Scampi is a simple seafood dish that is perfect to make when you’re hosting or have a large family. It is a meal enjoyed worldwide and can be made with shrimp, prawns or lobsters. Many cooks prefer using shrimp because the crustaceans give the dish a wonderful texture and slightly sweet flavor. This tutorial will guide you on how to make shrimp scampi. There are also additional cooking tips to learn how to make this dish at home.
Choosing Your Shrimp Scampi Ingredients
When it comes to cooking with seafood, freshness is paramount. You can find fresh shrimp at almost any grocer and food market in your area. Although frozen shrimp offers a longer shelf life, it does not offer the same taste as fresh shrimp. Many cooks avoid using frozen products because the texture tends to be mushy and the taste is not as sweet.
For best presentation, try to find the biggest shrimp available. Not only does large shrimp look impressive on a plate, it also offers more meat for your family and guests. Because shrimp scampi needs a lot of sauce, the seafood flavor of small shrimp is likely to be overcome by garlic.
- 2 lbs. fresh shrimp
- Salt and black pepper to season
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ large onion, sliced
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 cup sliced white mushrooms
- ½ cup wine, white
- ½ cup stock, preferably seafood stock
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Before learning how to make shrimp scampi, you first need to shell and devein the shrimp properly. Gently peel off the shell off of each shrimp, only leaving the tails. Season the shrimp with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Coat a large pan with olive oil and place it over medium high heat. Add shrimp and sauté until it starts to turn pink. Remove from heat and transfer shrimp into a bowl. Set aside for later.
- Sauté onion slices in the same pan for 2 minutes or until soft and translucent.
- Add garlic and mushrooms, then sauté for another 2 minutes.
- Pour in the lemon juice, wine and seafood stock. Return the shrimp to the pan.
- Add butter and allow it to melt in the liquids. Combine ingredients thoroughly and dish out on a large plate to serve. You can top this on rice or pasta.
Tips on How to Make Shrimp Scampi
Scampi can be served with a variety of carbs. Traditionally, it is either served on a bed of white rice or pasta. If you prefer rice, choose brown or wild rice to optimize nutrients and make the meal more filling. Brown and wild rice also contain fiber that supports the digestive system. If you prefer pasta, make sure it is cooked until al dente and opt for whole wheat pasta if possible. Using unsalted butter is also highly recommended. You can serve shrimp scampi alone with tartar sauce, seasoned with fresh herbs like parsley, rosemary or basil. Also, check out this simple shrimp scampi recipe topped over spaghetti.