Pasta Shells with Shrimp and Garlicky Breadcrumbs

  • Active Time 20m
  • Total Time 20m
  • Rating ****

Serves 4

Parmesan and a lemon anchovy dressing coat shells, shrimp and curly endive for a pasta salad that's second cousin to a shrimp Caesar. Instead of big croutons, sauteed bread crumbs make a crisp topping.


  • For Breadcrumbs:
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt
  • Fresh-ground black pepper
  • For the Pasta and Shrimp:
  • 3/4 pound medium pasta shells
  • 1 pound large shrimp, shelled and halved lengthwise
  • For the Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • 3/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 3 ounces shredded curly endive (about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese



In a medium nonstick frying pan, heat the 2 tablespoons oil over moderate heat. Add the breadcrumbs, garlic and 1/8 teaspoon each of salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, about 5 minutes.


In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta shells until almost done, about 10 minutes. Add the shrimp to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until both the shrimp and the pasta shells are done, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Drain thoroughly.


In a large glass or stainless steel bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, anchovy paste, Worcestershire sauce and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the remaining 1/2 cup oil slowly, whisking.

TO SERVE: Add the pasta and shrimp, the curly endive and the 1/3 cup Parmesan to the dressing and toss. Serve the salad warm or at room temperature, topped with the garlic breadcrumbs and the remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan.

Tip: WINE RECOMMENDATION: Full-bodied, fresh yet tart pinot grigio works well with salads; its soft apple and nut notes are perfect foils for garlic and Parmesan.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.

RecID 2904

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