When I saw this recipe in Bon Appetit, I knew I had to make it.  It just LOOKED so savory that I immediately began to crave it as soon as I saw it.  I was not disappointed!  It is the perfect warm dish for a nice fall day.  I ended up using some substitutions and halving the recipe to make just enough for one person.

Ingredients (from Bon Appetit magazine*):
* 3 Tbsp olive oil
* 3 garlic cloves, minced
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 teaspoon chili powder
* 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
* 3/4 cups chopped tomato
* 1 can white beans
* 1/2 cup chicken broth
* 1.2 lb raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
* 1 tsp paprika
* 1 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley

A lot of times I like to prepare the ingredients while I’m cooking to most effectively utilize my time.  But in this case, I found that preparing the ingredients all at once first made the making the recipe much more easier. That being said, you’ll need to chop your tomatoes, mince your garlic, wash and rinse your white beans, and defrost your shrimp (if you are using frozen shrimp like me).

I don’t have a pan that I can fit in my broiler and also use on the stovetop, but if you do, you should definitely use that.  Because of my predicament, I had to use two different cooking receptacles, which wasn’t a big deal.  For the first step, I used a frying pan – I drizzled some olive oil onto the pan – about 2 tablespoons.  After it had been heating for a few minutes, I added one minced garlic, the chili powder, red pepper, and bay leaf.  I cooked this for a minute or two, being very careful to not burn the spices or the garlic.

Next, add the tomatoes with a touch of salt and pepper.  Cook for about 5 minutes until soft.  Crush the tomatoes with a wooden spoon.  Preheat the broiler.

Next, add the tomato paste.  I love this step because it elevates the fragrance of the food and also gives the tomatoes a gorgeous deep red hue.  Cook for another 3-4 minutes, then add in the beans and the broth.  Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat and cook until the mixture is slightly thickened.

While the broth is simmering,  prepare the shrimp.  Take the shrimp and add the paprika, 1 minced garlic clove, and some olive oil.  Add a little salt and pepper, and then stir the shrimp so it becomes evenly coated with all of the spices.

Remove the bay leaf from the beans. Transfer the beans to an oven safe pan.  Place the shrimp on top of the beans, and then place the whole thing directly underneath a broiler.  Cook until the shrimp is pink and just slightly roasted.  Add the chopped parsley on top.

Hints/Comments*:

* I really must insist on the flat leaf parsley.  To me, its not just a garnish, the flavor of the herb really elevates and brings a certain freshness to this recipe.

* I wish I had toasted bread as suggested  by bon appetit.  The meal is so hearty it would be lovely to have it offset by another texture

* I decided against using chiles de arbol as suggested by the original recipe, just because it wasn’t readily available to me and I had substitues