Prawns with Garlic Chips and Preserved Lemon

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time:
  • Provided by:

    Ingredients Print Recipe

  • 12 Large Prawns (16/20 count) with shell and head intact
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon piment d'Espelette
  • Fleur de sel or other coarse sea salt for finishing
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic Chips
  • 1 Teaspoon finely diced Confit of Lemon
  • 1 Teaspoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Using small scissors or a paring knife, and working on the convex side, cut along the length of each prawn shell, leaving the head and tail intact. Remove and discard the dark veinlike intestinal tract.

Heat a griddle, cast-iron skillet, or saute pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and warm it until it ripples. Add the prawns and cook, on the first side for about 2 minutes, or until they begin to turn opaque. Using tongs, turn the shrimp and cook the second side another 2 minutes, or until bright pink and opaque.

To serve, immediately transfer the prawns to a warmed plate and sprinkle with the piment d'Espelette, fleur de sel to taste, garlic chips, lemon confit, and parsley. Drizzle the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over the shrimp and toss well.

Confit of Lemon

  • 10 Lemons, quartered lengthwise
  • 2 star anise pods
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seed
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Put the lemon quarters in 1 or 2 sterilized jars just large enough to hold them snugly. Add the star anise, coriander seed, salt and sugar, dividing them equally if using 2 jars. Add boiling water to the jar(s), filling to the rim. Let cool, then cover tightly and turn the jar(s) Upside down several times to combine ingredients. Store at room temperature, turning the jar(s) occasionally for at least 3 weeks, then keep in the refrigerator for up to 4 months.

    Garlic Chips

    Slice 3 or 4 garlic cloves paper-thin length-wise. In a small skillet, warm 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil over medium heat until it ripples. Add the garlic slices and stir. If necessary, tilt the pan to gather the oil and the garlic along one edge so the garlic is immersed in the oil. Cook for 1.5 minutes to 2 minutes, or just until the garlic slices are lightly golden. Do not let them brown or they will be bitter. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the garlic to paper towels to drain and cool completely. They will become crispier as they cool. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks. The oil can be strained through a fine-mesh sieve and stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Use for sautéing dished when you want a subtle garlic flavor.

    Guest Chef:
    Chef Gerald Hirigoyen

    Hirigoyen's aspiration to become a chef at the tender age of eight was likely a result of growing up in a family where both parents were zealous about cooking. As a teenager he moved to Paris for a classical pastry apprenticeship under Master Patissier Jean Millet, and by his mid-twenties, Hirigoyen decided it was time to venture abroad. Following his arrival in the U.S. were stints at classic French restaurants, all in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was in 1991 that Hirigoyen's gifted skills as a chef and restaurateur came to the forefront, however, when he and a partner opened Fringale, a truly modern French bistro, to national acclaim. As Michael Bauer once stated in a San Francisco Chronicle review, "Fringale set the bar for casual, well-priced bistro fare for more than a decade and made an instant star of Hirigoyen." Living in the Bay Area for more than 25 years, Chef Hirigoyen has developed a fine appreciation for the California culinary sensibility, incorporating fresh ingredients into simple yet scrumptious dishes that echo the local spirit as well as that of his homeland. No truer example exists of Hirigoyen's ability to integrate the two cuisines than Piperade, the restaurant that he opened with his wife Cameron in 2002. The menu at Piperade, which christened Hirigoyen's "West-Coast Basque Cuisine," thoroughly reflects his culinary heritage and talent for remaining true to the main components of each dish. After clearly demonstrating his knack for bridging cultures and cuisines, Hirigoyen seized the opportunity in the summer of 2004 to create a stylish Spanish tapas bar. Bocadillos, (which means "little sandwiches,") represents what Hirigoyen likes to call "San Sebastian meets Barcelona in San Francisco." Opening to accolades for its creative menu and sleek ambiance, Bocadillos has established itself as yet another trademark in Hirigoyen's growing list of congenial dining establishments. Ever on the move, Chef Hirigoyen expanded his culinary expertise beyond the Bay Area as Consulting Chef of the Miro Restaurant at Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara for a number of years. Then it was Williams-Sonoma, Inc. who came calling in 2007, looking to revamp the dining facilities in their Corporate Headquarters. Hirigoyen implemented an expanded menu of classic American favorites with a twist, as well as created a highly successful in-house catering program for the company that he continues to oversee.

    His honors and accomplishments cover a wide and distinguished spectrum. Renowned national food journals such as Gourmet, Bon Appetit, and The New York Times have featured him in glowing reviews and write-ups. A few career highlights include being named one of "Food & Wine Magazine's Best New Chefs in America" in 1994, and as San Francisco Magazine's only "Chef of the Year" to be named not just once, but twice: in 1995 and in 2003. Gerald was particularly proud to be nominated by a jury of his peers for the James Beard Award: "Best Chef, California" in 2006.

    Hirigoyen is the author of three cookbooks; "Bistro" (Sunset Books ©1995), "The Basque Kitchen" (Harper-Collins ©1999) and "Pintxos" a stunning collection of small plate recipes that Ten Speed Press released in the spring of 2009. Equally happy to converse on the subject of wine, (especially Grenache!) he co-owns Arrels vineyard and Clos Pissarra winery in Priorat, Spain, with his close friend and Master Sommelier, Emmanuel Kemiji.

    1015 Battery St
    San Francisco, California 94111
    (415) 391-2555

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