Those of you searching for a delicious, easy and quick meal for your family tonight, click no further, because this is the dish for you. In under a half hour you can be spooning these tasty shrimp over a serving of your favorite rice, or if you have a few more minutes to spare, you may want to whip up a blue-cheese polenta as we did, and prepare to be WOWED.
This dish is my adaptation of a recipe I found in “Fine Cooking” recently, and it’s one I already know I’ll go back to again and again. I changed some ingredient proportions, added some different herbs and spices (the coriander and oregano) as well as the lemon, but the technique remains true to the original. Provided you have a source for good quality, peeled and deveined shrimp, this dish is exceedingly easy to put together, all you basically have to do is chuck all the ingredients in a baking dish and toss it in the oven.
Do be careful about your timing, because there is nothing worse than dried-out, overcooked shrimp. Actually, that’s not true, there are plenty of things worse then dried-out, overcooked shrimp, but there is hardly anything better than perfectly cooked shrimp, a faint orange-pink in color, and a tender, juicy pearlescent white inside. Therefore, I recommend that you check these at about the 8 minute mark by cutting one open to see that its cooked in the center to “opaque”. Don’t worry if it seems a little soft, it will continue to firm up as it rests in the hot oil before serving.
This dish would be great over your favorite rice, but we had ours served over a blue-cheese polenta, and it was FABULOUS! Don’t forget a nice crusty loaf of bread with which to soak up all the delicious oil.
Cheers – Steve
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 fresh thyme sprigs
- 3 large fresh rosemary sprigs, cut in half
- 3 fresh oregano sprigs
- 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 large lemon
- 2 lbs. extra-large shrimp (26 to 30 per lb.), preferably wild, peeled and deveined
- 2 Tbs. white wine vinegar
- Kosher salt to taste
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F.
- Cut the lemon in half top to bottom (tip to tip), then take one half of ther lemon, place it on its flat (cut) surface, and slice across into thin half-moon shapes. Take the other half of the lemon, place IT on its flat side, then cut it top to tip to tip again, then across into 10-12 chunks.
- Place the peppercorns and coriander seeds in a mortar and pestle and crush until well cracked and broken.
- Pour the oil into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Add the herb sprigs, pepper and coriander, and the lemon chunks. Bake until the oil mixture is fragrant, about 12-15 minutes.
- Add the shrimp to the dish and toss with tongs until coated, and top with the half-moon slices of lemon. Bake the shrimp until pink and firm, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Remove the dish from the oven, add the vinegar and kosher salt to taste, toss well, and let rest at room temperature until the oil cools slightly, about 5 minutes, before serving.