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Gambas Pil Pil
(Sizzling Spicy Shrimp)

This dish of “Gambas Pil Pil” is perhaps one of my wife’s favorite ways to eat shrimp. It has its origins in Southern Spain, where fat, juicy prawns were cooked in olive oil with lots of garlic and the hot peppers brought in by traders from North Africa. It is usually brought to the table sizzling and topped with lots and lots of parsley, and is a great dish to share. It is also a perfect dish to accompany with Manzanilla Sherry.

Gambas PilPil (shrimp with garlic slices, red pepper flakes, olive oil, parsley) on a small white skillet

Gambas Pil Pil Recipe

(Serves 4)


  • 20 x 15-20 Count Shrimp (shelled with tail on)

  • 6 Cloves of Garlic (peeled and sliced thinly)

  • 1 ½ Teaspoons Paprika

  • 1 Teaspoon Salt (more to taste)

  • 1 Teaspoon Ground White Pepper (more or less to taste)

  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Red Pepper Flakes (You can reduce this if you want it less fiery)

  • 1 Cup Fresh Parsley (finely Chopped)

  • ½ Cup Olive Oil (You don’t need Extra Virgin, just a decent olive oil)

  • ½ Lemon



  1. This is best cooked in a cast iron skillet or a wok.

  2. Add the oil to the pan, and heat on a gentle heat until a piece of garlic sizzles when you drop it in.

  3. Add the red pepper flakes and the garlic. Cook for two minutes, being careful to make sure the garlic does not burn.

  4. Once the garlic is golden brown, add the salt and the paprika. Cook for a further minute.

  5. Add the shrimp, toss in the oil and spice mixture, and cover the pan.

  6. Turn up the heat to medium and cook until the shrimp begin to turn pink.

  7. Add the chopped parsley, and squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the dish.

  8. Serve immediately with LOTS of bread to mop up the hot juices.

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