L.A. restaurateur Stephane Bombet makes a truly luscious version of shrimp à l’Américaine, a classic dish made with tomatoes and wine. His version includes Cognac, crème fraîche and a touch of cayenne, which create a sauce that’s totally irresistible.
Slideshow:More Shrimp Recipes
2 pounds large shrimp (about 40), shelled and deveined
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 shallots, very thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons Cognac
One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 cup crème fraîche
Crusty bread, for serving
How to Make It
Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in the olive oil over moderately high heat. Add half of the shrimp and cook, turning once, until lightly browned but not cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining shrimp.
In the skillet, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. Add the shallots and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and Cognac and simmer until slightly reduced, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste and cayenne and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring, until just cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the crème fraîche; season with salt and pepper. Serve with bread.
If you would like to flambé the Cognac, add it after the shrimp finish cooking in Step 2. Ignite carefully with a long-handled match and cook until the flames subside. Stir in the crème fraîche and serve.
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