Paprika Grilled Shrimp with Olive Oil Poached Baby Purple Potatoes, Pickled Onions & Italian Style Salsa Verde. That’s quite a mouthful for a small plate. And if that’s not enough for you to digest I have an interesting wine pairing too. Terrebrune Bandol Rosé 2009.
This is the fourth recipe and wine pairing from this weeklong series of small plates. So I am going to be brief. Because there are a lot of ingredients and instructions for this dish. But don’t let that intimidate you. It is essentially a salad. I know you can make a salad. Even a salad with a long complicated name…
That’s because you can marinate the Shrimp, make the Salsa Verde, Poached Potatoes, and Pickled Onions way ahead and then simply grill the Shrimp, toss the Arugula in Lemon and Olive Oil and assemble the salad as you serve it.
I do want to say something about the potatoes because they are special. They are from Tasteful Selections and are called Purple Passion. Now I don’t usually buy “branded” produce. The good stuff shouldn’t need a marketing department. But despite the overly cute name, I found that a bag of them ended up in my hot little hands. I needed potatoes, my Farmers Market was a week off, so I thought, “is one plastic bag of produce gonna kill me?” But guess what? They were a joy to cook with and to eat. Slightly sweet, yet nutty with a plump texture and firm skin, they were all very uniform in size making them ideal for my poaching method too. But what makes these potatoes so special in my mind is their ability to hold their purple color. Have you ever noticed how purple potatoes sometimes end up looking like any other potato once cooked? These babies held their dark hue and really were an asset to the taste, texture and visual success of this luxurious little plateful.
serves 4 CLICK here for a printable recipe
- 1⁄4 c white wine vinegar
- 2 slices rustic white bread, crust removed
- 6 cornichons, roughly chopped
- 2 t capers, rinsed and drained
- 3 anchovy fillets
- 1 c flat leaf parsley, leaves only, roughly chopped
- 1 hard boiled egg, roughly chopped
- 3 c (approx) olive oil, divided, plus more as needed for poaching potatoes
- 1⁄4 c smoked Spanish paprika (pimenton de la vera)
- 20 baby purple potatoes, halved and unpeeled
- 1 t fresh thyme leaves
- 2 clv garlic, peeled & minced
- salt and pepper, to taste as needed
- 1 red onion, very thinly sliced into rounds
- 3 T good quality red wine vinegar
- 8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails left intact
- 1 T fresh lemon juice
- 2 c arugula, washed and spun dry,
Make the salsa verde: In a small bowl, pour the vinegar over the bread, tossing to completely wet the bread. Set aside.
In a food processor, combine the cornichons, capers, and anchovies, pulsing until finely chopped, but not pureed. Add the soaked bread and pulse 3 or 4 times. Add the parsley and hard boiled egg, pulsing an additional 2 or 3 times. Scrape down the sides of the processor, then with the machine running, gradually drizzle in about 1 cup of the olive oil through the feed tube. Turn off the machine and taste the sauce. It should be spreadable but not too thick. Add additional oil to adjust consistency.
Make the paprika oil: Using a blender, mix the paprika and 1 1/2 cups olive oil until completely smooth. Pour the mixture into a small saucepan and cook over medium-low heat until bubbles form along the edge of the pan. Do not let the mixture boil or the paprika may scorch.
Remove the oil from the heat, allowing the flavors to meld, about 5 minutes. Strain the oil through a paper coffee filter while still warm. The oil strains more quickly when warm. Discard solids.
Store the strained oil in an airtight jar, up to one month.
Prep the shrimp: Use 1/2 cup of the paprika oil to marinate the shrimp in the refrigerator at least one hour and up to 24 hours.
Poach the potatoes: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Arrange the potatoes in a pie plate that is large enough to just hold them in a single layer. Season generously with salt and pepper. Pour on enough plain olive oil to reach one third up the sides of the potatoes. Scatter the thyme and garlic on top. Poach in the oven, uncovered until the potatoes are tender. About 25 minutes. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool completely in the oil.
Pickle the onions: In a medium bowl, toss the onion slices with the vinegar and a pinch of salt. Let stand for 15 minutes to one hour. Drain the onions before serving.
Grill the shrimp: Set a grill pan over medium-high heat until nearly smoking. Grill the shrimp on both sides until barely cooked through. Time varies according to size, but shrimp is done when the outside completely changes color. Set aside, lightly covered with foil.
To plate: Whisk together 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice. Add arugula. Toss until lightly coated. Strain potatoes and place in the center of a large serving platter. Top with the dressed arugula, laying the shrimp on top. Scatter the pickled red onion over the plate and dollop the salsa verde all around. Serve with additional salsa verde passed at the table.
SERIOUS FUN FOOD