Creating in The Kitchen


I’m impatiently waiting to recuperate enough to negotiate the stairs to my studio.  I can easily get to the kitchen, so am indulging my creativity by cooking these days.  Tonight my daughter helped me make another wonderful dish from Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking.  My Cooking Italy assignment for the week – which I chose to accept – was Gamberetti all’ Olio e Limone, Poached Shrimp with Olive Oil and Lemon Juice .  What a simple and wonderful dish!

Boil 2 quarts of water with salt, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, a carrot and stalk of celery.  After 10 minutes, add the shrimp, cook briefly, just  a few short minutes.  Peel and devein.  Add a a half cup olive oil, a half cup lemon juice, salt and freshly ground pepper to the still warm shrimp.  Let marinate for an hour and you will have the most wonderful dish for an appetizer or entree.  Does it get any easier?  For the complete recipe, I recommend you buy the book – or check the blog post by our Cooking Italy leader, Angela.


Ideally, the shrimp should be wild, raw and in the shell.  I didn’t have access to such perfect shrimp but I finally did try Trader Joe’s wild, raw shrimp – already peeled, deveined and with tail.  You know what they say about two out of three!  After the shrimp were cooked, my daughter pulled off the tails while I deveined what had been missed by Trader Joe. My daughter made the marinade and we let the shrimp sit at room temperature for an hour.

Then we feasted!  The wild shrimp were noticeably tastier than farmed.  They had flavor!  The simple marinade was perfection – fine olive oil tempered by the acidity of the lemon.  The bread basket kept moving, as everyone wanted to sop up the marinade.  My family gave this recipe an enthusiastic “You can make this anytime!” review.

Oh – I will be using the Trader Joe’s wild shrimp from now on.  The taste is worth the slight price differential.  I also learned I should devein the thawed shrimp before I cook them, to make life easier.

Buon appetito!

8 Responses to Creating in The Kitchen

  1. Maria August 4, 2009 at 11:04 am #

    Thanks Kayte! Edgecomb Potters, up in Maine – it was a lovely birthday gift from my brother and SIL.

  2. Kayte August 4, 2009 at 10:18 am #

    Your shrimp looks absolutely wonderful. I like how you put those lemon slices in there and I love the bowl you served it in! Thanks for the recommendation on the shrimp at TJ’s…I always love to hear what people find that makes their day! Don’t rush yourself…you need time to heal.

  3. Vicki Bensinger August 17, 2009 at 9:54 am #

    Wow Maria I had no idea you had started cooking. These recipes look great and of course Marcella Hazan has some wonderful cookbooks with fabulous recipes.

  4. Vicki Bensinger August 17, 2009 at 10:07 am #

    Maria please check out my blog. I have left you a message on it.

  5. Melissa Clifford August 22, 2009 at 6:54 am #

    Beautiful shrimp! Great dish. I want to make it again.

  6. Maria August 24, 2009 at 12:13 pm #

    Hi, sorry, been busy with getting junior back to college!

    Vicki, you should check out our little group. I have an ancient MH cookbook – almost 30 years old – that is well used, splattered and falling apart. I bought a recent revised edition and am having fun with the Cooking Italy group. Although I don’t know what I’m doing as much as the rest of the group – they are true foodies!

    Melissa, I agree – these were wonderful! I will be making them as soon as Trader Joe has more wild shrimp in stock – they fly off the shelves. I found myself with leftover shrimp/marinade and some leftover fresh pasta – threw them together – what a happy mix!

  7. Lynn Douglass September 16, 2009 at 11:10 am #

    Hi, Maria! I always said that I wanted to start cooking new things once the picky eatin’ boys were grown. I love shrimp, so I’m going to give this recipe a try. I checked out the blog you reference for the Italian cooking, and I’ll check it out more often. Thanks for the nudge!

  8. Maria September 18, 2009 at 2:20 pm #

    Come on in, Lynn, the waters, fine! It’s a lovely group of ladies on Cooking Italy. I’m having fun with it, Angela plans, so I don’t have think about what to make – plus my husband is very appreciative of the wonderful meals we’ve been creating 🙂

    Same with me, picky kids gone – time to get back to interesting cooking!