Serves 4 to 6


Shell-on shrimp provide such a nice brininess, the dish hardly needs added salt, but peeled shrimp also work. Any size shrimp will do.

  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, preferably Spanish
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped garlic (from 3 cloves)
  • 1 tsp. mild red pepper flakes, preferably Aleppo or Marash
  • 1 pound shrimp, preferably with shell on (see note)
  • 2 Tbsp. hot water
  • 1/2 tsp. flaky sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. sweet smoked paprika (pimentón de la Vera, dulce)
  • Crusty bread, for serving


    In a 12-inch cazuela or heavy frying pan, combine the oil, garlic and pepper flakes. Set over medium-low heat to warm slowly (on a diffuser if using a cazuela), gradually raising the heat to medium-high until the oil is hot and the garlic starts to sizzle and just turns golden, about 3 minutes.

    Add the shrimp and cook, turning once, until firm and white throughout, 2 to 5 minutes; the timing depends on their size. Remove the pan from the heat. Sprinkle the shrimp with the hot water, salt and paprika. Serve at once, directly from the cazuela or on plates. Accompany with the bread for mopping up the cooking juices.

    Note: Set the shrimp out at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes before cooking so they are not ice-cold when they hit the pan.

    From Unforgettable: The Bold Flavors of Paula Wolfert's Renegade Life, © 2017 by Emily Kaiser Thelin, M&P; originally published in Mediterranean Clay Pot Cooking by Paula Wolfert. Copyright (c) 2009 by Paula Wolfert. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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