Scampi is, hands down, my favorite way to eat shrimp. In my opinion, you just cannot beat the combination of lemon and garlic with most seafood, especially shellfish. I love to prepare shrimp with lemon, garlic, and olive oil every which way: skewered on the grill or sautéed on the stove top, served over rice or pasta, or over a big green salad with some warm crusty bread.
I have been making this particular version of shrimp scampi since high school. High school! I remember the first time I ever made it was for a group of my fellow students that were about to embark on a Senior class trip to Italy. We were all tasked with bringing an Italian dish to share with everyone at our last planning meeting, and after scouring all of my mother’s cookbooks and recipe cards, this is what I decided on. Of course, the things that we kids prepared didn’t even come close to the food that we were about to enjoy in Italy, but I loved this scampi so much that I haven’t tried another recipe since.
Perhaps you spied some snow peas in that bowl. That was my lazy way of sneaking some veggies to our dinner without having to make a salad! I just sautéed about two cups of snow peas in olive oil for two minutes and added them to the dish at the very end. They were a great addition, even if they’re not traditional!
Linguine with Shrimp Scampi
Source: adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Family Style
1 Tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, separated
3/4 pound linguine
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons minced garlic (about 4 cloves)
1 pound large shrimp (about 16 shrimp), peeled and deveined
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/2 lemon, zest grated
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt and the linguine, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, or according to the directions on the package.
Meanwhile, in another large (12-inch), heavy-bottomed pan, melt the butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Be careful, the garlic burns easily! Add the shrimp, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and the pepper and saute until the shrimp have just turned pink, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat, add the parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, lemon slices, and red pepper flakes. Toss to combine.
When the pasta is done, drain the cooked linguine and then put it back in the pot. Immediately add the shrimp and sauce, toss well, and serve.