I was growing a bit tired of my traditional recipe for shrimp scampi and decided to update it by adding ginger to the herbed butter sauce. The ginger turned out to be another way to reduce the amount of salt in the original recipe, always a plus in our family. Grating the ginger is easier and faster than finely chopping it, at least with my knife skills!
If you are a big fan of cooking with ginger, consider doubling the amount of fresh ginger in the sauce. I love its peppery, fresh flavor and use it in main dishes, chutneys, vinaigrettes and fresh fruit desserts. A sprinkling of red pepper flakes before serving gives a kick of some additional heat. I didn’t add any because it makes Larry choke and he is my favorite dinner partner…
Serve this with hot bread, over pasta or polenta. Since I’m counting carbs these days, I ate my shrimp plain and grilled some excellent sour dough for Larry to have with his meal.
TIP: Boiling the garlic briefly removes the “bite” from it. You are left with plenty of garlic flavor that has a smoother, nuttier taste that doesn’t overwhelm the dish.
- 1 head of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound extra large shrimp, peeled and deveined (12-15 count per pound)
- 3 tablespoons flat-leaved parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon thyme leaves, or any fresh thyme
- 1-2 tablespoons of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons dry sherry
- zest of 2 Meyer lemons
- ¼ cup fresh Meyer lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
- Using a small saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the peeled garlic cloves and boil for 2-3 minutes. Drain and chop the garlic finely.
- In a large skillet, heat the oil. Add the shrimp, garlic, parsley, thyme and ginger. Add the salt and pepper and cook shrimp over high heat for 2 minutes. Flip them over and cook for 2 more minutes. Add the sherry and cook for 1 minute, then, using a slotted spoon, remove shrimp and set aside, covering them to keep warm.
- Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, butter and cornstarch to the skillet. Cook over low heat, stirring, until sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Add the shrimp back into the sauce, cook for a minute or so, then serve. Add red pepper flakes, if desired.