Sautéed Prawns and the Seafood Curse

Sauteed prawns

2 Servings

Since I set foot on Italian soil, I have been “chased” by seafood. Now, if you are a regular reader of F’sT, you know that I do not eat fish for the simple reason that I do not like the taste. For me cooking fish is… well, someone else might say “an act of love,” but since I am who I am… I’ll go with “tantamount to martyrdom”! 😉

I keep repeating to myself that seeing and smelling seafood all over is the more natural thing under the circumstances. After all, I’m on an Italian island and fish is the freshest thing you can find around here. Still, every time I go to a restaurant, finding something I can eat is an odyssey (thank goodness no one has come up with some kind of fishy ice cream idea so far!!!) 😉

Things are not getting any better at home. Every single member of my family seems to enjoy seafood and almost every morning when I wake up (let’s be honest here… late morning!) 😉 someone has already gone to the fish market to buy “the seafood of the day”.

Do you know the old saying “if you cannot beat them, join them”? Well, I decided to join my parents in the kitchen and take advantage of this fish invasion to learn something new.

The reason I picked this recipe is twofold.

The first – which is totally unrelated to culinary logic – is the color of the prawns that my dad brought home. The red was so perfectly vibrant that they were doomed to catch my trained eye of aesthete 🙂

Sauteed prawns

The second is that this is a very simple dish and it takes only about 15 minutes to make… a stretch of time my nostrils seem to still find tolerable. 😉


8 prawns
3 or 4 San Marzano Italian Peeled Tomatoes
1 clover, garlic
1 1/2 Tbsp, extravirgin olive oil
Some parsley leaves, finely chopped
Pepper flakes


Put some salt (to taste), the olive oil and the garlic in a non-stick skillet and brown the garlic. Throw the garlic away and add the tomatoes. After 1 minute, add the prawns, the parsley and some pepper flakes (to taste). Cover the skillet with the lid and let the prawns cook until the liquid in the skillet boils. Take the lid off and cook for 10 more minutes.

Et Voila’, ready to be served! Easy peasy! 🙂

P.S. Not a day goes by without a family member, a friend or an acquaintance telling me how healthy fish is, what I’m missing, bla, bla, bla… I live by a very simple rule: I do not tell people what to do and I do not judge them for what they do, simply because I don’t like to be told what to do and to be judged. Now, why oh why can I not receive the same treatment from others with regard to this fish thing of mine??? 😦


About Francesca

I am a cook and the founder and art director of Flora's Table, the fine cooking and wine blog. Check us out at :-)
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38 Responses to Sautéed Prawns and the Seafood Curse

  1. Great recipe – thanks! And the color is beautiful, as you say…

  2. The prawns are stunning, I totally get it, your aversion to fish that is. I like some fish but HATE the fishy taste and smell. I can tolerate some but for me it’s not pleasant at all and I hate fish bones. So I feel your pain my dear. Enjoy your time in Italy!

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, Suzanne. I’m glad to have an ally! 😉 I don’t know if the same happens to you but people think that, being a food blogger, I must love anything that is eatable. But I’m a human being first, with her likes and dislikes and any blog should reflect the true personality of the blogger. At least, this is my opinion! 🙂

  3. talkavino says:

    I’m still hopeful that one day you will magically turn around with seafood… This would broaden your culinary horizon tremendously : ). But yes, I also hear you – “don’t tell me what to do, and I will not tell you where you should go”… If that sounds mysterious, this is more of a direct translation from Rusian – when I will see you (soon : ) ), I will explain …

  4. ChgoJohn says:

    You like what you like, Francesca, and no amount of convincing will change that. That’s just the way it is. I’m glad you shared this recipe with us, though. It looks and sounds delicious. Those prawns are irresistible! I hope you’re having a fantastic holiday in Italy!

  5. What gorgeous gamberoni … and I am so sorry you cannot enjoy them the way an ordinary fish lover would. But no one should ‘force’ you to eat something you don’t enjoy and it’s very good of you not to make a fuss. Hopefully there are plenty of other foodstuffs on your home menu to make up for this fixation on fish!!!

