Weekend date night dinners have always been important to us. We have always loved cooking dinner together, and we try to make something special on Friday or Saturday nights. When we received sparkling wine from Franciacorta (c/o) a few weeks ago, along with this recipe from Italian Chef Stefano Cerveni of Le Due Colombe, we thought it would be the perfect date night meal!
Franciacorta is a DOCG wine region in northern Italy and is the first Italian wine made exclusively by secondary fermentation in the bottle. We’ve enjoyed it both at SPQR and Flour + Water in San Francisco, but we’re looking forward to visiting on our next trip to Italy, especially since it’s just an hour from Milan.
Chef’s Stefano’s recipe was so intriguing, we had to make it. Sicilian red shrimp over pureed violet potatoes? How could we not? His recipe uses raw shrimp. We unfortunately do not have access to shrimp plucked straight from the Mediterranean, so we seared them. Spot prawns would also work well.
This dish sounds involved and looks fancy, but it was actually really easy to make and didn’t take very much time at all. Everything except searing the shrimp can be done in advance and kept warm on the stove. To keep things easy, we didn’t make the purple potato chips. Our tips: use flat plates and a small offset spatula for the perfect purple smear, and use good french butter for the sauce. It’s so rich and creamy, it makes a difference.
This was paired with Franciacorta Satèn. If you truly want to have the best experience with Franciacorta, you should use white wine glasses like these or these. They allow the wine to breathe. If you prefer the look of champagne flutes, these are by far our favorite, but they are very fragile. We recommend getting a pair and keeping them for yourself. For parties, pull out these from Riedel or these (set of four).
Thank you to Franciacorta for sponsoring this post.
- In a small sauce pan, boil the violet potatoes and minced shallot in salted water until the potatoes are very soft. Drain without drying too much (save a little of the water in case the potatoes are too thick). Add the olive oil, and using a potato masher, then a spatula, work the potatoes into a smooth paste. Don't use a blender, they will turn to glue.
- Meanwhile, in a saucier pan, reduce the sparkling wine until it is thickened and only a few tablespoons are left. Whisk in the butter and keep warm.
- Season the prawns with salt and pepper, then sear over high heat on both sides, just until cooked through.
- To plate, spread about 2 tablespoons of the potato puree on a plate. Arrange the shrimp over the potatoes, and garnish with microgreens. Finish with a spoonful of sauce and serve immediately.