You can never have too many quick and easy recipes in your arsenal of go-to weeknight meals, the type that can be made from memory when you’re too tired to think. It doesn’t get much easier or tastier than our Garlicky Roasted Shrimp and Swiss Chard, a recipe with very few ingredients and a simple one-pan cooking method that makes getting a healthy meal on the table a cinch.
Roasting the shrimp and the chard in the same pan not only makes washing dishes quick work, it also cooks both to tender perfection. Roasting greens in the oven keeps them slightly crisp rather than giving them the limp texture that sautéed greens can have. In the oven, the edges of the Swiss chard become brown and crackly and the center of the leaves are tender but not soggy. The trick to cooking the Swiss chard perfectly is using a cookie sheet or a baking pan with only a small rim; if you use a roasting pan or baking sheet with a deep rim, moisture will become trapped in the pan and make the greens too soft. Spreading the raw greens out on a large sheet pan to cook is also easier than trying to stuff them into a sauté pan on the stove, which forces you to cook the greens in batches so the leaves don’t spill over the sides. Oven-cooked greens also require very little attention, just one stir during the 10-12 minute roasting process.
In the oven with the greens, the shrimp become plump and juicy. Fresh shrimp have a slightly sweet flavor that needs little more than olive oil, garlic and salt for seasoning. Frozen shrimp tend to be bland and often need more kick, in which case you can add spices such as cumin, coriander and paprika before the shrimp go in the oven.
In either case, we add plenty of garlic to this dish and leave it in thin slices rather than mincing the cloves. In the oven, the garlic becomes soft and mellow – it doesn’t have the pungent, spicy kick that sautéed garlic has – so if you’re a garlic lover pile it on.
The most time-consuming part of this dish is peeling and cleaning the shrimp, but considering how easy the rest of the recipe is, it’s hard to complain. This is a simple meal, but when made with high-quality ingredients it bursts with fresh, satisfying flavor.
Approx 3 servings
- 1 pound raw shrimp, shelled and de-veined
- 2 bunches of Swiss chard, sliced thinly (stems included)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 4 large or 6 small cloves of garlic (or more to taste), peeled and sliced thinly
- Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Toss the shrimp and greens with olive oil and garlic. Spread evenly on a sheet pan. It’s best if the greens are in a thin layer, so if you have lots of greens it’s better to use two sheet pans rather than one.
Roast for 8 minutes then stir. Roast 3-5 minutes more until shrimp are cooked through.
Salt to taste before serving.
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