Friday 26 August 2016

Grilled shrimps wrapped in Speck with potato cream and toasted pistachios

15 minutes to prepare Serves 4



Who ever first thought of wrapping something in ham is a genius.

Well, truth is it is rather difficult not to have people raving if you use ham or bacon in your recipes. Still, making the fat contained in ham to naturally penetrate the wrapped food, so that its taste mix with the inner superlicious!

The trick to doing this right is finding the right ham. You want it to get crisp without having to cook the shrimp to death.
Today we chose some Speck ham, an Italian cured, smoked meat native to the Alto Adige, a region that straddles Northern Italy and Southern Austria. Speck is much lighter in flavor than the heavily smoked hams found north of the Alps, but more robust than the delicate, Mediterranean-influenced prosciutto made in San Daniele, Parma, and points south.

I found that making a sauce for these was entirely unnecessary. I decided to accompany it with a soft cream of potatoes, following the suggestion of this Cucchiaio's recipe.

Here are ingredients for the 4-serving recipe:


400 g pasta
1 kg potatoes
400 g shrimps
200 g Speck ham
30 g pistachios
EVO oil
balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

  1. Pour 1 l of water in a large pot and bring to boil. Meanwhile, wash and brush well the potatoes. As soon as the water boils, dip unpeeled potatoes in the pot, and go on with the cooking for about 20 minutes
  2. Meanwhile toast pistachios in a hot pan for 5 minutes. Then, place them in a blender and blend them coarsely, Keep aside
  3. Clean the shrimps and wrap them in Speck ham
  4. Drain potatoes. As soon as potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel them and cut them into small pieces, then place them in a blender
  5. Add 4 tablespoons of EVO oil, a pinch of salt, freshly ground pepper and water until you obtain the desired consistency. Blend until smooth and creamy
  6. Heat a pan and, when it is hot, braise shrimps on it. It will take a couple of minutes for each side
  7. Arrange your serving plates: one ladle of potato cream, with Speck -wrapped shrimps on top. Sprinkle with toasted pistachios and finally pour few drops of balsamic vinegar...buon appetito!

Nutrition Facts are listed for this recipe in the table below. Data is provided per serving.

Holmittog - from halb mittag (in German, half morning) - More similar to a brunch than to a breakfast, it was used to be hold at 10-10,30 with cheese, speck, radishes, mackerel, eggs and wine, coming directly from the kitchen of the maso. Alternatively, it was brought to the fields when you collected apples or harvested.
(Idiom from Bolzano dialect)

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