This is one of those recipes that I use in my repertoire quite often. It is packed with flavor, extremely quick to prepare, and, most importantly, versatile.
The versatility of this recipe is unparalleled. I like serving this stew in an eggplant boat if you are following keto, but it goes well in a bed of pasta or rice (if you are on a keto cheat day, lol), or a bowl of cauliflower grits, or funche.
To be completely honest, I do not know if there is such a term as 'pan stew,' but if there isn't, there should be. Making quick, thick sauced protein-heavy products such as these make for quick and easy meals that will help you in a bind. A similar recipe posted a year back was my Seafood Pomodoro recipe.
Some ingredients in this particular recipe, like eggplant and the juice of the cooked mussels, might not be available to you if you are not making the eggplant boats or did not reserve the liquid from the cooked mussels. Keep reading, and you will find variations and substitutions for these.
- Rock Shrimp
- Olive oil
- Canned Diced Tomatoes
- Fish or Chicken Stock or Broth (if you saved the liquid of cooked mussels like I would, use that instead)
- White Wine
- Eggplant (if serving it in roasted eggplant boats)
See the recipe card for quantities.
As I stated in the title, this is a quick recipe. Depending on how you bought them, the longest time will be spent on the preparations as shrimp could be time-consuming. I suggest having all ingredients diced, peeled, and opened before beginning cooking so that your cooking time is effortless.
- Warm a saute pan to medium heat. Add olive oil. Once you see the oil ripple as you move the pan, add onions. Saute onions until tender, then add garlic.
- If serving sauce inside an eggplant boat, add the small pieces removed from the boat to the onions and garlic. cook until the eggplant softens and renders some of its water. About 5 minutes.
- Add the diced tomatoes. The tomato's acid will help cook the eggplant faster, deglaze the pan, and lift all the stuck-on flavors.
- Cook until the eggplant has shrunk in size and the tomatoes have thickened.
- Add the shrimp and the scallops. Remember it does not take long to cook. Keep turning the seafood into the sauce with a wooden spoon until you see the shrimps get a darker pink coloring and the scallops thicken and become opaque.
- Add broth or stock and wine if used. Let the sauce simmer for a few minutes. Taste and adjust flavor.
- Scoop sauce into a roasted hollowed eggplant and serve. Top with shredded Parmesan and parsley.
Hint: When cooking seafood in a sauce like this, remember that the sauce will retain some heat and acts like a cooking surface. It is okay to stop the cooking before the seafood is fully cooked and allow the residual heat of the sauce to finish cooking the seafood. In the end, you will end up with tender, juicy seafood and not rubbery pieces of shrimp and scallops.
Just because I like something does not mean that you will too. Sometimes, dietary or socio-cultural restrictions play a big part in how food is prepared. Let me share some substitutions that might help you enjoy this recipe.
- Wine - I like adding wine to many of my recipes because it adds a bitter-sweetness to the food as well as balances acids in vegetables and fruits, in this case, tomato. If you do not want to use Wine, substitute with a tablespoon of lemon juice. The acid of the lemon will cancel the acid of the tomato and leave a balanced flavor.
- Eggplant - Not many people like eggplant. Substitute it with Zucchini or Summer Squash instead.
- Vegetarian - If seafood is not your cup of tea, then skip the seafood altogether and increase the vegetables. Do a medley of eggplant, zucchini, and mushrooms instead.
I mentioned this recipe is versatile, and here are three adaptations to help you either try new things or keep you from falling into a rut.
- Spicy - add chili pepper flakes while cooking to imbue heat into the dish.
- Sundried Tomatoes or Roasted Plum Tomatoes - Sun-dried tomatoes add a touch of tartness to the sauce, while roasted plum tomatoes (especially if roasted on an open fire) will add a hint of char and smokiness.
- Kid-friendly - make the basic tomato sauce and set a small portion aside before adding the seafood. Before serving, consider pureeing the sauce to make it more appealing.
Seafood is a highly allergenic food. Please keep a close eye on your children as you are cooking and serving seafood. Scroll down for more food safety tips
My pan of choice for this recipe is a deep wall saute pan. This pan has a regular long handle, with pan sides about 3-inches deep, and sports a helper handle for when the pan goes into the oven. I do not use this pan enough in my cooking, only because I am partial to cast iron, but with the amount of acid between the tomatoes and the wine, I decided to leave my cast iron alone.
This is a great pan for casseroles and foods that need to go into the oven, mainly because all its parts are stainless steel. A great investment for a small kitchen or a tight budget.
Store the wet ingredients (lettuce, tomato, onion) separately from the dry ingredients (buns) in the fridge, and recombine when ready. Good for 2-3 days.
These ingredients do/don't stand up well to freezing for X days/weeks/months.
Share something you think is key to making this recipe well, such as: Don't overcook the burgers! Sear the outside and cook to a minimum internal temperature, but they should still be juicy for best results.
My food safety is more related to time and temperature than cooking temperatures.
- Always buy your seafood from a reputable source.
- Seafood can be highly allergenic to some, so please store raw seafood in your refrigerator's lowest possible spot.
- Maintain raw seafood at cold temperature, if not cooking that same day. fill a ziptop bag with ice and water and lay it over the seafood to assure it stays cold.
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food that previously touched raw meat.
- Wash hands after touching raw meat.
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods.
- Never leave cooking food unattended.