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    Recipe: Here’s an easy way to make spicy, pan-seared shrimp
    • April 4, 2023

    Fancy sauces aren’t needed for this spice-coated shrimp. Each one is a satisfying bite on its own. The chef-testers at America’s Test Kitchen mastered these tasty crustaceans by using steps that ensure that they retain moisture even though they are seared over high heat.

    The searing is interesting, and it works like a charm. The shrimp starts in a cold skillet, and then the heat is turned to high. Once the heat-side of the shrimps are spotty brown and the edges turn pink, the skillet is removed from the heat and the beauties are turned over to finish cooking in the off-the-stove residual heat. A mix of garlic, cumin, paprika and cayenne pepper comes to the party, with a final flourish of cilantro, parsley, lemon juice and pistachios.

    Pan-Seared Shrimp with Pistachios, Cumin, and Parsley

    Yield: 8 servings


    1 1/2 pounds extra-large shrimp (21 to 25 per pound), peeled, deveined, and tails removed

    1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided use

    1 garlic clove, minced

    1 teaspoon ground cumin

    1 teaspoon ground paprika

    1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

    2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided use

    1/8 teaspoon granulated sugar

    1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, leaves and tender stems

    1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, leaves and tender stems

    1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

    1/4 cup shelled pistachios, toasted and coarsely chopped


    1. Toss shrimp and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in a bowl; set aside for 15 to 30 minutes.

    2. Meanwhile, combine garlic, cumin, paprika, cayenne, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a small bowl.

    3. Pat shrimp dry with paper towels. Add 1 tablespoon oil and sugar to bowl with shrimp and toss to coat. Add shrimp to cold 12-inch nonstick skillet in single layer and cook over high heat until undersides of shrimp are spotty brown, and edges turn pink, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove skillet from heat. Working quickly, use tongs to flip each shrimp; let stand until second side is opaque, about 2 minutes. Transfer shrimp to platter.

    4. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to now-empty skillet. Add spice mixture and cook over medium heat until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Off heat, return shrimp to skillet. Add cilantro, parsley, and lemon juice; toss to combine. Transfer to platter; sprinkle with pistachios and serve.

     Source: “The Complete Small Plates Cookbook” by America’s Test Kitchen  (America’s Test Kitchen, $34.99)

    Cooking question? Contact Cathy Thomas at [email protected]

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    ​ Orange County Register