Tutus and Flamingos (Dorothy Cann Hamilton’s Sizzled Shrimp Provencal)

Tutus and flamingos are both pink. Tutus are for ballet, flamingos eat shrimp. This is how the two halves of this post will tie together.

So, I picked up dancing late in life. I did all the little girl classes that everyone does till I was 9 or 10 or 11 or something, and then I stopped. Cold turkey, no more little girl sparkly leotards for me.

Then, when I was fifteen, I started dancing again – mostly modern, a little bit of ballroom, and within a year, I was dancing hours each week, performing with a professional swing team, the Eastside Swing Cats and found myself minoring in dancing in college. I always leaned towards jazz and swing, but, like every good dancer, I took a little ballet on the side. It’s practically required. Ballet is like dance vitamins. You just can’t skip it. I got to the point where I was competent – I could spin, leap and pose properly and not look like a total idiot.

Then this happened, and I stopped dancing completely for two years. Last week, a med student who used to dance ballet professionally offered to teach a free ballet class to anyone interested. I pulled out my slippers, struggled into my tights and, yes, even put back on a leotard.

And you know what? I was embarrassingly terrible. All my jazz and swing habits put my weight in the wrong place for ballet and when I panic, guess where I shifted my weight? Bad Taryn. I couldn’t even execute a plie correctly.

I promise I used to be competent! Honest! Once a long time ago!

But you know what else? It was awesome. I was sore, my ankles hurt and I was sweating profusely at the end of the hour and a half. I had danced for the first time in two years and I knew I could get back into the rhythm of the movement if I dedicated myself to it. I’m hoping to keep dancing and eventually get back into my true loves of jazz and swing.

So I came home and made this. Shrimp are also pink, like ballet tutus.

Dorothy Cann Hamilton's Sizzled Shrimp Provencal

I love seafood, I love capers, I love lemons and limes (have you not realized this yet?) This is a totally classic dish, but still perfect served with a loaf of crusty bread, a tossed salad, a fresh wine and an extra squeeze of lemon tableside.

I did make this with bay shrimp, because it was what I had on hand, and I left out the parsley, because I didn’t want the flavor interference between the capers and the lemons – I wanted those two tastes to tango together, and boy did they ever.

Sizzled Shrimp Provencal

Serves 6. Allow 20 minutes. 

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 pounds bay shrimp
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons small capers with brine
juice of 2 fresh lemons (about 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1) In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil just til shimmering. Add the shrimp, garlic and capers and cook over medium heat til the shrimp are barely pink (bay shrimp cook quickly, so watch them carefully.)
2) As soon as the shrimp are barely pink, lower the heat to medium low and add in the lemon juice. Reduce the sauce down quickly, so as to not overcook the shrimp.
3) Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Every Friday, a group of women writers is blogging their way through 50 Women Game-Changers of Food – find more information here. Here’s who’s joining this week.

Mary of One Perfect Bite

Kathleen of Gonna Want Seconds
Barbara of Moveable Feasts
Amy of Beloved Green
Linda of Ciao Chow Linda
Deborah of Taste and Tell
Barbara of Lines from Linderhof

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7 Responses to Tutus and Flamingos (Dorothy Cann Hamilton’s Sizzled Shrimp Provencal)

  1. Good for you Taryn! I could never in a million years take a ballet class. I'd be hobbled for weeks. Love your shrimp dish, this week's recipes all seem really healthy and so elegant!

  2. Love your 'pink' connection! Congrats on getting into dance … it is surely a wonderful expression, but boy, strenuous! I don't know that I have the confidence to stumble about in a dance class – let alone don a pink tutu!The shrimp dish looks wonderful! I can see some of our Maine shrimp making their way into this dish! Yum!

  3. girlichef says:

    Mmmm…what a dance, these sound amazing!

  4. Picadillo says:

    Sounds great! Hope all is going well with the "library" project.

  5. Barbara says:

    Good for you, Taryn. Keep up the hard work…and ballet IS hard.Love your choice for our game changer. Shrimp paired with garlic and lemons sounds divine.

  6. Jeanette says:

    Glad to hear you're dancing again – and I love your choice of this simple shrimp dish for this week's event.

  7. Beth says:

    I think you're great just for trying it again!

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