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Sunday, July 21, 2024 at 1:20 PM

What’s Cooking in Kelli’s Kitchen - Summer Shrimp Scampi with Tomatoes and Corn

What’s Cooking in Kelli’s Kitchen - Summer Shrimp Scampi with Tomatoes and Corn
Photo by David Malosh for The New York Times. Food Stylist: Simon Andrews.

The first week of 95+ degree temperatures is in the books, and my culinary endeavors have shifted towards cooling foods that require minimal cooking. All it takes is a glance out my office window at the bees buzzing around the 4-foot-tall pink hollyhocks to know that summer is upon us. And, while summer’s bounty is still a ways off for northern Nevada farmers, I am already anticipating my first taste of a dirt-grown, sun-ripened tomato.

This week in Kelli’s Kitchen, we enjoyed a test round of summer scampi. I say “test round” because this dish will only truly reach peak quality when its core ingredients—tomatoes and corn—are available at the farmer's market and not just the grocery store's produce section. But I needed something tasty and quick to make for dinner last night, and the New York Times Cooking section inspired me.

Summer Shrimp Scampi with Tomatoes and Corn - by Ali Slagle

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined

Kosher salt and black pepper

2 T extra virgin olive oil

1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes

2 c fresh or frozen corn kernels (4 ears)

5 cloves garlic, sliced

½ t red pepper flakes

¼ c dry white wine

1 lemon, juiced + wedges for serving

5 T unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces

Torn basil leaves for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Pat the shrimp dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook until pink and lightly golden in spots, 1-2 minutes per side. Transfer the shrimp to a plate.
  2. Add the tomatoes to the skillet, season with salt and pepper, cook, stirring just once or twice, until they start to blister in spots, 3-4 minutes. Add the corn, season with salt and pepper, cook, stirring just once or twice, until the tomatoes burst and the corn is golden in spots, 3-4 minutes
  3. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, cook, stirring until you smell garlic, about 1 minute.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium, add the wine and lemon juice, scrape any brown bits from the bottom of the pan, and cook until nearly evaporated. Then add the butter and stir until melted. Add the shrimp and its juices and stir until warmed through. If the sauce breaks and looks greasy, add 1-2 teaspoons of water and stir until emulsified.
  5. Remove from heat, add basil, season to taste with salt and pepper, serve with extra lemon for squeezing.

Here’s another recipe that caught my eye for those evenings when standing over a stovetop ranks as the last thing you want to do. The ingredients in this recipe can be flexed to include whatever fresh veggies you have on hand (radishes, cherry tomatoes, salad turnips, etc).

Chopped Salad with Chickpeas and Avocado - by Lidey Heuck

INGREDIENTS:

2 c small diced stale bread, buns, or pita

6 T olive oil, plus more for drizzling

(or pre-made croutons)

Kosher salt and pepper

1 romaine heart, quartered lengthwise and sliced into ½” pieces

1 can chickpeas, rinsed

1 medium English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and diced

½ c pitted Castelvetrano olives, roughly chopped

½ c thinly sliced scallions

2 T red wine vinegar

1 T drained capers, roughly chopped

1 T minced shallots

¼ t Dijon mustard

1 firm-ripe avocado, halved, pitted, and diced

¾ c feta cheese, diced or crumbled

¼ c fresh herbs, chopped (dill, basil, mint, or parsley), plus more for serving

DIRECTIONS:

  1. If you make your own croutons, heat the oven to 350°. Place diced bread on a sheet pan, drizzle lightly with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Toss, then bake for 10-12 minutes, until well toasted. Set aside to cool.
  2. Place the romaine pieces in a large mixing bowl, along with the chickpeas, cucumber, olives, and scallions.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together 6 T olive oil with the vinegar, capers, shallots, mustard, ½ t salt, and ¼ t pepper. Whisk well. Pour enough dressing over the salad to moisten and toss. Add the avocado, feta, and herbs. Toss gently, adding more dressing to taste. Top with the croutons and a generous sprinkle of herbs. Serve.

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