Having endless hours at home these days, I decided to do some housecleaning on my computer, deleting old emails, files, and photos that were just taking up a lot of space. This chore eventually led me to the largest folder on my Mac, labeled “Recipes.”
I use this folder to collect ideas for posts from online sources like Epicurious, Food & Wine, the New York Times “Cooking” site, and the like. Not surprisingly it’s huge, bulging with recipes, some dating back six or seven years. Almost all of them include source information, which facilitates giving credit to their originators.
When this information is missing, however, it’s usually easy to track it down with a Google search. But one recipe proved untraceable even after almost an hour’s search. The file name was the same as the recipe’s: “Shrimp with Herbes de Provence.” Although my Googling yielded some likely candidates, none matched the recipe in my file. I finally gave up, but decided to keep the file anyway.
A few days later, when my husband suggested trying “something new” (code for non-Italian) for a pound of shrimp we had the fridge, it didn’t take me long to decide what to make: Shrimp with Herbes de Provence, which for this post I have decided to attribute to Chef Disparu.
The recipe yielded a delicious, weeknight dish that far exceeded our expectations. The shrimp were perfectly tender, and their sweet, briny flavor was perfectly complemented by the Provencal blend of thyme, basil, savory, fennel, and lavender. A touch of spice from the pepperoncino enlivened the buttery sauce, which also had a subtle tomato flavor.
For the recipe’s suggested saffron rice, I substituted turmeric and served the dish accompanied by a nicely chilled, crisp Sauvignon Blanc.
Shrimp with Herbes de Provence (adapted from a recipe by Chef Disparu)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 dried peperoncino or ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¾ cup grape tomatoes, halved
Freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ tablespoons herbes de Provence
1 ½ pound large (21/25) EZ peel shrimp, shell on, de-veined
¼ cup dry vermouth
1 tablespoon butter
¼ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
1. In a skillet large enough to hold the shrimp in a single layer, add the olive oil, garlic, and pepperoncino. Simmer over low heat until the garlic turns light gold. About 5 to 6 minutes.
2. Add the tomatoes, herbes de Provence, salt, and pepper and cook over low heat until tomatoes start to break down and release their juices. If using peperoncino, remove it.
3. Raise the heat to medium, add the shrimp, season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2-minutes, or until the shrimp turn pink.
4. Turn the shrimp and cook for another 2 minutes.
5. Add the wine, cover, and cook for an additional two minutes.
6. With a slotted spoon, remove the shrimp and keep warm, leaving the sauce in the pan.
7. Raise the heat to high, add the butter, and cook for one or two minutes to thicken the sauce.
8. Pour the sauce over the shrimp, sprinkle with parsley, and serve on heated plates.
Serve with saffron rice or crusty French bread.
Wine Pairing: Provence Rose, Sauvignon Blanc