Everyday Inspirations

 
 
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Lately I have had a craving for shrimp scampi. It's such a light, fresh, irresistible dish. There were a few nights last week where I made quick pasta dinners with ingredients I had hanging around the house. The pasta was good, but both nights I had wished for shrimp to add to it. It's such an easy way to transform a meal from "good" to "amazing".

This craving for shrimp scampi can be traced back couple months ago to when Dan and I went to the grocery store to find dinner. It was a Sunday and neither of us felt like cooking, so we were wandering the aisles looking for inspiration. In the frozen food section we found those complete Italian meals and decided to just get one and call it a day. However, something in me snapped when I saw the pasta with shrimp.

"We could make that," I said. "We could make shrimp scampi. It would be so easy ... and taste a lot better."

Out came the cell (I mean, seriously, how did we live without smart phones?). Thanks to my trusty friend Tyler Florence, we quickly found an "ultimate" recipe, grabbed the ingredients, and were off to make our own home-cooked meal.

As always, we had a blast in the kitchen. The ingredients were so beautiful (I can't resist the bright yellow of the lemon or the green of the parsley) and the kitchen quickly began to smell like garlic and shallots. We were drooling the entire time. That, of course, is the sign you're about to have a memorable meal.

What I love most about this version of shrimp scampi is the pinch of red pepper flakes. Even if you don't really like heat in your dish, I recommend you add it. It provided just the right amount of spice, taking the pasta to a new level of delicious.
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