May 24, 2016

Chimichurri Marinated Shrimp over Creamy Polenta

Chimichurri Marinated Shrimp over Creamy Polenta

Last summer Holly and I were asked to cater a wedding. We said yes, because we're crazy. Cooking a wedding worthy brunch feast for 100+ people on a 100+ degree day with five kids scrambling about our feet in a high pressure situation, sounds easy enough right? Wrong. While the results were lovely, after I burned an X shaped scar on my wrist from pulling raspberry bars out of the oven, I took it as a sign that catering for weddings just might not be our jam.


...grill them to perfection and you could serve them with just about anything...

Over the course of our partnership, Holly and I have cooked for numerous events, but this one took some stretching of our skills for a few reasons. For starters, it was a morning wedding so we needed to pull out all the stops on our combined brunch knowledge. Secondly, it was stinkin’ hot outside, so scrap whatever we thought we knew about a great brunch menu. This food needed to have a summer casual vibe to it, as opposed to the heavy winter comfort brunches we were more accustomed to (goodbye waffle bar and bacon). Third, the bride was gluten-free and the groom was a meat and potatoes guy. Sure, that's easy (not!). And finally, we were not on a king’s budget, so creativity was key. I'm exhausted just thinking about those brainstorming sessions.

As it goes with any menu planning, Holly and I chewed over our options and went back to the drawing board more than once. When we finally landed on what we felt was a delicious and feasible menu we were most excited about one dish: shrimp marinated in chimichurri and served over a bed of creamy polenta. It's just everything you need in life (minus a lot of stuff, but you get the idea). As it turns out, we weren’t the only ones thrilled about this combination, because once served it was devoured in no time by the approving guests and wedding party. Mission accomplished.

If you aren’t familiar with chimichurri, let me introduce you to my BFF.  A tangy green sauce packed with a variety of fresh herbs, vinegar and garlic, chimichurri makes for a wonderful marinade, topping for meats, or dipping sauce for a good loaf of crusty bread. It's a sauce so good you might cry when it’s gone, so do yourself a favor and make a lot of it.

Take some plump, juicy shrimp and marinate those babies in the aforementioned heavenly concoction, grill them to perfection and you could serve them with just about anything, but I highly recommend resting them on a bed of creamy, rich polenta. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that corn gets a bad rap in the health community, but for the sake of offering comfort food to our gluten-free brothers and sisters out there (and everyone else in the food eating world that appreciates perfection) can we just forget about all of that? Cool.

Now go enjoy this dish. Make it for brunch, lunch, dinner, friends, family, a wedding, a funeral (too far?), it really doesn't matter...just make it and watch it disappear. It's magic really. Delicious magic.

Chimichurri Marinated Shrimp over Creamy Polenta

Serves 2

chimichurri

2 tbsp shallots, finely diced
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh oregano, finely chopped
1 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp grated garlic (or minced)
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar

Ingredients

1 lb jumbo shrimp, uncooked
3/4 cup chimichurri
Creamy Polenta

Method

  1. In a small bowl combine all ingredients except olive oil and vinegar. Slowly add the olive oil while stirring. Right before using add red wine vinegar. Chimichurri is best used day of, but can be stored at room temperature for up to 24 hours.
  2. In a shallow baking dish pour chimichurri over shrimp. Allow to marinate for 2 hours.
  3. Heat grill to medium high. Grill shrimp until it turns pink. About 3 minutes. Turn shrimp and continue to cook for one more minutes.
  4. Serve shrimp over polenta with extra chimichurri on the side. Enjoy!

1. Make

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2. Shoot

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3. Host

Invite your loveliest friends over, enjoy a delicious meal and laugh ...a lot.

4. Post

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Honestly, don't hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. We'd love to help.

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