This dish is inspired by Spanish-style shrimp of the kind you get at tapas bars, swimming in garlic and oil and, if you're lucky, pimenton. I didn't have any pimenton on hand-- and I'm trying not to buy new stuff before leaving for a year-- so I used a combination of Hungarian Paprika and smoked Turkish pepper, to tasty results. Another nice thing is that this is ready in under 30 minutes and can probably be made from ingredients on hand (I always keep some frozen shrimp in the freezer). I brined the shrimp, based on Alton Brown's shrimp brining technique, but I'm not sure it's entirely necessary.
You'll need (serves 2):
12 oz shrimp (the cheaper small ones are fine here), shells removed
1/2 head (10-12 cloves) garlic
1t kosher salt
2 heaping tablespoons Hungarian paprika
1 T smoked Turkish pepper
1/4c olive oil
1/2lb spinach fettucine
for brine (optional):
1/4c kosher salt
Set a large pot of salted water to boil.
Dissolve salt and sugar in 1/2c water over medium heat. Add 2 1/2c cold water and stir until cold. Pour over shrimp and let sit about 10-15 minutes.
Mince garlic with salt; you should have about 3-4T.
When water boils, add pasta. Remove shrimp from brine and dry well.
Heat olive oil in a heavy (preferably cast-iron) skillet. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Add paprika and smoked pepper; stir until well combined. Add shrimp and stir until just cooked, about 3 minutes.
Drain pasta, reserving 1/4c cooking liquid. Toss pasta with shrimp in pan. Add cooking liquid if sauce is too dry. Top with a drizzle of olive oil.
Serve with parmesan cheese and red wine. We drank a Domaine de Fontenille 2003 Cotes du Luberon.