Some of my fellow Catholic peeps have been knocking down my door for Friday night meatless recipes for this whole Lent thang.
It’s safe to say that I’m a pretty awful Catholic, although Peggy on “Mad Men” could probably be considered way worse than moi with the whole baby-out-of-wedlock/failure to acknowledge said baby/and choosing to not to tell the baby daddy about the baby until the baby is long gone in an adoptive home. Or, does her sister have the baby? I’m still not sure.
Anywho, Peggy totally has some major sin going on underneath her belt. Literally.
But, she does go to church.
Unlike me. Except, I will be going quite a bit this spring what with First Holy Communion coming up for my gorgeous niece Sophia and a Baptism for my other insanely beautiful niece Baby Lucia. And, my spring piano recital is held in a church. Does that count for anything?
As part of my quasi-Catholic existence, I do get on the bandwagon with Lent. I give up things: This year, for the second year in a row, shopping is my sacrifice. We’re in week 2 of Lent, and my head is about to explode, but my eye is on the prize: The Jersey Girl’s birfday is two days after Easter, and I’m sending some shoutouts to Jesus for some gift cards, preferable to J. Crew, Banana Republic, DSW, Macy’s. I’ll just keep the list short. And then, once this Lent situation comes and goes, I can make up for lost time. Or, I’m cleansing myself of the useless desire to buy mass quantities of things. Yeah. That’s it.
In addition, I do follow the no-meat-rule on Fridays. Maybe I think this act will save me from something. I don’t know.
So, in the spirit of Lent, I bring you: Garlic Shrimp Bruschetta. This can totally be served as an appie, but The Husband and I just ate it for the main sha-bang on Friday. Plus, I made Roasted Red Pepper Soup to go with it.
But, I have to say, if I was hosting some sort fabulous dinner party on a Friday during Lent, this could quite possibly show up on the menu as a starter.
The idea came from The Husband, who asked if could conjure up a Shrimp Bruschetta. He said that was all he wanted for din.
After the shock subsided, I got crackin’ on how I was going to do it.
First of all, you gots to peel the shrimp – tail and all. This task is not much fun. I used many other non-Catholic words to describe the job at hand while my hands were all freezing and shrimpy and slimy and up in some crustaceans. But, I try to keep my blog PG regarding the Jersey Girl lingo.
So, once your shrimp are all cleaned up and good to go, the cooking process is pretty fast. Have all your ingredients by your side. And use a super big pan.
You can make the toast portion of the recipe first. If you make it at the same time, keep a hawk eye on your broiler. It’s way easy to burn things up in there.
Garlic Shrimp Bruschetta
2 pounds large shrimp, deveined, peeled, tails removed and cleaned
8 fat cloves of garlic, sliced
½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp. olive oil
½ cup dry white wine
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon
½ cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste.
In a large pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic cloves and red pepper flakes. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes. Garlic should be golden and fragrant. Add shrimp. Season with salt and pepper. Toss shrimp in garlic-oil mixture. Cook for about 5 minutes. Shrimp should turn a pink color.
Add wine. Bring to simmer. Let reduce for a couple minutes. Add lemon zest, lemon juice and parsley. Stir. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve shrimp warm over toasts. Ladle the broth/sauce over the shrimp-topped toasts.
(The sauce is to die-for. You should eat the bruschetta with a fork and a knife.)
Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Favorite crusty Italian bread, sliced thin
1 garlic clove
Rub each side of the bread with a garlic clove. Place bread on a baking sheet.
Pre-heat broiler to high.
When broiler is heated, place baking sheet with bread under the broiler. Once browned, flip bread and brown the other side.