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Basque Brochettes

D'Artagnan | Yield: 16 hors d'oeuvre | Cook Time: 15 minutes
These flavorful skewers highlight quintessential Basque flavors - shrimp, piment d'espelette and jambon de bayonne. Best of all, they're party perfect in just 15 minutes. For an even faster version, throw these babies on the grill.
Recipe Basque Brochettes

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons Piment d' Espelette, plus more to taste
  • 16 large shrimp, shelled, deveined, rinsed and pattted dry
  • Freshly cracked pepper
  • 2 packages sliced Jambon de Bayonne, each slice cut in half lengthwise to create strips
  • Fresh thyme leaves, to garnish

Preparation

  1. Soak 16 bamboo skewers in warm water. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F,  with rack in the center position.
  2. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add 1/4 cup olive oil, garlic and 2 teaspoons piment d'Espelette. Heat until the garlic sizzles and browns lightly around the edges, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Place each shrimp on a skewer, lengthwise so the shrimp is straightened out. Season shrimp with pepper and a pinch of piment d'Espelette, if desired. Set a rack over a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. One at a time, lay the jambon de Bayonne on a flat work surface, short side toward you and roll tightly around shrimp. Repeat with remaining skewers.
  5. Lay the shrimp on the prepared baking rack with at least 1/2 inch space between each one. Brush both sides with the reserved oil.
  6. Roast until shrimp are firm to the touch and lightly browned in places, about 8 minutes or so. Transfer to a serving platter, garnish with fresh thyme and serve immediately.

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