Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Only a prawn in her game

Scampi at Carbone, Thompson at Bleecker, New York Times photo.
The reviewer thought these beauties were a take on "shrimp scampi" using langoustines instead of the shrimp, but that is not quite right: what scampi originally means, in Italian, is langoustine, or Norway lobster. The Italian-American "shrimp scampi" is a recipe for shrimp, or gamberi, with a concentration of white wine, garlic, and butter pulling a certain lobstery sweetness out of it, a nostalgia dish for an America where real scampi could not—still can't easily—be found. The menu name expresses this nicely: "scampi alla scampi", i.e., scampi in scampi-style.

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