Aaron Kirk
Active Time
30 MIN
Total Time
35 MIN
Yield
Serves : 4

Crispy, bubbly, cheesy, hearty—this classic shrimp parm checks all the Italian-American comfort-food boxes. If you grew up showering your plate with a snowfall of canned Parmesan cheese, we get you—nostalgia is a judgement-free zone. We get you back there in a gourmet way by pulsing the good stuff—aged Parmigiano-Reggiano—in the food processor until it yields drifts of savory, cheesy rubble. Mixed into the shrimp breading and blanketing the finished dish, it provides a major flavor upgrade. If you’d like a shortcut, you can use store-bought marinara (we love Rao’s). But trust us—our Best-Ever Marinara comes together in just over half an hour, and its perfectly balanced flavor will transform any recipe you add it to, from pizza to lasagna. It freezes beautifully, too.

How to Make It

Step 1    

Whisk together eggs and milk in a medium bowl. Stir together panko, 3/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt in a shallow dish. Set aside.

Step 2    

Pour oil into a large Dutch oven to a depth of 2 inches; heat over medium to 375°F. Butterfly shrimp by making a deep slit down back of each from head end to tail, cutting to but not through inside curve of shrimp. Devein shrimp. Dredge shrimp in panko mixture, shaking off excess. Dip in egg mixture, and dredge again in panko mixture, pressing to adhere.

Step 3    

Fry half of coated shrimp in hot oil until golden and crisp, about 1 minute and 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer fried shrimp to a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Repeat with remaining shrimp, returning oil temperature to 375°F over medium-high before adding the second batch. Sprinkle fried shrimp evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Step 4    

Preheat broiler to high with oven rack 6 inches from heat. Divide marinara among 4 shallow, broiler-safe, 8-ounce gratin dishes. Top evenly with fried shrimp and mozzarella. Place on a rimmed baking sheet, and broil until cheese is melted, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano. Top evenly with basil, and serve with garlic bread.

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