This recipe combines beans with shrimp, instead of pasta. Our dear friends Sue and Jeff made this for us while we were visiting in Connecticut, and we had to share it with you. The flavor is great, it makes a beautiful presentation, and it is so quick and easy to make. You can use serrano chilies, jalapeño chilis or chili flakes, depending on what kind of heat you like. We tried different combinations of chilies and enjoyed them all. It is so quick to put together that you need to make sure you prep everything ahead of time. Once you start to cook, it goes really fast!
I used frozen shrimp that I keep on hand in the freezer. The original recipe called for just fresh basil, which I changed by adding basil and spinach. Although we are basil lovers, it was even better with the spinach, and the additional greens enhanced the presentation!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
3 cans Cannellini white beans, drained
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
16 large shrimp, fresh or frozen, peeled (tail left on), and deveined (21-25 per pound, I used the whole bag)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
4 small serrano chilies, thinly sliced or 2 jalapeño chilies, diced or ½ teaspoon of chili flakes
2 14.5 ounce cans diced tomatoes, drained
2 cups whole basil leaves, packed OR
1 cup of basil leaves, packed and 4 cups of fresh baby spinach, packed
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoons Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped for garnish
Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- Drain the beans over a bowl and reserve the liquid.
- In a large skillet, put the white beans in with just enough water or liquid from the beans to moisten them. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and bring the beans to a low simmer, keeping them warm while you prepare the shrimp.
- In a large skillet, over high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the shrimp and season with salt and cook for about 1-2 minutes, tossing frequently. This is quick, cook only until they turn slightly pink.
- Remove the shrimp with tongs to a bowl, and set aside.
- Add the garlic to the skillet and sauté until the garlic browns. Add the serrano chilies or jalapeños or chili flakes, your choice, and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the tomato, basil and spinach and stir briefly, then add the lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 1 minute and then stir in the shrimp. Toss well and cook briefly to reheat the shrimp.
- In a serving bowl, add the beans first, then put the shrimp mixture on top.
Serving: Garnish with fresh parsley and enjoy!