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Fish and Shellfish, Mains, Quick and Easy

Shrimp pil pil with merken

Shrimp pil pil with merken
Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

Much like the metal that comes from deep within Chile's mines, the national spice also has a copper hue. Within the last few years, merken, made from ground smoked chiles, has moved from being solely a local curiosity to a ... Read more

Total time: 25 minutes | Serves 4
  • 13 ounces cleaned shrimp, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons white wine
  • 2 teaspoons merken, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold butter, cut into 1/2 -inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped green onions (from 2 to 3 whole onions)
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro, or to taste

Step 1In a medium bowl, toss the shrimp with one-fourth teaspoon salt and one-eighth teaspoon pepper, or to taste.

Step 2Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and garlic, and cook until the shrimp are just firm and opaque. Stir in the lemon juice, white wine and merken, scraping any flavoring from the bottom of the pan. Season with another one-fourth teaspoon salt, or to taste. Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook to marry the flavors and reduce the sauce, about 5 minutes.

Step 3Whisk in the butter to form a smooth sauce, then whisk in the green onions and cilantro. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Note: Merken can be found at select cooking stores and gourmet markets, as well as online.

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