In the Kitchen: Grilled Shrimp Wrapped in Pancetta

Chef Joe Simone is in the kitchen with March of Dimes making Grilled Shrimp wrapped in Pancetta with Caramelized Onions and Balsamic Vinegar.

Serves 4-6 as an appetizer


  • 2 pounds Spanish Onions
  • 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 12 Jumbo Shrimp, preferable Wild Caught White Shrimp from the Gulf of Mexico
  • 12 very thin slices pancetta (your local deli counter should be able to do this for you)
  • Dashes of olive oil to cook the shrimp
  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter, optional
  • Pinch salt to taste
  • Splashes of Traditional Balsamic Vinegar, I use Villa Manodori


  1. Trim and peel the onions and cut into 1/8” thick julienne.
  2. Place onions and olive oil into a saucepan, cover, and set over very low heat.
  3. Cook onions very slowly stirring occasionally until the onions have given off their water and are very soft. Continue to cook slowly (covered) until the onions are a golden brown and very silky. This process will take about 2 hours. Remove from heat, let cool and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  4. Wrap each shrimp with a piece of pancetta, pressing firmly to make the pancetta stick. When the shrimp are all wrapped you can cover and refrigerate up to 1 day before cooking.
  5. To serve, heat a pancake griddle to 350F (or warm a large non-stick skillet over med heat). When hot add a touch of olive oil and the shrimp. Cook about 3-4 minutes per side until the shrimp are cooked through and the pancetta is golden brown.
  6. Meanwhile warm the caramelized onions over med-high heat When hot add the butter if using and shake/stir the pan constantly until the butter melts into a smooth sauce. Season to taste with salt.
  7. Serve the shrimp atop the warm onions and drizzled with a touch of balsamic vinegar.

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