Basque Style Shrimp Over Lemon Spinach Rice

Chef Joe Dela Pena



  • 1 Pound XW Shrimp
  • 3 Tablespoons Piment d’Ville
  • 1 Pound Butter, Chilled and Cubed
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Paprika• 2 Cloves Thinly Sliced Garlic
  • 1 Pound Spinach
  • 1 Lemon, Zested and Juiced
  • 2 Cups Rice (short or long grain is fine)
  • Kosher Salt
  • ½ Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons Chopped Parsley
  • Black Pepper
  • 4 Cups Water or Chicken Stock


  1. For the Shrimp: Warm a small sauce pan over low heat. Add EVOO and sweat sliced garlic over low heat until soft and fragrant. Add Piment d’Ville, paprika, tomato paste, and salt to taste. Continue over low heat until incorporated. Add butter in segments, making sure to control the temperature of the pan. Continue to add butter over low heat and swirl or stir the pan until ingredients are incorporated. If bubbles appear in butter, lower heat. Cook shrimp in small batches in the sauce pan, making sure that they are fully immersed in the butter, about 4-5 minutes or until shrimp are opaque. Remove shrimp with slotted spoon, set aside, and continue process with remaining shrimp. Once finished, reserve poaching liquid. Shrimp can be placed back in the poaching liquid briefly before serving to warm through. Also, poaching liquid can be frozen and reused.

  2. For the Rice: Drizzle EVOO in a heavy bottom pot, add rice, and saute for about 1-2 minutes over medium heat. Add water or chicken stock, lemon juice, half the lemon zest, and a few heavy pinches of salt (if using water). Bring to a boil and then cover, reducing heat to medium. Continue cooking for 20-30 minutes until rice is at desired doneness. Drizzle EVOO into a large skillet, add spinach, salt and black pepper to taste, and cook until all rendered liquid has evaporated. In a large mixing bowl, combine rice and spinach until incorporated.

  3. For Gremolata: Use your favorite breadcrumb (Homemade or store bought. I prefer Panko). Heat EVOO in large skillet over medium heat. Add panko and ¼ teaspoon of kosher salt. Stir to coat in oil. Add lemon zest and continue to cook and stir until breadcrumbs are golden brown. Remove from heat, stir in parsley.4. Plating: Use a wide, shallow bowl or plate. Spoon Spinach lemon rice into the middle of the bowl, top with about 5 shrimp, spoon flavored butter/poaching liquid over shrimp, and sprinkle gremolata on top.
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