Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Healthy Shrimp Scampi

I have been craving shrimp recently... and by recently I mean in the last few months. Oddly enough I've never been a shrimp lover until that recent craving began and now I can't get enough of it. So when I was looking through the fridge for dinner the other night and saw I had some frozen shrimp, I knew that was going to be the star of the show in my next big dinner.
Like most of my recipes, this one was super easy and healthy! I used quinoa as opposed to angel hair pasta (quinoa is now my boyfriend's favorite word), and left out the butter and heavy salt. To give it a little extra kick and avoid being bland, I added some cayenne pepper to the shrimp. The cayenne pepper mixed with the lemon zest added a little zing to every bite, which I always appreciate.

I really can't even say enough good things about this recipe. It came together nicely, was filling without needing seconds and just tasted so darn good. Only thing missing was more shrimp... but that can easily be fixed next time around.

Wine recommendation: Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc (my personal favorite)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes

Healthy Shrimp Scampi
Serves 4

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 large red bell pepper, diced
2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound frozen shrimp
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1.5 teaspoons cornstarch
Juice of 1 lemon
Cayenne pepper for taste
Italian seasoning for taste
1 cup quinoa

  1. Prepare the quinoa following the directions on the package.
  2. Prepare your red bell pepper, asparagus and lemon zest.
  3. Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  4. Cook vegetables, lemon zest, and salt/pepper in skillet for about 6 minutes until softened. Remove from heat and place in a bowl and cover.
  5. While vegetables are cooking, mince the cloves of garlic.
  6. Mix the cornstarch and chicken broth in a bowl until smooth.
  7. Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil and garlic to the pan, cooking and stirring for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the shrimp to the mix and cook for 2 minutes covered.
  8. Add the cayenne pepper and remaining salt, stir and cover again for a minute. Add broth mixture to the pan, bring to a boil and stir until sauce thickens.
  9. When sauce is at desired thickness and shrimp is cooked all the way through, remove from pan and add to bowl of vegetables.
  10. Mix thoroughly and add italian seasoning and lemon juice.
  11. Serve the vegetables, shrimp, and sauce over quinoa.

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