Have you ever had an appetizer, entrée, dessert or overall restaurant experience that you can’t stop dreaming about? For me, the restaurant is called Everyday People Café in Saugatuck-Douglas, Michigan. Here’s my re-creation of one of their delectable appetizers, which would make the perfect starter for a special New Year’s Eve dinner for two (or double/triple the recipe to serve at a holiday dinner party).
Sambuca Shrimp on Puff Pastry Squares
- 2 5 ” x 5” puff pastry squares
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted butter
- 1 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
- 6 Jumbo shrimp peeled and de-veined,
- tails on 16-20 count or larger is best
- Flour for dredging as needed
- 1.5 Tbsp Sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil
- drained and slivered
- 2 Tbsp Shallots minced
- 2 tsp Garlic minced
- Pinches Salt and pepper
- ½ oz Vermouth or sherry, or white wine for deglazing
- 1 oz Sambuca
- 1/3 Cup Heavy 35% cream
- 2 Tbsp Fresh chopped basil
- Place puff pastry squares on a baking sheet and bake at 350° F until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
- Dredge shrimp in flour. Heat butter and olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat until bubbly but not brown. Add shrimp to butter-oil mixture and cook shrimps on each side for about 1-2 minutes or until golden. Add garlic and shallots to the pan and cook for one minute.
- Add sun-dried tomatoes and sauté for 1 minute. Deglaze with dry vermouth/sherry/wine and reduce slightly. Carefully add Sambuca and flambé.
- When flame dies down, add cream and basil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook for another minute or two, to reduce slightly and to allow the flavours to mingle.
- Place each puff pastry square on a large plate and pour some of the sauce on the plate for decoration. Then place 3 shrimp and half of the remaining sauce in the center of each puff pastry square. Garnish with fresh basil and serve.
Dana Shortt is a mother of two and the owner/operator of Dana Shortt Gourmet and Gifts. The shop is a boutique-style gourmet food store specializing in hand crafted prepared meals, an olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting bar, gift baskets and quality chocolates from local suppliers. Dana received her formal culinary training at George Brown College. Along with her Culinary Management Diploma, she also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Hotel and Food Administration from the University of Guelph.