One woman's foray into cooking for herself, for her family, and for her friends. It's not always picture-perfect, sometimes a little messy, but it's always delicious. Join me in exploring new recipes, savoring the "résultats" and learning from the "erreurs".
I receive daily emails from Fine Cooking magazine's website highlighting a particular recipe, ingredient, technique, etc. Sunday's recipe, Pea & Shrimp Penne with Basil, definitely appealed to me. Shrimp, pasta, and basil are a few of my very favorite ingredients, so I was very intrigued. The subject of the email was "Make It Tonight", and so I complied! The wonderful scent of fresh basil (and lots of it!), along with the minced garlic, serrano pepper, and shallots, was intoxicating. The finished dish was so flavorful and fresh-tasting. I will definitely be making this dish again. Hats off to Fine Cooking!
Pea & Shrimp Penne with Basil
1-1/2 lb. shrimp (21 to 25 per lb.), peeled, deveined, and cut in half lengthwise
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
5 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. finely grated lemon zest
1-1/2 cups fresh shelled peas (about 1-1/2 lb. unshelled) or frozen peas
3/4 lb. dried penne
Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely diced shallots
1 tsp. minced garlic
3/4 tsp. seeded and minced hot fresh chile, such as Thai bird or serrano
2 oz. arugula, trimmed, washed, and dried (about 2 lightly packed cups)
Toss the shrimp with half of the basil, 2 Tbs. of the olive oil, and the lemon zest. Cover and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat. Put the peas in a large metal sieve and dip them into the boiling water. Cook until just tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Lift the sieve from the water, let the peas drain, and then spread them on a baking sheet in a single layer to cool.
Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook, following the package directions, until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water and drain the pasta.
Meanwhile, take the shrimp out of the fridge and season them lightly with salt and pepper. Heat the remaining 3 Tbs. oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots, garlic, chile, and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots are soft and lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and continue to cook, stirring, until the shrimp have turned pink and are almost cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the peas and remove from the heat.
Return the drained pasta to its pot and add the shrimp mixture and 2 Tbs. of the pasta water. Cook over medium heat until the shrimp are completely cooked through, about 1 minute more. Toss the arugula and the remaining basil into the pasta. Add more pasta water as necessary to keep the pasta moist and continue tossing until the arugula is wilted, about 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately.