- 2 pounds (16/20-count) whole shrimp
- Ice, for cooling the shrimp
- 2 pinches saffron
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 bulbs fennel, roughly chopped
- 1 Spanish onion, roughly chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 tomato, cut in 1/2
- 8 cups water
- 1 bunch fresh tarragon
- 1 bunch fresh basil
- Kosher salt, for seasoning
- Shaved Fennel, recipe follows
- Fennel fronds, for garnish
- Special equipment: 6-inch bamboo skewers
Remove the heads and shells from the shrimp, keeping the tails intact, and reserve. Devein the shrimp and set aside on ice.
For poaching liquid: steep the saffron in the white wine. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat until oil slides easily across the pan, add the reserved shrimp heads and shells and cook until they turn an orange-red color. Add the fennel, onion, carrot and gently brown, about 2 minutes. Using a cheese grater, gently grate the tomato into the broth and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes. Add the white wine and saffron mixture, water, whole tarragon, and whole basil. Bring to a boil and reduce to a gentle simmer for 45 minutes, skimming frequently. Strain and set aside.
For the skewers: place shrimp on a skewer, piercing through the tail and body, about 3 per skewer. Season with kosher salt.
Return the poaching liquid to the stove and heat to a gentle simmer. Add the shrimp skewers to the liquid and cook, until the shrimp are firm and just cooked through, being careful not to over cook, about 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Serve on top of Shaved Fennel with Citrus Vinaigrette and garnish with fennel fronds.
- 1 medium bulb fennel, sliced thinly
- 1 ripe avocado, sliced
- 1 grapefruit, sections removed
- Citrus vinaigrette, recipe follows
Carefully arrange fennel, avocado, and grapefruit on a plate and dress with the Citrus Vinaigrette.