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Friday, May 6, 2011

Mini Shrimp Cassoulets--Well, almost

Mini Shrimp Cassoulets

Mini Shrimp and White Bean "Cassoulets"
by Victoria Challancin

I adore cassoulet.  Just love it.I could swim to South Western France right now for a proper cassoulet.  Mind you, a proper cassoulet takes days to make.  There is the rendering of the duck fat,  the confit, the sausages, the pork, the chicken, the perfect get the idea.

I first saw these shsrimp cassoulets on the Internet, but can't remember where.  I noted that I cobbed the recipe together from a variety of sources, so if I leave someone out, my sincere apologies.  I can't find a specific recipe which I can claim to have copied, but I certainly didn't come up with this one from scratch.

The idea of a simple cassoulet-like dish appeals to me.  And one with shrimp--well, why not?  It's certainly not remotely authentic, but nevertheless, it is divine.

Mini Shrimp and White Bean "Cassoulets"
by Victoria Challancin

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
Large pinch of red pepper flakes or 1/2 jalapeño or serrano chile, seeded and minced
1 lb medium shrimp, shelled and deveined (tales intact if desired)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley, divided
2 teaspoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons dry white wine
2 1/2 cups cooked white beans
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Grease 8 1-cup ramekins or a 1 1/2 qt baking dish with olive oil.

In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil.  ADd leeks, garlic, red bell pepper, and pepper flakes; cook, stirring frequently, until the leeks soften, but do not brown, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Increase heat to medium-high.  Add shrimp and 3 tablespoons parsley; cook, stirring frequently, until shrimp just begin to turn pink, about 1 minute.  Stir in flour and salt until combined.  Stir in wine and cook 30 second.  Add beans and broth; cook, stirring, until mixture just comes to a simmer.  Transfer mixture to ramekins or baking dish.

In a small blow, combine bread crumbs, remaining tablespoon olive oil, Parmesan cheese, and remaining tablespoon of parsley.  Layer breadcrumb mixture over the top of filled ramekins.   Bake until shrimp mixture is hot and tops are lightly browned, 15 to 18 minutes.  Serve immediately with a green salad and good, crusty bread.


Victoria Challancin
Flavors of the Sun Cooking School
San Miguel de Allende, México

©Victoria Challancin. All Rights Reserved.

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