pan: half an onion, chopped – three garlic cloves, sliced (not minced – overwhelming garlic flavor that way), a few pinches of red pepper flakes, maybe 1/4 tsp of ground black pepper, and a few pinches of kosher salt – all cooked in some olive oil for a few minutes until golden and soft.
Added a 1/4 tsp of fish sauce (they used actual anchovies on TV), then added 1/2 can of chopped tomato, and 1/2 can of cannelini beans with their liquid, along with the shrimp broth. Brought it up to near boil, then simmered it, covered, for 15 minutes.
Added the drained/patted dry shrimp, mixed in, recovered & let simmer for 7-10 minutes.
At the end, hit it with some lemon juice & basil (on TV they also added lemon zest).
It looked thicker on TV than what I finished with, but this was easily taken care of by removing shrimp/beans/tomato/whatever with a slotted spoon & then cooking down the remainder for only a few minutes.
Good stuff – a wonderful mix of shrimp flavor with hits of the pepper, and then followed by the lemon and basil combo, all mellowed by the creaminess of the beans. HELL YEAH!
I had it with some ciabatta bread (any good crunchy bread’ll do), side salad and a pinot grigio.
Then I watched the rest of the America’s Test Kitchen episode, and their top rated manual pasta making machine turned out to be the most expensive $75 retail Atlas 150, the one I FOUND AT A THRIFT STORE, USED ONLY ONCE MAYBE, STILL IN ITS BOX, FOR ONLY FIFTEEN BUCKS!!!!