One of the many things that make me feel like I’ve passed into a new age bracket is the magazine Real Simple. I am now a subscriber. How can that be? It doesn’t seem like that long ago that I was fighting with my mom in CVS about whether I was old enough to read YM. And it feels like just yesterday that I was living with my roommates, editorial assistants at Elle and Cosmopolitan, and pouring over the fashion magazines that literally threatened to take over our apartment.
But here I am: I dedicated subscriber to Real Simple, and a reader of articles like “Spring Clean Your Life” and “Teach Your Kids to Tidy Up! 25 Secrets to Success.”
I don’t mean to sound like I’m complaining, or making fun of the magazine. On the contrary, I actually really love it—especially the recipes. They always give me lots of inspiration, and they are great for working parents because they are, well, really simple.
Sometimes I think they are even too simple. This recipe, for easy baked shrimp, is one that I’ve adapted over time from the magazine. In its original form, there is no thyme, no lemon zest, no subtle kick of red pepper. It’s still delicious, but I think my tweaks really take it over the top and make it a truly memorable weeknight meal.
I really can’t stress enough the ease and impressiveness of this dish. First, you make a quick crumb topping with butter, panko, and fresh herbs. Then you toss shrimp with garlic and wine, scatter the crumbs over the top, and pop it in the oven for 15 minutes. I like to prepare and serve it straight from my favorite cast iron skillet. All you need is a big green salad and a baguette—don’t forget the baguette!—for soaking up all that garlicky butter and wine.
This recipe technically serves four, but Alex and I have been known to devour the entire thing by ourselves. And then we pass out at 9:30pm watching HGTV, because that’s how we roll now.
- 1/3 cup panko (preferably whole wheat)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme (or 1/4 teaspoon dried)
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons white wine
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Lemon wedges, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- In a small bowl, combine the panko, butter, parsley, thyme, lemon zest, and pepper flakes. With clean fingers, gently work the mixture together until it is well combined and forms coarse crumbles.
- Put the shrimp in a large skillet or medium baking dish (don't worry if they overlap a bit). Add the garlic and wine, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Sprinkle the panko mixture over the top. Transfer to the oven and bake until the shrimp are bright pink and the panko mixture is toasted and golden-brown, about 15 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges.