Recipe: Donovan's Shrimp Scampi a la Sofie

Inspired by Rescuing the Bad Boy

 Seven years ago, Donovan Pate was sweating over four sautΓ© pans when he warned his then-coworker Sofie Martin not to sell one more Shrimp Scampi special or he’d brand her for life. Sofie took that bet, marched out of the kitchen, and sold three. Today, Rescuing the Bad Boy’s broody hero still addresses Sofie as β€œScampi”, and was nice enough to share his secret recipe for the dare that inspired her name.

shrimp scampi Depositphotos_8803669_original.jpg


  • Β½ lb. jumbo shrimp, deveined and peeled, patted dry and laid in one layer on a plate

  • 1 Β½ Tbsp. of butter

  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/3 c. vegetable broth

  • 1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 2 tsp. lemon zest

  • 1 Tbsp. chopped flat leaf parsley

  • Β½ cup orzo pasta

  • sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, and cayenne to taste


  1. Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way with water and bring to a boil. Add pasta, cook 9 minutes.

  2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp. of butter.

  3. Salt and pepper both sides of the shrimp.

  4. When butter is bubbling, turn heat down to medium, invert the plate over the skillet so that all the shrimp hit the pan at the same time.

  5. Add garlic. Cook 1 minute. Flip each shrimp, cook 2 more minutes. Set shrimp and garlic aside in a bowl.

  6. Add vegetable broth and lemon juice to the hot skillet, scrape with a wooden spoon to get brown bits off the bottom. Add drained, cooked pasta to the broth mixture in the skillet, then add lemon zest, parsley, and remaining Β½ Tbsp. of butter.

  7. Toss in shrimp. Add more salt, pepper, and a dash of cayenne to taste.

Serve immediately, with warm, buttered bread and a cool, crisp salad.


Bon AppΓ©tit!