Dish of the Week: Seafood Fra Diavolo
From classic comfort foods to regional standouts and desserts, we'll be sharing a new recipe with you each week. Find other dishes of the week here.
This week, we're covering seafood fra diavolo.
Italian for "brother devil," fra diavolo sauce is a hot-pepper-loaded, tomato-based sauce that is commonly used to coat seafood and pasta. Though the fiery seafood dish may seem to be Italian in origin, it is much heavier than the kind of fare served in Italy. Instead, it likely originated in Italian-American restaurants in New York in the mid 1900s.
Whoever created it, we're glad they did. The zesty, chile-and-garlic-studded red sauce is often served over linguine or spaghetti with lobster, shrimp, scallops, squid, mussels, clams or all of the above.
To make things simpler, this recipe -- from Lidia Bastianich -- uses just shrimp in addition to capers and red pepper flakes, but the briny, spicy and rich effect is the same. Feel free to add in as many types of seafood as you please.
Shrimp Fra Diavolo
Ingredients 6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 6 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled 1½ lbs extra-large or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined 4 sprigs fresh thyme 1½ tsp kosher salt 2 cups diced inner celery stalks and leaves 1/4 tsp peperoncino (crushed red pepper) 1 (28-ounce) can Italian plum tomatoes, preferable San Marzano, crushed by hand 1/4 cup tiny capers in brine, drained 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley For serving: 1 lb linguine, spaghetti, or bucatini
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add 1/4 cup of the olive oil and the garlic. Once garlic begins to sizzle, add half of the shrimp and the thyme sprigs. Season shrimp with 1/2 teaspoon salt and toss just until the shrimp are seared (but not cooked all the way through), just a minute or two. Remove shrimp to a plate with tongs and repeat with remaining shrimp and another 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Once all of the shrimp has been seared and removed, add celery to skillet and cook until wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add peperoncino, let toast for a minute, then pour in the tomatoes and slosh out the can with 1 cup hot water. Season with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring sauce to a simmer and cook until celery is tender and sauce is thickened, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente.
Stir capers into the sauce, return to a boil and add shrimp back. Simmer until shrimp are just cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in parsley and drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.
Serve immediately over pasta.
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