What to Cook Tonight – It must Be Pasta Night!!!
Linguine with Shrimp and Peas Recipe
Tonight is the night to prepare a delicious and lovely pasta dish. So linguine with Shrimp and Peas in a Pesto Sauce was the dinner ticket! We have been eating meat pretty much every night whether it is burger, tri-tip, chicken or BBQ Ribs. It is time to mix it up a little bit with a refreshing but easy to prepare pasta dish. Our course I rely on what I happen to have fresh in the fridge, frozen in the freezer and what’s available in our stocked pantry.
Since we don’t just run out to the store as much these days on a daily basis to pick up ingredients for evenings meal if we don’t have it on hand. So for tonight’s meal I got creative and sourced the ingredients from what I have on hand. Good thing we usually always have a good selection available to us at home. My recent delivery from Costco just brought us a large bag of lovely frozen shrimp, so for tonight – shrimp it is. Along with imported linguine and frozen peas from the pantry and freezer. I took a recipe that I usually do and adapted it to using the ingredients I have on hand here at home.
The original recipe calls for fresh shrimp, I used fresh frozen. It also called for fresh basil which I have just run out of, but fortunately we always keep on hand cubes of frozen Pesto Sauce which worked as a perfect substitute. The only other item the I had to change up a bit was I used Trader Joes Frozen Peas instead of fresh sugar snap peas since I did not have any of those available either.
As we all know in a pasta dish, you can create just about anything with what you have available at home provided you have the key ingredients which is of course good pasta, garlic, parmesan, and extra virgin olive oil (I like to use the freshest I can get from my quarterly delivery from my olive oil club). All of the rest you can easily improvise with on ingredients.
Linguine with Shrimp and Peas Recipe
· 1 16 ounce package of Linguine, or spaghetti, or Angel Hair or for that matter any pasta of your choice.
· Extra Virgin Olive Oil – at least 2 tablespoons
· Chili Oil if you have it, if not just take a teaspoon of Olive Oil and add Cayenne or chili flakes
· 1 ½ pounds of medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
· 1 pound of sugar snap pea pods, this is where I substituted frozen peas
· 2-3 large cloves of garlic minced
· 1 Tablespoon of Butter
· 1 ½ cups of dry white wine, I used a Chardonnay because that was what I was drinking of course
· 1 Tablespoon of Lemon Juice
· 1/3 cup of chopped fresh basil (this is where is substituted the pesto sauce cube)
· Fresh Ground Parmesan or whatever you have on hand
· Salt and Pepper to Taste
· Boil lightly salted water in a large pot. When it comes to a boil, had the pasta and cook for 8-10 minutes or until al dente. Test your pasta because the timing will vary depending on what type of pasta you are using. The thicker denser pastas will take a bit longer where an angel hair probably won’t take as long.
· Drain and reserve about a quarter cup of the pasta water that the pasta cooked in, in case you need to add a bit more liquid to the pasta dish. I rarely use the pasta water.
· Heat the olive oil and the chili oil in a wok style pan or any deep pan you have on hand. Mix in the shrimp, the pea pods and the garlic. If you are using frozen peas hold off add them from a minute. Cook and stir for about 2 minutes or until the shrimp are almost opaque. Then set them aside in another bowl.
· Pour the wine into the wok or pan, bring to a boil and cook until reduced by 1/3. This is where I added in my pesto cube. The add the shrimp, peas and garlic back to the pan. Stir and continue to cook over medium heat until the shrimp are completely opaque. Remove the wok or pan from the heat and mix in the butter, lemon juice and pesto sauce and fresh basil (remember I substituted a cube of pesto sauce we had frozen). You can also pick up premade Pesto from most grocery stores. Or if you have basil, garlic, spinach and pine nuts you can make your own from scratch. (see below) my recipe for homemade pesto sauce.
· Salt and Pepper to Taste, toss the mixture with the drained pasta and toss. Serve with your grated parmesan cheese to top it off. And serve with your favorite wine or beverage of choice.
Homemade Pesto Recipe and INGREDIENTS
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed (can sub half the basil leaves with baby spinach)
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Romano or Parmesan-Reggiano cheese (about 2 ounces)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup pine nuts (can sub chopped walnuts)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced (about 3 teaspoons)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, more to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, more to taste
- Food Processor
1 Pulse basil and pine nuts in a food processor: Place the basil leaves and pine nuts into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a several times.
2: Add the garlic and cheese: Add the garlic and Parmesan or Romano cheese and pulse several times more. Scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula.
3 Stream in the olive oil: While the food processor is running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady small stream. Adding the olive oil slowly, while the processor is running, will help it emulsify and help keep the olive oil from separating. Occasionally stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor.
4 Stir in salt and freshly ground black pepper, add more to taste.
Toss with pasta for a quick sauce, dollop over baked potatoes, or spread onto crackers or toasted slices of bread.
Enjoy! And Bon Appetit!
By Dynie Sanderson - NapaFoodGalTravels