A quick brine keeps these shrimp moist and flavorful and keeping their shells on protects them as they broil.
Garlicky Roasted Shrimp with Parsley and Anise
SERVES 4 to 6 FAST
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS Roasting quick-cooking shrimp until they developed deep browning seemed like an easy route to a flavorful weeknight Mediterranean recipe. We were surprised, then, when we ended up with pale shrimp without even a hint of flavor. We knew we could do better. Quickly brining the shrimp kept them plump and moist and seasoned them throughout. To further protect them as they cooked, and to produce a more roasted flavor, we left their shells on. For maximum flavor, we tossed the shrimp with a savory mixture of spices and herbs and then broiled them in a single layer on a wire rack. Don’t be tempted to use smaller shrimp with this cooking technique; they will be overseasoned and prone to overcook.
¼ cup salt
2 pounds shell-on jumbo shrimp (16 to 20 per pound)
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon anise seeds
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1. Dissolve salt in 4 cups cold water in large container. Using kitchen shears or sharp paring knife, cut through shell of shrimp and devein but do not remove shell. Using paring knife, continue to cut shrimp ½ inch deep, taking care not to cut in half completely. Submerge shrimp in brine, cover, and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
2. Adjust oven rack 4 inches from broiler element and heat broiler. Combine oil, garlic, anise seeds, pepper flakes, and pepper in large bowl. Remove shrimp from brine and pat dry with paper towels. Add shrimp and parsley to oil mixture and toss well, making sure oil mixture gets into interior of shrimp. Arrange shrimp in single layer on wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet.
3. Broil shrimp until opaque and shells are beginning to brown, 2 to 4 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through broiling. Flip shrimp and continue to broil until second side is opaque and shells are beginning to brown, 2 to 4 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through broiling. Serve with lemon wedges.