HALLIE EPHRON: It's been so hot here in New England that whenever dinner time rolls around the last thing I want to do is cook, but then when I look at the takeout choices (pizza again? sick of Chinese), I'm driven back to my fridge to see what I can make out of what's on hand.
The other night I came up with a winner. Shrimp (I always have some in the freezer), quick fried with garlic, and served over a bed of shredded zucchini (overflow from Lucy's vegetable garden), topped with grated Parmesan cheese (always on hand) and fresh basil (growing in a pot outside).
I served it with ears of fresh corn.
Garlic shrimp and zucchini à la Hallie
Cooking and prep time: about 30 minutes
10 large frozen shrimp, defrosted, shelled, deveined, and soaked for about 20 minutes in water laced with about a tablespoon of baking soda
1 plump fresh garlic clove, minced
1 medium zucchini, grated (use the largest holes)
1/4 cup (or more) of chopped fresh basil
2 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 T butter
1. Prep the ingredients.
2. Drain, rinse, and dry the shrimp.
3. Heat the oil and butter over medium/high heat in a 10" or 12" heavy skillet until butter stops spitting.
4. Quickly sautee the garlic for about 30 seconds and add the shrimp. Cook, turning until shrimp is cooked through (this is fast - maybe 3 or 4 minutes).
5. Remove the shrimp (but leave most of the garlic in) from the pan and immediately throw in the shredded zucchini - lower the heat a bit and cook, stirring until it's just tender. Just takes a minute or two.
6. Dump the zucchini into a serving dish. Top with shrimp. Top with a good handful of Parmesan cheese. Finally top with basil.
7. Serve with icey Rose wine and crusty French bread.
What are your summer quickie meals.