Saturday, February 5, 2011

Bittman's Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish

The Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish 2

The dish I'm sharing with you today comes from Mark Bittman's weighty tome, "How to Cook Everything" (though I actually referenced it on the HTCE iPhone application), and is another contribution to Make it with ..... Mondays, challenge paprika as well as to the latest Tackling Bittman Recipe Hop.

"The Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish" is Bittman's own title for this dish and, to be honest, it is so good and so deliciously simple that it is hard to imagine a more fitting name for it.  If you buy shrimp which have already been peeled and cleaned, then the only work involved is a bit of garlic preparation and parsley chopping - hardly what you would call labour intensive.  The actual cooking is even less demanding.  I served this dish with some saffron rice, and the shrimps can basically be prepped and cooked in the time it takes to cook the rice, which is what I call perfect timing.

The sauce is gloriously garlicky and redolent with the smoky aroma of the paprika, and was beautiful served over rice, but would be equally good with some pasta or fresh crusty bread to mop up all that wonderful sauce.  This dish would also be perfect served with a variety of other dishes as part of a selection of tapas.

Of one thing you can be certain - no matter which way you serve this, you will be asked for it over and over again.

The Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish Recipe
Adapted from Mark Bittman's
Makes 2 generous servings
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe

extra virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
300g shrimp, peeled and deveined
flaky sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon hot paprika
chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Pour enough extra virgin olive oil into a large skillet to liberally cover the bottom of the pan.  Set the pan over low heat, warm the oil, add the garlic, and cook until it turns golden.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add the shrimp.  Sprinkle over some flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper;  add the cumin, and the paprika.  Stir to blend and continue to cook, shaking the pan occasionally and turning the shrimp over a couple of times, until they are pink and the mixture is bubbly - about 5 minutes.

The Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish 3

Garnish with the parsley and serve immediately.

The Simplest & Best Shrimp Dish 1

Interested in cooking some more with Mark Bittman?  I highly recommend any of these Mark Bittman books:

How to Cook Everything, Completely Revised 10th Anniversary Edition: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food   How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food   Mark Bittman's Kitchen Express: 404 inspired seasonal dishes you can make in 20 minutes or less

Available from Amazon, Book Depository UK, and Fishpond NZ

This post is submitted to "Making it with ..... Mondays" # 4, challenge paprika (there's still time to join in - linky will be open until 11.59 am, Monday 7 February) and the Tackling Bittman Recipe Hop Volume 4 (linky will be open until 11.59 pm, Thursday 10 February).  I'd love you to get cooking either with some paprika or Bittman, or maybe a combination of both, then come on over and join in the fun.

Make it with ..... Mondays      Bittman Button

This post is also linked to "Let's Do Brunch" at My Sweet & Savory and Food on Friday hosted by Carole at Carole's Chatter.


  1. I have some frozen, peeled prawns in my freezer, will have to give this a try soon. Sounds just wonderful, like it definitely lives up to the title.

  2. Hi Laura - frozen peeled prawns was exactly what I used too. This is a great stand-by for a quick and very easy meal or appetiser for a crowd.
    Sue :-)

  3. I would love this with lots of crusty bread to soak up the yummy garlicy juices! Sue, I left you a message on Facebook - I need your help, lol!

  4. omygosh! Shrimp is my most favorite food. I will trade my Eggplant Mushroom Parm for this dish anyday. Thank you for sharing this recipe.! :)

    Have a great weekend,

  5. Sue - You and I are on the same page this week. I made a garlicky shrimp dish too. It really hits the spot, right?

    Yours looks delicious and I love the additions of paprika and cumin. Lots of flavor in this dish!

    Have a great weekend.

  6. Please share! I am hungry just looking at the photos.

  7. That looks so good!!! I will have to make it soon.

  8. Sue!! Thank you for this - I make a lot of shrimp and will definitely try this.

  9. Love prawns and love paprika...this may well be dinner tomorrow. Thanks Sue.

  10. Hiii Sue , i missed ya :-)
    This is soooo wonderful ,im glad to be back here coz i so want to be a part of Make it Mondays:-)
    And if i make this one soooonn will be back here soon!

  11. Thanks everyone for your visits and lovely kind comments - I know you'll love this dish - it truly is perfect for that flavourful dinner in 10 minute fix.

    Sue xo

  12. Sue, your first pictures, makes me to go all salivating, i love garlic and shrimp what a heavenly combination :)

  13. That first photo of the shrimp is gorgeous. And you know. I don't even LIKE shrimp.

  14. I just made a Farfalle with Shrimp and Lemon Greek Sauce last night. I put paprika in it, too! I also have my Angry Shrimp Pasta on my website. I've been on a shrimp kick, I guess :-) Your photos look outstanding and yet again, Mark Bittman wows us with absolute simplicity. I must really get his book!

  15. I can't eat shrimp but I sure appreciate the look of this, Sue. Your photos are tempting and I bet you sold many on making this. We have to give Bittman some credit so thanks for linking this up to one of our favorite places, Tackling Bittman.

  16. OK--definitely tagging this one to make--it looks perfect. BTW--Still trying to get my act together to join in a Make it With Mondays one of these days. ;-)

  17. Enjoyed reading your blog.Just Fantastic!

  18. I made a dish quite similar recently and just love how easy it is to whip up something so tasty. I tossed in pasta (fusili) in mine :)

  19. Sue,
    your shrimp look wonderful! Good thing I have some frozen shrimp waiting for a good recipe. :)
    About my cake... the drunk pear one, I used Bittmans recipe but with pears instead of apples.
    It really is delicious!

  20. Thanks everyone for all your overwhelmingly lovely comments - seems like a whole lot of shrimp lovers out there :-)

    Sue xo

  21. Hi Sue-I'm so happy you found my blog, and I appreciate your kind comment. Your shrimp dish by Mark Bittman's is absolutely gorgeous.

    I love his book, and it truly is my "bible" cook book. My daughter and I keep passing it back and forth to each other, she loves so many simple and great things in the book, as well.
    I'm so following your blog, hope you will do the same.

    I sure would love to stay in touch, and hook up to the Bittman recipe hop for Thurs.
    Sounds like so much fun, and really looking forward to it!


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