This dish is ubiquitous in Spain. I ordered it at almost every dive and tapas bar I came across and found it to be universally fantastic. The quantities of oil and booze may seem extravagant, but as this dish vigorously boils into a tasty union, the rich and deliciously flavored sauce becomes as desirable as the shrimp themselves.
1/3 cup olive oil
8 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
4 dried arbol or Calabrian chiles or 2 teaspoons crushed red chile flakes
2 bay leaves
1 1/4 pounds medium Gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
3/4 cup white wine
1 slug brandy (optional)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
Crusty bread, for serving
Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over high heat. Add the garlic, chiles, and bay leaves, and cook until the garlic begins to color. Carefully add the shrimp and toss to coat with oil, then spread evenly in the pan and cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip the shrimp, then add the wine and brandy, if using, and bring to a boil. Add the lemon juice and parsley and season generously with salt. Remove from the heat and stir everything together. Serve immediately with plenty of crusty bread.
Reprinted with permission from Two If By Sea © 2016 by Barton Seaver, Sterling Epicure, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. Photography by Michael Piazza
Each week, The Splendid Table brings you stories that expand your world view, inspire you to try something new and show how food brings us together. We rely on you to do this. And, when you donate, you'll become a member of The Splendid Table Co-op. It's a community of like-minded individuals who love good food, good conversation and kitchen companionship. Splendid Table Co-op members will get exclusive content each month and have special opportunities for connecting with The Splendid Table team.
Donate today for as little as $5.00 a month. Your gift only takes a few minutes and has a lasting impact on The Splendid Table and you'll be welcomed into The Splendid Table Co-op.