Monday, October 25

{the dish} shrimp stew & JAWS


I stumbled upon the movie JAWS just the other day. I really had no business kicking back and watching a movie. I mean who do I think I am? It was a week day there was homework being finished, dishes to be done, laundry to be folded, emails sent, dogs fed ... but there it was.

Dunnna .... Dunna ...... Dunna, dunna, dunnna .... duntdata daaaaaa!

Well something like that.

The music, the story - old ... yet familiar - was still a draw and so intense! I was still on the edge of my seat. Every time the music would build slowly, the light would dim and you could feel it coming.

Dunnna .... dunnna And then BAMMM.
Heart stop, quick breath, muscles tense
( a shot of pure terror )


All hail Steven Spielburg ... the ultimate story teller!
(and can you believe only 1 nude scene - how can that be????)


Some of the lines are just classic. Like when Roy Scheider who plays chief Brody catches his first glimps of the 30 ft shark. He retreats slowly into the cabin of the ship and utters with petrified fear in his eyes, "we are going to need a bigger boat."


Who cares that the shark doesn't look real. It is the feeling, the music and our minds that make it real. It is that vicious circle of being drawn in and wanting to be scared but fearing it just the same. We know it is coming and it still gets us.


And the theme so simple: Man vs beast. Classic conflict but done so well.

Really I couldn't take my eyes off of it. Robert Shaw plays the gruff, sea worn captain of the ship. He throws everything to the wind when he pounds the radio leaving them stranded - no radio in a sinking boat in the middle of the ocean with the ultimate predator upon them.

He is salty and weathered ... Yup he seems like a stew guy to me...

shrimp stew by ann west

1 onion chopped
2 shallots chopped fine
2 thick slices of pancetta chopped (or bacon)
3 leeks - washed and sliced white parts only
2 sweet potatoes peeled and chopped
2-3 lbs shrimp - peeled and deveined
2 cups white wine
2 cup chicken broth
r 3 cans of white beans (if you want to add fresh cook them first in broth- delicious)
1 can whole tomatoes chopped or 1 pt of grape tomatoes
thyme & rosemary
salt & pepper

Saute your shrimp in oil and set aside. Saute your onion, shallot and pancetta in olive oil. Until done. Add your leeks and sweet potato. Once soft add the shrimp and give it a good toss. Add some salt and pepper and perhaps a dash of cayenne. Add your thyme and rosemary. Add your wine and reduce a little. Add you beans and slowly add your stock to the desired consistency. Let this simmer for 20 minutes and adjust your seasonings. Serve with crusty bread and top with a squeeze of lemon and some parsley.

enjoy and go watch JAWS!


4 comments:

Kristen In London said...

Hilarious, Ann! I just love how you mix your inspiration in daily life with your fantastic recipes. The moment my no-shellfish child is away, I am making this stew. How wonderful. Thank you!

citymouse said...

I can still remember going to see Jaws in the theater. It was probably the scariest thing I had ever watched up to that point with the possible exception of the rat movies Willard/Ben. (I think I peed my pants.) That theme is iconic!

I always think of shrimp dishes like this in a southern vein, but there's really nothing southern about your recipe. It sounds really good. My dad LOVES shrimp, and since he's doing his own cooking these days, I try to cook for him at least once a week. I will have to make this and invite him over soon.

Shari Lidji said...

great post ann! love your story telling.....i posted it to my FB friends. hope everyone visits your awesome blog!

Decorator In a Box said...

Great blog! I never knew the movie Jaws could make me so hungry for shrimp stew:) I still enter an aqaruarium with caution after that movie.