Introduction: GARLIC SHRIMP WITH PROSCIUTTO, GREEN PEPPER & BLACK OLIVES
Since a local grocer advertised "Jumbo Shrimp" on sale for $8.99@lb, I went to the store and bought 1 1/2 pounds, even though they were certainly not JUMBO in size. Because I do not want to embarrass the store, I will not mention their name; however, the largest one (yes 1) shrimp was barely large in size and the rest of them were between medium and medium large (a lot of them were really small). Nevertheless, I bought them because they appeared to be really nice and fresh. (I got 53 shrimp, or about 36 shrimp per pound).
FOR THE RECORD, most resources concur that the number of shrimp per pound (with heads removed) is:
- 21 to 25 for Jumbo Shrimp
- 26 to 30 for Very Large Shrimp
- 31 to 35 for Large Shrimp
- 36 to 40 for Medium Large
- 41 to 40 for Medium
- 51 to 60 for Small
When I was a little kid going to school in Miami, we used to be able to buy 3 dozen shrimp for $1.00 at the local Bait & Tackle Store. Based on the above scale, those hearty crustaceans would have been rated as Large or Very Large Shrimp. We kept them alive in a floating bait bucket while we fished, and if we had any leftover after a fishing trip, my Mom would bring them home and cook them up.
Step 1: INGREDIENTS
- 1/2 pound raw shrimp (the biggest ones you can find), shelled and deveined.
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 4 gloves Garlic, Smashed, peeled, and chopped
- 2 TBS *Garlic Oil (more if needed)
- 3 Slices Prosciutto sliced into 1/2" strips (feel free to substitute fresh ham or bacon, but Prosciutto is best)
- 1/8 to 1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (Optional, but really complimentary to the dish)
- 1/4 Green Bell Pepper (or color of your choice); stem removed, seeded, and sliced into thin strips
- 1/3 Cup Black Olives (about 10 to 12), sliced in half
- 1/4 Cup Fine Dry Marsala Wine **(more if needed)
- A handfull of fresh Basil leaves, chopped, for Garnish
Smash and peel the cloves of one head of garlic. Place them in a small high-sided heavy pot with 1 Cup of Olive Oil (I prefer Extra Light Tasting Oil).
Cook over medium to medium high heat until the garlic begins to "bubble." - about 3 minutes; but don't let it brown. As soon as the garlic looks like it might be beginning to brown, turn down the heat to low and continue to cook for about 10 minutes. Let the oil cool to room temperature then store in a glass jar. It can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight glass container for at least a week
**1/4 Cup Marsala Wine (More if Needed - see next step)
Step 2: COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
- Heat 2 TBS of Garlic Oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat.
- When the oil is hot, add the chopped garlic and stir fry until it is golden (don't let it brown); using a slotted spoon,transfer the garlic to a small bowl.
- Add the Red Pepper Flakes if using, and the sliced Prosciutto; stir for 2 minutes or until the bacon starts to brown.
- Add the Bell Pepper and continue to stir fry until the pepper slices are softened (maybe 3 or 4 minutes)
- Add the Shrimp and saute over medium heat, stir-frying until the shrimp begin to turn pink (about 3 minutes).
- Add the Marsala wine, Black Olives & previously cooked garlic and simmer the mixture, turning the shrimp occasionally until the shrimp are cooked through (just another minute or two,depending on the size of the shrimp)
- Quickly taste the mixture before removing the pan from the stove, and add salt if needed.
- Remove pan from the burner.
**As regards the 1/4 cup of Marsala Wine: You want to have some liquid left in the pan when the shrimp mixture is ready to serve; it really enhances the dish, especially if you are going to serve it over rice or pasta, so if your shrimp mixture seems to be getting a little dry add some more wine, or even a few splashes of chicken or vegetable broth.
Transfer the shrimp to a serving dish (see next step)
Step 3: TIME TO EAT . . .
While the shrimp mixture was simmering I reheated some left-over Long Grain & wild Rice; then I placed some of the Garlic Shrimp over the rice and garnished it with a palm full of chopped fresh Basil leaves. That, plus a nice glass of chilled white wine made a fine dinner for me. So good so, that I returned to the pan and finished off the shrimp!
Step 4: NUTRITION
Nutrition for this recipe has been calculated to the best of my ability using the CALORIE COUNT RECIPE ANALYZER. Click on the image to enlarge.