Friday, October 14, 2011

Marseille-Style Shrimp Stew from Food and Wine

It has been 8 weeks since my daughter was born and in some ways, I'm glad to be back in the kitchen.  This week I'm making 3 meals from the new issue of Food and Wine, October 2011, which praises things French.  Last night we had Roast Beef with Root-Vegetable-and-Green-Peppercorn Salad, tomorrow we will have the Chicken Baked on a Bed of Bread and Swiss Chard and tonight, of course, we will be having the Marseille-Style Shrimp Stew.

Don't bypass Bon Appetit or Food and Wine because you think the recipes are too long or complicated for a weeknight.  Tonight's active time is 45 minutes, and it is 30 minutes for the other two recipes.  And, it doesn't have to be perfect.  It will still be good if you are missing an ingredient or two:-)

Here is the recipe with my pictures and comments:

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, cored and finely chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Three 1-inch strips of orange zest
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup bottled clam juice
  • 1 cup canned whole tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Toasted baguettes, for serving
  1. In a bowl, mash the garlic with a pinch of salt. Whisk in the mayonnaise, lemon juice, paprika and cayenne. Whisk in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Set the rouille aside. 
Comment:  I skipped the paprika because I didn't feel like digging it out of my spice cabinet.   And, I skipped the saffron in the next section for the same reason!

2.In a large, deep skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil until shimmering. Add the fennel and onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, 7 minutes. Add the garlic, orange zest and ground cloves and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until nearly evaporated, 5 minutes. Add the clam juice, tomatoes, saffron and 1 cup of water and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until the sauce is reduced by half, 10 minutes.

Comment:  I used ground cloves as I didn't have any whole cloves.  Here's a tip:  Don't dirty your kitchen by chopping up the whole tomatoes as the recipe suggests.  I like to put them into the pot and use my metal spatula to chop them.  Also, I used a zester, which sort-of grates the orange and put in far more zest than called for by the recipe.

3.  Add the shrimp to the skillet, cover and cook over moderate heat, turning once, until cooked, 5 minutes. Discard the zest. Spread the rouille on toasts and serve with the stew.

 Comment:  I accidentally purchased frozen "cooked" shrimp at Fresh Market though I meant to grab a bag of frozen raw.  Too often people stress if they cannot follow a recipe exactly.  Case in point, I've changed or omitted a  good bit of things about this recipe, measured nothing and I'm sure it will still be a fine meal for a weeknight.  I hope you'll give ones of these recipes a try! 

 Bon Appetit!