"Grilling is one of the two favorite ways to prepare shrimp in Spain," writes Penelope Casas in Tapas: The Little Dishes of Spain. (The other way is simple boiling, the subject of a future post). What follows is my own recipe for grilled shrimp prepared in a very Spanish way. It's quick, simple, and easy. It makes a great tapa or main course.
If you don't have a grill, don't worry. They're quite good a la plancha--cooked on a hot griddle or in a heavy skillet.
All you need is:
As many shrimp you want, shells removed. (We usually prepare 1/4 to 1/3 a pound per person)
virgin olive oil (enough to coat the shrimp)
garlic (2 or 3 cloves for every pound of shrimp)
coarse kosher salt to taste
black pepper to taste
skewers (if you're cooking the shrimp on the grill).
If you're using wooden skewers, soak them in water ahead of time. Skewer the shrimp. I like to run two skewers through the shrimp because it makes them easier to turn. You'll want to be able to turn the shrimp quickly because over a hot flame they cook in a matter of seconds.
Mince the garlic. Mix it with enough virgin olive oil to coat the shrimp, along with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the oil-garlic mixture over the shrimp and rub it on them until they're well coated.
Now fire up the grill. I like to cook the shrimp very quickly over hot coals--about 1 minute per side. They should just turn pink. Careful! It's easy to overcook shrimp.
These are great with good bread and a simple salad.