Whenever I’ve done a stir fry in the past that focuses on Asian flavors, J has reacted with, “Eh, it’s good, but you know what would be REALLY good? Italian stir fry!”
So, tonight instead of a spicy Asian-influenced shrimp dish, I decided to run with his suggestion. The result? Lets call it Italian Shrimp Stir Fry! (Because I’m awfully creative like that)
Prep and cook: ~30 minutes, plus thaw time for shrimp
What you need:
1 bell pepper (whatever color tickles your fancy – I used orange)
1/2 cup chopped onion
8 oz mushrooms (I used a package of baby portobellos)
8 cloves fresh garlic
12 oz shrimp (I buy it raw and frozen, with tails on)
2 tablespoons oregano
2 tablespoons parsley
2 tablespoons olive oil
2-3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Put 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Chop the onion, bell pepper and mushrooms and get them sauteing in the olive oil. Baby portobellos have a high water content, so as the veggies saute, you’re going to get extra liquid in the pan. Drain the veggies once or twice while cooking to prevent them from getting soggy. Add the oregano and parsley to the veggies.
In a second, smaller pan, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the shrimp (don’t forget to take off the tails!). I cooked the shrimp separately from the veggies (until the very end) to ensure that my shrimp are evenly cooked. However, if you’re confident about keeping an eye on your shrimp, you can keep this a one-pan dish. Peel the 8 cloves of garlic and use a garlic press to crush them directly into the pan of shrimp.
Once the shrimp is fully cooked through (pink, not translucent), transfer the shrimp and garlic into the pan with the vegetables. Add the balsamic vinegar (2 or 3 tablespoons depending on your tolerance for vinegar) and salt and pepper to taste. Mix thoroughly to distribute the vinegar.
The finished product was, I thought, pretty darn good. The meatiness of the mushrooms are a good compliment to the texture of the shrimp, and the balsamic vinegar gives it a little zing. I think I’ll take J’s culinary advice more often. Hope you enjoy it to!