For a rather warm spring-into-summer evening, I wanted something quick, easy, and light. Tuesday’s a fish day for us, so I thought some kind of shrimp dish might fit the bill. I found the perfect recipe in The Southern Italian Tableby Arthur Schwartz: Gamberi Oreganati.

All too often, Italian restaurants serve oreganato dishes (scampi, clams, etc.) on sizzling platters, reeking of burnt garlic, covered with greasy bread crumbs, and overwhelmed with herbs. This recipe, however, shows the more austere side of southern Italian, with large shrimp baked in a crunchy crust of lightly seasoned breadcrumbs. The restrained use of olive oil, finely minced garlic, and dried oregano allows the flavor of the shrimp to come through the crisp breading.

Gamberi Oreganati
Shrimp Baked with Flavored Bread Crumbs from The Southern Italian Table by Arthur Schwartz
Serves 2 to 3

1/3 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large garlic clove, very finely chopped (about 1 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon hot paprika
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound cleaned large or jumbo shrimp (20 to 24 to the pound)
Lemon wedges

Place a rack on the top rung of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
Combine the bread crumbs, salt, garlic, oregano, paprika, and olive oil in a large mixing bowl. Stir well.
Add the shrimp to the bowl and toss until all the shrimp are coated with crumbs.
Arrange the shrimp in a single layer in a 10-inch baking pan or on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with the remaining crumbs.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until the shrimp are cooked through.
Serve immediately with lemon wedges.

Wine Pairing: Fiano di Avellino, Falanghina, Pinot Grigio

2 thoughts on “Gamberi Oreganati

  1. What a delicious recipe, my entire family enjoyed it and have requested it several times now (terrific with fish fillets also!). I have a hard time getting the bread crumb mixture to stick to the shrimp or fish. I wonder if I’m doing something wrong? I basically try to coat them, (unsuccessfully) then just top them all with the mixture once they are laid out on the sheet pan. I just discovered your website recently and really enjoy it, thank you!

    1. Thank you so much. This coating is not like ones for fried shrimp; not all the bread crumbs will stick to the shrimp. Sprinkle any excess over the shrimp and they’ll toast along with the shrimp and be quite tasty.

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