Grilled Shrimp & Zucchini Ribbon Skewers with Romesco Sauce

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I love recipes that are simple enough for a quick weeknight meal or fancy enough for a weekend cookout with friends (because in my household, cookouts are totally fancy…non of this hot dog & hamburger business!) There are only EIGHT ingredients in this entire recipe, and it comes together in under 30 minutes (not including marinating time). The zucchini ribbons really dress up the dish, and the edges get crispy while the inside stays creamy. The garlic, lemon and parsley in the shrimp marinade is the perfect complement to the flavors of the romesco sauce…which you are going to fall in love with and want to use on everything! To be honest, I normally don’t like roasted red peppers as I think their flavor overwhelms everything else in a dish, but the simple combination in this sauce is magical.

Recipe: Grilled Shrimp & Zucchini Ribbon Skewers with Romesco Sauce

For the Skewers:

Makes appx. 20 skewers
1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP lemon juice
1/4 c parsley, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
2 lbs extra-large shrimp, peeled & deveined
4 zucchini, thinly sliced into ribbons with a mandolin or vegetable peeler
Combine olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper, and toss with shrimp. Place in a bowl or ziplock baggie and marinate for 2 to 12 hours.
When ready to serve, heat grill to medium-high heat. Drizzle zucchini with olive oil & season with salt & pepper. Thread some zucchini ribbons onto skewer, then a shrimp, and continue to alternate. Cook skewers until shrimp are bright orange and slightly charred, about 3-4 minutes per side. Arrange on a platter.

Romesco Sauce

Makes appx. 2 cups
1, 16 oz jar roasted red peppers, drained of the liquid (organic if possible as they are on the dirty dozen list)
1 c sliced almonds, toasted
2 medium-sized garlic cloves (more or less depending on your taste)
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 TBSP lemon juice or sherry vinegar 
1 tsp sea salt
To toast the almonds:
Trader Joes sells already toasted almonds in both slivered and sliced – either is fine. If toasting your own, bake @ 350 for 5-10 minutes – the amount of time depends on if they are whole almonds or sliced. You want them to be golden brown & fragrant.
To make the sauce:
In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients until desired level of smoothness is achieved. If you’d like the sauce to be chunkier, you can reserve half of the peppers, puree the remaining ingredients and then pulse in the peppers until small pieces remain.
Place romesco in a bowl and serve along with shrimp & zucchini skewers.
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