<< River Otters

04/26/16 - Shrimp with Chervil Butter

One of our favorite dishes is Jasper White’s lobster with chervil butter. We enjoyed it at his restaurant back when we lived in the Boston area, and we, now and then, order a lobster and follow the recipe in his cookbook. Of course, it is easier to order lobster online than chervil.

We recently had some success with our chervil crop. OK, it was one plant, but it was fairly big. We didn’t want to bother ordering a lobster, so we decided to make a version of the dish using shrimp instead. It turned out wonderfully, so we’ll offer a recipe here for anyone who might want to try it.


  • 2 lbs large shrimp
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 2-3 ounces of chervil
  • about the same amount of chives
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • salt & pepper
  1. Peel and clean the shrimp.
  2. Heat a cast iron or other heavy pan on the stove. Use the highest stove setting. The goal is to cook the shrimp using as hot a pan as possible.
  3. Put 2 tbsp butter into the pan. If you are worried about burning the butter, use peanut oil or olive oil, but we just went for it.
  4. Add the shrimp and cook them for 5-10 minutes. The goal is to sear them if possible. We finished the job with a blowtorch equipped with a diffuser. Alternately, you might simply broil the shrimp in a metal pan.
  5. Turn off the stove. Pour in the bourbon. Stand back and light it. Swirl the pan a bit as the bourbon burns.
  6. When the flames go out, add the white wine. Turn the burner back high on and cook it down for a few minutes.
  7. Turn down the heat to low. Add 4 tbsp of butter and toss together with the shrimp until it melts.
  8. Add the chervil and chives. Toss a bit to mix. Turn of the burner and serve.

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