Do you think I cook too many things with faces? I suppose it is a fair question, but I am eating more fish and seafood, and it sort of comes with the territory. The fact that the Sharp Superheated Steam Countertop Oven really excels at fish keeps me coming back!
It’s not like I am trying. In fact, the Mediterranean Grilled Calamari recipe had all the little faces removed before serving – so that was good. The Branzino recipe was a little in-your-face (pardon the pun) but whole fish is a grown-up menu item that everyone should try at least once… even if you cover the face up with a napkin. Or parsley.
If it helps at all, my next seafood recipe will be soft shell crabs, and all their little faces were cut off before I even bought them. I’m not sure who I am trying to convince, you or me.
Bottom line. Shrimp have faces. Here is one of them.
I’m glad we cleared that up.
The one benefit that I really want to emphasize here is how quick and easy it is to prepare and cook fish in the Superheated Steam Countertop Oven. Salt, Pepper, a spritz of olive oil and you’re done. Minimal effort. Maximum impact.
This was all improvisation. I didn’t know what I would find at the market, but I always ask the fishmonger what he is taking home for dinner and go from there. The swordfish was his first choice and super fresh, but the portions were uneven in weight and thickness. He also recommended the giant prawns because they were so fresh and so beautiful. I couldn’t miss the opportunity! But now what do I do?
Instead of serving two, very mismatched steak portions, I cubed them. A light toss with salt, pepper and olive oil was all that I needed. Add a couple of skewers, and you’re done.
The giant prawns are even easier. There is no point in seasoning the shell that I’m not going to eat. I want them to cook at the same time as the swordfish, so matching the size and shape of the swordfish skewers is important. First, I used my kitchen scissors to trim away the antennae and all of the little legs that seemed unnecessary. This cleans up the appearance of the prawn and removes the little bits that are likely to burn. I also rinse shrimp in the shell under running water. Adding the skewer is really just to keep the prawn straight while cooking so they cook at the same time as the swordfish. Insert the skewer just above the top of the tail fin, and guide it all the way up. You will feel it stop when it reaches the pointy part of the head.
I set the skewers up on my favorite tray liners and some parchment. I am not sure how long it will take to cook, but I know that everything will be done when the shrimp shell turns red. So I set the oven to 485oF for 25 minutes – but I know that I will check at 10 min, and go from there.
Everything cooked up nicely in 18 minutes. The prawn was red, the swordfish was opaque and white, things were looking good. I considered getting more color on the swordfish by removing the prawns and cooking for another 8 minutes, but I am so glad that I didn’t. The fish was tender, flavorful and very juicy. The shrimp were perfect and delicate. Jumbo prawns of this size feel a little more like a small lobster tail than an oxymoronic, “huge shrimp.” The meat is a little richer and the shrimp flavor is more full-bodied. Cooking shrimp in the shell usually adds um-ami, but these giant prawns are still a little bolder than your standard peel-and-eat shrimp.
White wine is important. Chablis or Pinot Grigio are classics, but a firm Rose will work as well.
Jumbo Prawns and Swordfish Kebabs
A fast but extraordinary weeknight dinner for two!
- 2 Steaks Swordfish (Bloodline removed and skin trimmed away.)
- 2 Whole Jumbo Prawns (Rinsed. Antennae and legs trimmed.)
- Salt & Pepper (To taste.)
- 2 tbsp Olive oil (enough to coat.)
Trim the skin and bloodline from the swordfish and cut into cubes. Toss in olive oil, salt, and pepper to coat. Divide onto 4 skewers.
Rinse and trim the prawns. Insert the skewer into the base of the tail above the tail fin. Guide the skewer all the way up the back until it stops at the inside front of the head. Spritz with olive oil.
Arrange on the broiler tray. Aluminum foil, liner tray, and parchment are optional.
Set the oven to BAKE at 485 degrees F and set the timer for 25 minutes. Check in 10 minutes. The prawns should be turning red. Once the prawns are red, and the swordfish is opaque white, remove from the oven and cancel the remaining time.
My total cooking time was 18 minutes. You should always cook your food to your desired doneness. If you would like the swordfish to be medium-well done, remove the shrimp skewers and cook the swordfish for another 5 minutes.