When I was in grade school, a friend of mine invited me to stay over for dinner. I said sure and asked what we were having. She replied with shrimp. Oh yum! I loved shrimp. And the whole house smelled wonderful. But when we sat down at the table, her mother poked her head out of the kitchen, smiled at me, and asked “do you want the heads on your shrimp?” Huh? Shrimp don’t have heads, thought ten year old Riley, who knew shrimp only as the already peeled, already deveined, already headless little fish.
I am still not so adventurous as to eat a shrimp while he is looking right at me. No thank you. I’ll take my shrimp sans-head. I prefer to stay ignorant, if that’s alright. I love to toss sautéed shrimp with thin strings of linguine, arugula, and lemon-infused olive oil. The lemon cuts through the richness of the shrimp and the arugula adds a bit of fresh flavor and color for good measure.
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 lemons, zested
- 1 pound linguine
- 2 shallots, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 3 cups baby arugula leaves
- 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Whisk together ¼ cup of olive oil and the lemon zest in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes, until soft and fragrant. Add the shrimp, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes per side, until just cooked through. Add the cooked linguine, lemon juice, arugula, parsley, and reserved lemon oil and toss to combine. Add enough of the reserved cooking liquid to create a sauce for the pasta. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.