In 1991, I went through the obligatory phase in which I obsessed about all things “The Little Mermaid.” We’re talking multiple Ariel dolls, swimsuits, tent, bedspread, watch, etc. If collecting Ariel paraphernalia were an Olympic sport, I would have broken records in the second grade. I had the entire movie memorized and would proudly recite it daily in conjunction with the movie, which I watched anywhere from 5-10 times every day. And, yet, I can’t recall one fantasy of devouring Sebastian shumai or grilled Flounder tacos. Odd.
Enter 2010, and suddenly I’m this seafood obsessive who craves Ariel’s friends on the daily. Fo realz. I recently made a roasted shrimp with champagne-shallot sauce that was all kinds of amazeballs.
I found it courtesy of my old standby, Epicurious. Oh, Epi, you’re always there for me when creativity abandons me. You’re like my safety school.
1/2 cup minced shallots
3 1/2 tbsp olive oil
2 3/4 lbs uncooked shrimp, deveined
3 1/2 tsp fresh thyme
2 1/4 tsp grated lemon peel
1/2 cup butter, room temp
2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley
I brought some champy back from Israel, so it was a relief to find some use for it that didn’t involve wearing my high heeled slippers and eating gold. I’m getting sooo sick of my Tuesday night routine.
You start by simmering the champagne and shallots until they reduce to 1/2 cup, which takes 25 minutes. Combine oil, shrimp, 2 1/2 tsp thyme, and lemon peel in a bowl, and toss together with some salt and pepper. Meanwhile I boiled the green beans in some salted water for a few minutes, and those were good to go.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees, and arrange shrimp on baking sheets. Roast for about 6 minutes, or until opaque. Meanwhile, bring sauce to simmer, remove from heat, and whisk in butter along with 1 tsp thyme, and 1/2 tsp lemon peel. Add salt to taste, and voila. Make a bed of green beans, put shrimp on top, spoon sauce on top, and garnish with parsley. Delicioso.
I’ve also been having a not-so-covert affair with bivalves, and so I decided to bake some recently.
16 littleneck clams
1 bunch Italian parsley
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 cup panko bread crumbs
2 cloves garlic
1 shallot, minced
a few drops of hot sauce
I had just returned from a weekend of gluttony in the central Fla., and I was craving something non-muffin top inducing, if at all possible. I researched and found solely sub-par baked clam recipes, and so I was left to my own devices. I started by steaming the clams in a tight fitting pot over moderately high heat for 5-7 minutes. They eventually bloomed, if you will, and looked as they do above. Check.
I mixed together breadcrumbs, about 2 tbsp Parmesan, garlic, shallot, salt, pepper and hot sauce in a large bowl. I then shucked the clams, and added those into the mix as well. I threw away half of each shell, and used the other half as a bed for my clam mix. I divided the mix among the shells, topped with more cheese, and put under the broiler for about 3-4 minutes. They were so tasty and easy to prepare, and I only had to pair with a small salad to be full. Loves it.
As far as the sweatiness goes, I’ve been logging hours with my good friend, Gym. I try to mix it up with the variety of machines, but it comes as no surprise that I’m nearing yet another rut. It’s quite a bit of time spent with Gym for minimal results, and I realize that it’s less about the time spent and more about how one tricks one’s body. It’s damn near impossible to do weird exercises in my cramped room or in a gym full of spectators, though. I’ve been going back and forth trying to decide whether to get a trainer or try crossfit, and I’m treating this week as my sampler. A revamping is straight ahead, and I, for one, am thrilled. Stay tuned, and see below for my clams: