Lemony shrimp and bean stew — a mouthful of sunshine

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Satisfying without being heavy, this is a bright dish for dark times.


Barb H. was a classmate of my younger sister’s at Warrior Run High School in the later Dark Ages. She knows I kid, but Watsontown PA is several lifetimes ago for both of us.

Barb found Sue Li’s creation in the New York Times, and I’m so glad she did. I plan to put it in the permanent recipe rotation of Chez Nous. It’s an easy, healthy supper with a taste like a mouthful of sunshine — bright, in other words — and perfect for isolating at my country house (also my only house).

Li says you may sub flaky white fish or seared scallops for the shrimp and that you can serve over pasta or rice to stretch the 4 skimpy servings to 6. You can use 1 large onion if you don’t have 2 large leeks in your vegetable drawer.

There are, however, no substitutes for fresh lemon zest or juice. Also Lei makes the parsley optional, but I find our beautiful parsley gives a kick in the pants to almost any dish at this time of year.

Lemony shrimp and bean stew

1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest 

1 teaspoon sweet or smoked paprika

2 garlic cloves, smooshed

Salt and pepper

1 pound peeled, deveined large shrimp, patted dry before coating

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick)unsalted butter

2 large leeks, trimmed, then halved lengthwise, white and light green parts sliced

2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

1 15-ounce can cannellini, navy or butter beans, rinsed and drained

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In medium bowl, combine lemon zest, paprika, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Add shrimp and toss to coat.

In large pot, melt butter over medium-high heat. When butter foams, add shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until pink, just a few minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer shrimp to plate; set aside.

Add leeks to pot, season with salt and pepper, and cook over medium until leeks are soft and starting to brown at edges, 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broth and bring to boil over high. Lower heat and simmer, fewer than 10 minutes. Stir in reserved shrimp, any juices from plate, beans, parsley and lemon juice. Taste before seasoning with more salt and pepper.





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