Sautéed Shrimp with Garlic, Fennel, Tomatoes and Orzo

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 large fennel bulb with fronds, trimmed, thinly sliced, fronds
  • eserved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • ½ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 pound plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 20 Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, pitted, halved
  • 1 cup crumbled soft fresh goat cheese (about 4 ounces)
  • 3 ½ cups freshly cooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta, about 1 cup uncooked)

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy large skillet over medium high heat. Add shrimp, sauté until almost cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the same skillet. Add sliced fennel, garlic and crushed red pepper, sauté for 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and wine, simmer until fennel is tender, about 4 minutes. Return shrimp to the skillet and add lemon juice and olives, simmer until shrimp are cooked through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, add goat cheese and simmer until cheese begins to melt, about 30 seconds.

Place orzo in bowl, stir in shrimp mixture, garnish with fennel fronds. Makes 4 main coarse servings.