The classic — and amazingly easy — French sauce made with butter and wine gets a glamorous makeover with Champagne. Feel free to use less-expensive sparkling wine for cooking, but keep the blanc de blancs flowing as an accompaniment.
- 2 cups champagne or 2 cups other dry sparkling wine
- 1⁄3 cup finely chopped shallot
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar or 2 tablespoons other white wine vinegar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon whole black peppercorn
- 1 cup champagne or 1 cup other dry sparkling wine
- 1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons minced shallots
- 1⁄2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 24 uncooked jumbo shrimp, peeled with tail left intact, deveined (about 2 pounds)
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
- vegetable oil cooking spray
- 1 cup chilled unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
- For Sauce Base:
- Combine Champagne, shallots, vinegar, and peppercorns in heavy medium saucepan.
- Boil until reduced to 1/4 cup liquid, about 20 minutes.
- (Can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.)
- For Shrimp:
- Combine Champagne, olive oil, shallots, and ground pepper in resealable plastic bag.
- Add shrimp to bag and seal; shake bag to coat shrimp evenly.
- Marinate shrimp at room temperature at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour, turning bag occasionally.
- Mix chives, tarragon, and parsley in small bowl.
- Preheat broiler.
- Spray broiler pan with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Drain shrimp; discard plastic bag with marinade.
- Arrange shrimp on prepared pan in single layer.
- Broil shrimp until just opaque in center, about 2 minutes per side.
- Stand 3 shrimp, tails upright, in center of each plate.
- Rewarm sauce base over medium-low heat. Whisk in butter 1 piece at a time, just allowing each to melt before adding next (do not boil or sauce will separate).
- Season beurre blanc to taste with salt and pepper.
- Spoon warm sauce around shrimp.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs and serve.
- Market tip: Champagne and sparkling wines labeled extra dry are actually slightly sweeter than those labeled brut. The latter works best for this dish.