Grilled Seafood Kebabs and Orecchiette with Arugula

Jeff Smith rarely cooks a dish the same way twice, a habit he learned from his mother. "I used to ask her, 'How long do you cook this?' And she always answered, 'Until it's done.' She taught me to trust my palate and my instincts." Smith first cooked these quick kebabs during a trip to Nantucket, Massachusetts. The dish (and its various incarnations) became a favorite of his wife's, "but she gets frustrated because I never write the recipe down." More Grilled Seafood Recipes

Grilled Seafood Kebabs and Orecchiette with Arugula
Photo: © Marcus Nilsson
Total Time:
45 mins


  • 8 jumbo scallops, about 2 ounces each, halved

  • 16 large shrimp, shelled and deveined (about 1 pound)

  • 16 cherry tomatoes

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

  • 2 cups orecchiette (6 ounces)

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 shallot, minced

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth

  • 4 cups packed baby arugula (4 ounces)

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Preheat a grill pan. Using 8 pairs of wooden skewers, double-skewer the scallops, shrimp and cherry tomatoes. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  2. Cook the pasta in the boiling water until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.

  3. Grill the kebabs over high heat until browned and cooked through, turning once, about 7 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt the butter in the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the shallot and garlic and cook over high heat, stirring constantly, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the pasta, arugula, lemon juice and cheese to the skillet and season with salt and pepper. Toss until the arugula is slightly wilted, adding a few tablespoons of the reserved pasta water if necessary. Serve immediately with the seafood kebabs.

Suggested Pairing

Smith partners with winemaker Rob Lawson of Pavi to make a Pinot Grigio—Tu Tu—that offers an ideal accompaniment for this grilled seafood. If you can't find Tu Tu, try Lawson's own Pavi Napa Valley Pinot Grigio.

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