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, Jo! You should know better than anyone else that there is no way I can starve in Italy. 😉 The country offers so much. It’s heaven for any kind of taste! 🙂

  6. This dish looks absolutely stunning! The deep dark red makes the shrimp look so appetizing. BTW, I totally support your dislike of seafood- no one should tell you what to eat!!

  7. Beautiful photos Francesca. I am smelling the browning garlic and tasting the shrimp, after having my mussels marinara last night. Question, is there something missing on the tomato quantity, 3/4 of what?

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, Richard! I’m sorry if I didn’t explain myself clearly. I meant 3 or 4 peeled tomatoes. I corrected the post thanks to your attentive comment. Thank you again! 🙂

  8. Mary says:

    Recipe looks delicious!

  9. Gorgeous prawns! I’m with you on the fish . . . I don’t hate fish, but I almost never cook it myself. I don’t trust myself not to cook up a plate of salmonella. ;o)

  10. chef mimi says:

    I’m glad you survived the 15 minute cooking time!!!! A great first baby step. Beautiful prawns!

  11. I like the sound of this prawn recipe. But most of all in this post I love the simple rule you live by: I think that unasked for advice however kindly meant can at best be annoying at worst hurtful. Enjoy the rest of your time in Italy Francesca.

    Best wishes Bx

  12. Beautiful. Nicely simple recipe, too.

    Oh, if only family could leave our likes and dislikes alone. It’s weird, how people tend to feel more connected to people who like what they like. And if they love us, they want us to join them in their favorite likes. Tell them you love them a lot, although and even when they like fish.

  13. Sofia says:

    Oh, it looks so good! Thanks for the recipe!

  14. Fig & Quince says:

    Fish ice cream! It could totally be the new thing. 😉

    I love your live and let live policy. I wish everyone adhered to it although I don’t mind some friendly nudging and advice here and then either.

    But back to the to the main topic and catch of the day: your prawn looks deliciouso!

    • Francesca says:

      Thank you, my dear Azita. I totally agree: fish ice cream could be the next culinary craziness. What do you think? I’d better come up
      with the revolutionary recipe? 😉

  15. Karen says:

    I’ll be very happy to eat your share of prawns…simple and delicious.

  16. The picture looks so great! The redness has really reflect the color of the prawns and made them even more tastier even by looking at them. The recipe is easy to follow. Can’t wait to try!

  17. Max says:

    Dear Francesca, if the island you are on is Sardinia, well… we are also on it, but we LOVE everything related to fish… including the Vermentino you eat it with…
    By the way, if you are not far from Olbia and you’d like to meet up, let us know so that we can arrange for it.

    Ciao cara, un abbraccio a tutti.


    • Francesca says:

      My dear Max,
      What a shame!!! I’m on my way back home.
      Enjoy your vacation on that wonderful island. You sure deserve it!
      Un bacio anche a Francesca e i bimbi. Divertitevi.
      Hopefully, I’ll see you all very soon.
      Francesca Xx

  18. laurasmess says:

    Aw, Francesca! It’s terrible to be one of the minority. Particularly if your dislike is seafood… it has such a strong odour (pretty much inescapable!). That said, this seafood dish looks gorgeous. I love the simple delicious flavours. Yum! Thanks for sharing xx

  19. Dina says:

    🙂 Your posts are always so well written, Francesca, you put a big smile on my face in the middle of the night(duty) 🙂 I l♥ve seafood, thanks for the great recipe and a virtual hug to Stefano for the beautiful photography and to you for your story.♥
    Enjoy your Sunday

    • Francesca says:

      I’m glad to hear that I was a good companion during your night shift. 😉
      Reading is one of my big passions and, although I’m not a writer, I always try to write something decent. Thank you so much for your compliments. It means more than I can say.
      Have a lovely week! Xx

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