MARIO’S SHRIMP MARSALA (“Sicilian housewife-style”, for four)

 Shrimp, braised, Mario's shrimp marsala 1  Shrimp, braised, Mario's shrimp marsala 2

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium red onion, cut into ¼ inch dice

1 rib celery with leaves, cut into ½ inch pieces

4 medium plum tomatoes, roughly chopped

1 tablespoon pine nuts

1 tablespoon currants

2 tablespoons small capers, rinsed and drained

1 cup dry marsala

½ teaspoon fennel seeds

½ teaspoon hot red pepper flakes

1 bay leaf, preferably fresh

2 pounds extra-large shrimp (21 to 30 per pound) shrimp, peeled and deveined

salt and freshly ground black pepper

fennel fronds for garnish (optional)


  1. In a 12 inch saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Add the onion and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.   Add the tomatoes, pine nuts, currants, capers, marsala, fennel seeds, red pepper flakes, and bay leaf and bring to a boil.
  1. Lay the shrimp in one layer over the tomato mixture, cover, and simmer for 3 minutes, or until the shrimp are cooked through. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  1. Serve warm, or allow to cool to room temperature. Garnish with fennel fronds, if using.


adapted from Mario Batali, Molto Italiano

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