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Shrimp with Ouzo and Fennel Cream

Provided by Mel & Sheryl London

We first tasted this dish on the Greek island of Rhodes. A simple stove top sauté of fennel is sparked with the potent Greek ouzo liquor, then tempered with a bit of cream. Served in a typical glazed clay gratin dish called a “giouvetsi” – you feel that you have returned to Rhodes!

Shrimp with Ouzo and Fennel Cream


  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 medium flat-shaped fennel bulb, cored, trimmed of outer coarse leaves and very thinly sliced (fronts reserved for garnish)
  • 20 large shrimp, peeled
  • ¼ cup ouzo
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • Few drops Tabasco
  • Salt & pepper to taste


Heat the olive oil in the 12 inch heavy skillet (preferably non-stick) over medium-high heat. Add the fennel and sauté, stirring frequently until tender crisp, about 3-5 minutes. Add the shrimp and sauté for 1 minute. Turn the shrimp over and cook for 1-2 minutes more.

Heat the ouzo in a separate small skillet over medium-high heat until it flames. Carefully pour the flaming ouzo over the shrimp and very gently toss the pan until the flames die out (keep a pan lid ready to extinguish any too enthusiastic flames). Then add the cream, tomato paste, Tabasco, salt and pepper to taste. Bring just to a boiling point. Then spoon the mixture into individual glazed clay gratin dishes or plates. Garnish with reserved fennel fronds and serve.

Serves 4



MEL & SHERYL LONDON are the authors of eleven cookbooks, including “A Seafood Celebration” and “The Fish Lovers” Cookbook.” They are winners of the James Beard Award and the Tastemaker Award and were finalists for the IACP Cookbook Award for “The Gourmet Garage Cookbook.” They have been loyal and loving customers of The Lobster Place since the company first opened its doors in Chelsea Market.