Shrimp Scampi Florentine Pasta

IMG_0045 2

The classic Florentine preparation places the main ingredient on a bed of buttery spinach, topped with sauce and cheese and browned under the broiler. We’ve replicated the basic idea, giving you all those rich and cheesy flavors, but with less effort than a full-on Florentine. We’ve even improved it, with a bit of heat from the red pepper flakes. Tip: An easier way to mince parsley? Gather them all in one hand and lay on the cutting board. Use your knife in rocking motion to cut, then turn 90 degrees and repeat until the herbs are properly minced!

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS:

5  ounces spaghetti pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound 16-20 count shrimp, peeled and deviened
1 shallot, peeled and minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
5 ounces  baby spinach, roughly chopped
¼  bunch fresh flat leaf parsley, minced
2 teaspoons mirepoix base or vegetable
¼ cup light cream
1 ounce grated Parmesan cheese
Salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

Bring 3 1/2 cups water and 2 teaspoons salt to a boil in a medium pot. Once water is boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes. Reserve ¼ cup pasta cooking water. Drain pasta in a colander and set aside. While pasta boils, cook shrimp.

Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, until oil is shimmering. Working in batches if necessary, add shrimp to the skillet n and cook undisturbed until seared on one side, 1-2 minutes. Flip shrimp, and add shallot and garlic. Cook until aromatic, 30-60 seconds.

Lower heat to medium. Add the parsley and spinach to the skillet and stir occasionally until spinach is wilted. Add the shrimp and stir to cook until the shrimp is opaque and pink when it reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145ºF, 2-3 minutes. Stir in cream, Parmesan, half the pasta cooking water, mirepoix base, and pasta. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Once simmering, cook until sauce is slightly thickened, 2-3 minutes. If too dry, add additional pasta cooking water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.

Remove the skillet from the heat and season with salt and  crushed red pepper flakes, to taste.

To serve divide, the shrimp Florentine between two plates and garnish the pasta with parsley.

 Bon appétit!

Cook’s Notes:

Many chefs consider mirepoix to be the key ingredient for adding that extra umph to a dish. It’s the secret sauce; the essential ingredient; the reason your food tastes so good. Mirepoix plays an important role in flavoring soups, stews, casseroles, braised meats, and marinades.358 (1)

You can find mirepoix soup bases in the soup aisle of your local supermarket. If that is not the case you buy it online at speciality gourmet shops. Click here for the link.

To learn how to make your own mirepoix base, just click here for the link to a great teaching video.

Hello Friends!

All photographs and content, excepted where noted, are copyright protected. Please do not use these photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this photograph and all other contents, then we kindly ask that you link back to this site. We are eternally grateful and we appreciate your support of this blog.

Thank you so much!

 


Chicken Marsala (Pollo al Marsala)

IMG_0636 (2) Chicken Marsala.JPG

Marsala is an indigenous fortified wine frequently used in Sicilian cooking.  There are two varieties of Marsala – sweet and dry.  Sweet Marsala is savored as a desert wine and used mainly for making desserts.  Dry Marsala, which is less sweet, is enjoyed as an aperitif and used for making savory dishes.

Chicken Marsala is typically made with chicken breasts but it can also be made using the whole chicken or just the thighs and drumsticks.  This is a basic recipe with a variation in  using pancetta and  mushrooms. For those who like the layer of flavors,  the earthiness of the mushrooms and Marsala complement each other.  This dish is delicious served over spaghetti, noodles, or mashed potatoes.

 

Serves 4

Ingredients:
One 3-4 pound chicken, washed and cut into 8-10 pieces
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 large onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup diced pancetta
8 ounces sliced white or cremini mushrooms
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup dry Marsala
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon minced flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice

 

Directions:

Pat the chicken pieces dry with paper towels.

Heat the olive oil and half of the butter in a large, deep-skillet or Dutch oven over high heat.

Working in 2 batches, add half of the chicken pieces and brown on both sides, about 6 minutes.  Transfer the chicken to a platter and set aside.

Reduce heat to medium-high.  Add the onion, pancetta, and garlic to the skillet.  Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until onions become soft and translucent.  Add the mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly, sprinkle in the flour and stir until combined.

Stir in the Marsala, chicken stock, and parsley.  Add in the chicken pieces, cover with a lid, and simmer for approximately 40 minutes, until chicken is tender.

Transfer the chicken pieces to a serving platter.  Stir remaining butter and lemon juice into the sauce.

To serve, spoon sauce over the chicken.  Sprinkle with additional minced parsley if desired.

 

Hello Friends!

All photographs and content, excepted where noted, are copyright protected. Please do not use these photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this photograph and all other contents, then we kindly ask that you link back to this site. We are eternally grateful and we appreciate your support of this blog.

Thank you so much!


Pasta with Shrimp and Browned Butter

IMG_0042_Pasta with Shrimp and Browned butter.jpg

Flavor upon flavor is built into this dish by cooking dried pasta, made with egg—in a skillet, directly in the liquid that becomes the pasta sauce. The noodles’ delicate texture pairs perfectly with sweet, briny shrimp and the nuttiness of browned butter. Use larger-sized shrimp, large or extra-large, so they remain tender and plump. Crushed red pepper flakes and lemon juice brighten and balance the richness of this dish.

Adapted from
Milk Street Magazine, 2020

SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS:

6 tablespoons salted butter, divided
1½ pounds large or extra-large shrimp, peeled, deveined and patted dry
Kosher salt, taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
8 ounces dried tagliatelle or pappardelle pasta
4 scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
Juice of 2 lemons

DIRECTIONS:

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet.

Add shrimp and a bit of salt and pepper. Cook without stirring until browned on the bottom. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Brown remaining butter in the same skillet. Add 3 cups water, just a sprinkling of pepper flakes and salt and black pepper to taste, then simmer. Add pasta, cover and cook, until al dente. Uncover and reduce slightly.

Over low, stir in scallions and shrimp. Off heat, season with lemon juice, salt, pepper and pepper flakes.

COOK’S NOTES:

You can use cooked, frozen shrimp in this recipe, if that is what you have on hand in your freezer. Just thaw the shrimp in the refrigerator prior to cooking this dish add them to the skillet, over low heat, to prevent them from being over cooked.

Hello Friends!

All photographs and content, excepted where noted, are copyright protected. Please do not use these photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this photograph and all other contents, then we kindly ask that you link back to this site. We are eternally grateful and we appreciate your support of this blog.

Thank you so much!