A Midsummer Night’s Dream Menu
August 10th, 2010 by
These shrimp have lots of fresh flavor: perfect for a hot summer night.

These shrimp have lots of fresh flavor: perfect for a hot summer night.

Each meal starts as a dream.

You have a craving for something and then have to imagine what would go well with it. In this way, by learning to daydream at will, we learn to put together a satisfying menu.

On Sunday I craved pasta but wanted something more so decided the pasta dish would be the primi, or first course, at my summer cookout.

Meat usually follows the pasta, but I wanted something lighter having attended a meaty cookout the day before. Plus, the weather in the Boston area has been outrageously humid making lighter fare a natural.

So, would it be chicken? No. I ate enough chicken over the past week.

Pork? No. I never really bought that whole “white meat” thing.

Seafood…..mmm…yes! And so quickly scanning Maria Batali’s Italian Grill cookbook, I found a recipe for Shrimp Rosemary and immediately planned the following menu:


First CourseNeapolitan-Style Macaroni II (From the Artusi)

Second Course: Shrimp Rosemary (recipe below)

Grilled bok choy (Recipe:Toss bok choy in olive oil and salt and cook quickly on hot grill, turning once.)

Third CourseCorn As Italians Would Eat It

RECIPE: Shrimp Rosemary

  • Ingredients/Shopping List
  • Fresh Italian parsley (About 2 cups, leaves only)
  • Fresh basil (About 2 cups, leaves only)
  • Bread Crumbs (2 cups; Mario didn’t specify what kind; I used Panko Japanese bread crumbs)
  • Kosher salt (1/2 tsp.)
  • Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil (1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
  • Large shrimp (2 pounds, peeled and deveined)
  • Rosemary sprigs (12, prepared as skewers and soaked in water for at least 2 hours over overnight. To do this, strip off all the rosemary leaves except for one end. Cut the bald end on the diagonal to make a point. Then soak in water.)
  • Lemons (2, cut into wedges. Served as garnish)

What I did:

In a food processor toss:

–The parsley and basil leaves

–The bread crumbs

–Salt and pepper

–1/4 cup of the olive oil

Zap until the herbs are chopped and the breadcrumbs look green.

Transfer to a pie plate or wide shallow bowl. Add shrimp and toss to coat well.

Skewer 4 or 5 shrimp on each rosemary sprig. Dredge again in breadcrumb mixture. Place on platter and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Cook on a hot grill. You can lay the rosemary sprigs on their side directly on the grill and then turn over once. The shrimp cook fast and are done when pink. Don’t overcook.

Serve shrimp with the lemon wedges.

Find more recipes in the Food section.

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