Shrimp make a simple and delicious meal, especially during the weekdays when time is more limited for cooking and Crunchy Shrimp with Lemon Caper Pasta, will make your meal even better. I prefer jumbo shrimp in this recipe because the surface area is larger to coat with the panko breadcrumbs, which adds an even nicer crunch. The easy lemon caper pan sauce is a cinch to prepare and highlights both the shrimp and quinoa pasta. You can use any type of pasta in this recipe, but the quinoa is a nice change texturally and it is gluten-free.
This recipe can be doubled for larger families and served hot, room temperature or cold for buffet style gatherings. I like to serve mine straight from the pan with a little rustic bread to sop up the leftover pan juices.
1/2 pound jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
1/2 pound quinoa pasta
1 cup panko breadcrumbs, you can buy gluten-free
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 egg whites
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup capers, drained and washed
1/2 cup white wine or vegetable stock
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
fresh basil, optional
1. Boil the pasta according to package instructions and set aside. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water in a measuring cup for later.
2. Remove the shrimp from package, rinse and set aside.
3. Beat the egg whites gently in a bowl and place the panko breadcrumbs in another bowl and season with onion powder, paprika, salt and pepper.
4. Dip each shrimp into the egg whites and then the panko breadcrumbs.
5. Then, add 1/4 cup olive oil to a large saute pan over medium heat. Allow a couple of minutes for the oil to heat, before adding the shrimp to the pan. Sear the shrimp for 2 minutes on each side.
6. Remove the shrimp from the pan and in the same pan add 3 tablespoons butter, white wine and juice of half a lemon and continue to cook over medium heat.
7. Let the sauce cook for 1 minute and add the capers and red pepper flakes. Stir the mixture together and let the sauce cook for 2 more minutes.
8. Add the pasta to the sauce and toss together with tongs to coat the pasta.
9. Now, add the shrimp to the top of the pasta in the pan and add 1/2 cup pasta water. Continue cooking the pasta for 2 minutes until the sauce reduces slightly and the shrimp rewarm.
10. Serve the pasta with 4-5 shrimp per plate and top with fresh basil. Enjoy!