Monday, March 28, 2016

Pignoli Parmesan Couscous with Lemony Broccolini and Sundried Tomato Roasted Shrimp

Pignoli Parmesan Couscous with Lemony Broccolini and Sundried Tomato Roasted Shrimp

Holiday weekends tend to allow us to over eat, over drink and overdo in every sense of the word.  Having hosted Easter full of lamb, ham, cauliflower gratin, and all sorts of Italian goodies (think ricotta cheesecake and cookie cake truffles) I woke up today feeling sluggish and desperately in need of an easy dinner that required very few items and very little clean up.  Pantry staples allow you to jazz up boxed things like whole grain couscous (pignoli nuts can easily be substituted with almonds or walnuts).  And clean up short cuts like lining baking sheets with aluminum foil make dinners like this a dream!


2/3 cup couscous (I used near east plain couscous)

2/3 cup water or broth (Couscous uses a 1-1 ratio, and this particular one cooks in 5 minutes!)

1 tbsp. butter or olive oil

2 tbsp. toasted pignoli nuts (simply put the pignoli nuts in a dry nonstick frying pan and shake them around until they begin to toast, remove from the pan and set aside)

2 tbsp. parmesan cheese

¾ lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined (I keep a bag of large, peeled and deveined shrimp in my freezer)

3 cloves garlic, diced

1 small shallot, diced

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1 tbsp. olive oil or coconut oil for cooking

½ lemon, juiced (zest It first and reserve the zest for the broccolini)

2 tbsp. dry, sundried tomatoes or 3 large sundried tomatoes under oil, roughly chopped


Salt and Pepper

1 bunch broccolini, trimmed

1 tbsp. olive oil

½ lemon, zested

1 tsp. crushed red pepper (optional)

Salt and pepper


Pre heat oven to 400 degrees and line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil, this will make clean up easier!

In a small bowl drizzle olive oil over the shrimp, and the juice of half of a lemon in addition to the Italian seasoning, paprika, salt and pepper.  Stir and let marinade while you prep the rest of the food.

Place the broccolini on the lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, lemon zest, crushed red pepper and salt and pepper and place in the oven.  Let cook for about 10 minutes, toss and place back in the oven until the shrimp are cooked.

In a small pot bring 2/3 cup of water to a boil, add 2/3 cup couscous and olive oil or butter, stir, put the lid on, and let stand off the heat for 5 minutes.  Add the pine nuts and the parmesan cheese and stir, set aside.

In a sauté pan place the olive oil, garlic and shallots and let cook until the shallots begin to turn translucent.  Over a medium high flame add the shrimp to the pan with the juice from the bowl and sauté until they begin to turn pink.  Add the sundried tomatoes and finish cooking, you will know as the shrimp will be curled and they will be opaque and pink.

Remove the broccolini from the pan.  Serve a scoop of the couscous with the broccolini on top and finish with the shrimp and the sauce from the pan. 

I love using baking sheets lined with foil to roast vegetables because that is one less pan that needs to be washed! I have also done this recipe by cooking the broccolini half way through and adding the shrimp and the remainder of the ingredients to the pan and mixing them together and letting them roast until the shrimp are opaque, then you simply have a cutting board, bowl, and pan for the couscous to clean up!

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