Shrimp Scampi Florentine Recipe

Shrimp Scampi FlorentineThis Shrimp Scampi Florentine recipe is not only easy to make, but also incredibly delicious. It’s full of healthy and tasty vegetables, and none of the heavy cream that a lot of the shrimp pasta dishes out there rely on. You could easily expect to pay $25 for a dish of this caliber at a fine Italian restaurant, but why not make it at home and save some cash without compromising taste?

This recipe is also delicious minus the shrimp as an awesome vegetarian pasta dish!

This recipe SERVES 2.

Shrimp Scampi Florentine – What You’ll Need:

  • 8-12 large shrimp
  • One bag fresh spinach
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 10 Cremini mushrooms
  • One jar marinated artichokes
  • One small can sliced black olives
  • 2-4 servings fettuccine
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp dried or fresh thyme
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup white wine (optional)
  • Fresh lemon
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • A few sprigs fresh parsley

Ingredients for Shrimp Scampi Florentine

Shrimp Scampi Florentine – What You’ll Need to Do:

Get the water boiling for the fettuccine (do not add pasta yet), cut the mushrooms into quarters, and peel and clean the shrimp. Coat the shrimp with some olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, thyme, and oregano. Then set the shrimp aside. Heat a large skillet over a medium flame and add the olive oil, red pepper flakes, thyme, and oregano. Then cook until mushrooms start to brown. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Grate two cloves of garlic into the pan, and then add the drained marinated artichokes and black olives. Cook for a couple minutes over medium-high heat, then add the white wine (optional) and reduce to a tablespoon or so of liquid. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the directions on the box.

At this point, add half a bag of spinach to the pan and cook just until it wilts. Then push all the items in the pan to the perimeter and add a tablespoon of butter to the center. After the butter foams up, add the shrimp to the center of the pan and cook on both sides until the shrimp turn pink. Douse with some fresh lemon juice.

When the shrimp are done, remove them from the pan and set aside so that they do not overcook. Drain the pasta and add it into the pan with the vegetables. Toss it all together and add the Parmesan cheese and give it another toss until the cheese is fully incorporated.

Separate the pasta and vegetables into two serving bowls then place the shrimp on top. Sprinkle on some more Parmesan, fresh cracked black pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste. Finally, top with some freshly chopped Italian flat leaf parsley.

Mangia!

Shrimp Scampi Florentine - Serves 2

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Sauteed Squash Side Dish Recipe

Get Squashed!Sauteed Squash with Roasted Chicken Thighs

This sauteed squash side dish recipe is a great option for light summery meals or brisk Autumn nights. Pictured here with roasted organic chicken thighs (recipe coming soon), this side dish is an easy, healthy accompaniment to a variety of proteins including fish and pork. And although not technically a squash, eggplant works great in this dish as well.

Sauteed Squash – What you’ll need:

  • 3 (large) to 6 (small) assorted squashes including yellow squash, zucchini, or eggplant (pictured)
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil and/or butter
  • 2 tsp Kosher or sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced fine

Herbs and Spices

Sauteed Squash – What you’ll need to do:

Slice the squashes on the bias (at an angle) into about 1/4-inch pieces, discarding the very top and bottom pieces. Place a large saute pan over medium heat and then add the olive oil and/or butter to the pan. Add the red pepper flakes, oregano, and thyme to the pan. Then add the sliced squash. Give it a quick toss in the oil, then add the salt, pepper, and granulated garlic.

Saute the squash

Cook with the lid on for about 10 minutes, giving it a toss occasionally. You want to brown the pieces that are at the bottom of the pile; the browning gives the squash a great flavor. Then add the minced garlic and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes, again with the lid on the pan. When the squash is completely tender, turn off the heat. You can keep the dish covered and it should stay warm and steamy for a while if the rest of your dinner isn’t yet complete.

For additional kitchen tips, check out this article on how to organize and store herbs and spices.

Sauteed squash with roasted chicken thighs

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How to Organize and Store Dried Herbs and Spices

Maybe you’re like most people who have a cabinet full of assorted McCormick jars that fall out on your head whenever you open the spice cabinet. Or maybe you have a fancy countertop spice rack taking up space and exposing your fragile herbs and spices to harmful sunlight that breaks down flavors.

Herbs and spices on turntableIf you’re looking for a neat and economical way to organize your herbs and spices, a simple turntable (Lazy Susan) and a set of spice shaker jars will do the trick quite nicely. You should be buying your dried herbs and spices in bulk anyway, so you’ll need a container for them besides whatever bag or tub they came. This way you can shake them out onto your foods if you’re not scooping and measuring them for marinades or rubs. Just label the spice jar with a permanent marker or use a label maker if you want something fancier.

 

 

Magnetic spice tinsI also have a set of magnetic spice tins that can be stuck to the side of the fridge, or better yet, to a magnetic strip mounted to the inside of a cabinet to avoid that light issue I mentioned earlier. These are good for things that you wouldn’t shake anyway like bay leaves or whole nutmegs.

You’ll have to measure your cabinet’s width and depth to determine the diameter of the Lazy Susan (also called turntables) you should buy. Double-decker models are also available.

The Lowdown on Herbs and Spices

Fresh herbs are almost always preferable to dried. Dried oregano is still pretty useful however. I also usually keep dried thyme and rosemary on hand if fresh isn’t an option. Dried parsley and cilantro are pretty much tasteless, so I never buy those.

Try to buy whole spices such as cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and even mustard seeds. For the best flavor, toast these briefly in a dry skillet, and then grind them in a mortar and pestle or a dedicated coffee grinder/spice grinder. Do not grind your coffee beans and spices in the same grinder. Also, ground spices tend to lose their flavor after 6 months, so toss those spice jars that have been sitting around your kitchen since the Clinton administration.

Lastly, try to avoid keeping your spices in a cabinet above the oven/range. Frequent exposure to heat will diminish their flavor just like light does.

Herbs and spices on turntable spinning

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