Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Devil Made Me Do It

Fra Diavolo (Brother Devil) showed up on Tuesday evening for dinner. Actually Frank, not the devil, came down for dinner and requested that I make Mussels Fra Diavolo. Easy I thought, and it was with a recipe I found on-line from Lydia Bastianich. I added the mussels to this Shrimp Fra Diavolo recipe for a traditional spicy red sauce. IMHO it was great, with just the right amount of heat.  The heat factor can be increased or decreased by adding more or less red pepper flakes. I followed the recipe and found it to be perfect for my taste (I don't care for very spicy food, wimp that I can be). Frank declared this to be a "thumbs- up" preparation. We served it with 1/2 pound linguine for the two of us and had leftovers. The recipe serves 6 but can easily be adjusted. Any changes that I made to the original recipe are in red italics. So here it is...

Shrimp in a Fra Diavolo sauce
Lidia Bastianich
This dish is excellent served as a main course or as a dressing for pasta. We used 1/2 pound linguine (not included in recipe)
         6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
         6 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
         2 1/2 pounds jumbo shrimp (about 30) peeled and deveined (I used about 12 jumbo shrimp and 18 fresh mussels for two servings).
         One 35-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes (preferably San Marzano), cored and coarsely crushed (I used about 2/3 of a 28 oz can of Cento brand San Marzano tomatoes.
         8 fresh basil leaves, torn into quarters
         2 tablespoons minced fresh Italian parsley
         1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (adjust to taste)
Heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and cook, shaking the pan, until golden. This takes about one minute. Add as many shrimp as fit in a single layer with some space between each. If you crowd the shrimp, they will steam in their own juices rather than get crunchy with a lightly browned exterior. Cook, tuning once, until lightly golden, about three minutes. Sprinkle with salt to taste.
With a slotted spoon, transfer the shrimp to a plate, leaving as much garlic as possible in the pan.
Pour the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the tomatoes into the skillet, season with salt and crushed red pepper, and bring to a vigorous boil. Lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer and cook until it is lightly thickened. After about 5 minutes, add the mussels to the sauce. Simmer another 5 to 10 minutes.  The mussels are done with they open. 
Stir in the cooked shrimp, basil and parsley and cook until the shrimp are heated through. This takes just a few seconds. Do not overcook the shrimp.

Add cooked pasta and toss with the sauce. Serve and enjoy. 

Serving Size
Serves six

1 comment:

Pat said...

Oh, yum!! I have a sudden inexplicable craving for these shrimp and mussels. Guess what we're having for dinner tonight??