Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Creamy Tomato and Prawn Pasta
Hubby bought a small cookbook for me. He knows our family loves to eat shrimps and prawns. This small cookbook is entirely about prawns, containing about 50 recipes. It is a part of the Periplus Mini-Cookbook series published in Singapore.
I know prawns and shrimps are expensive in many countries. I suppose I am blessed to be living in this country with 7,100 plus islands, depending whether it is high tide or low tide. ( I know, this is an old joke!) A variety of seafood is always available and at reasonable prices, too. A kilo of fresh shrimps would cost around 300 to 400 pesos (that's around U.S. $ 6 to $ 8.50). I know this price may be considered reasonable in first world countries. But here in the Philippines, where the average daily income of most working people, is also $ 6 to $ 8.50 a day, this is considered an expensive food, as well. I usually do not serve shrimps or prawns as a main entree. I usually serve it combined with other seafood, or as additional garnishing and flavor to rice or pasta dishes such as this. Except of course, on special occasions like Daughter's birthday. :)
Here is a delicious pasta recipe from the mini cookbook. Though I did some tweaks as usual, like, I added onions and bell peppers. I also added the amount of wine and cream, because the kids prefer more sauce in their pasta. I also let the white wine boil for a while. I added the cream just before turning off the heat as I do not want the cream to curdle.
400 gms fettuccine, cooked according to package directions
2 T olive oil
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
350 gms medium-sized prawns, shelled, deveined
500 gms tomatoes, seeded, diced
1 onion, chopped
2 pcs bell pepper, cubed
a handful of fresh basil, snipped
200 ml dry white wine
1/2 C all-purpose cream
salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat the oil and garlic in a cooking pan. When the garlic is fragrant, add in the prawns. Cook, stirring frequently until shrimps turn pink and are thoroughly cooked. Remove the prawns from the pan, leaving the drippings.
2. Add the tomatoes to the pan. Cook in low heat around 3 to 5 minutes until tomatoes are soft and juices come out. Turn up the heat to high, and add the white wine. Let boil for a while to let the alcohol evaporate.
3. Add in the bell pepper, onions, and basil. Stir for a while to let all the flavors mix. Add in the cream. Mix for a while and turn off the heat. Adjust seasonings to taste.
4. You can serve the pasta in individual serving platters topped with the sauce and prawns, or like me, throw in the noodles into the warm creamy sauce and toss the pasta with the sauce. This makes the "mixing" easier. And less messy on the table when you are serving pasta to the kids. :)
This is a creamy, flavorful, yummy pasta dish, best served warm. Other seafood or meat can be substituted for the topping. The sauce recipe is a keeper. I think this will be a regular mainstay in this kitchen :)
Before I end, I simply want to show you these fabulously healthy sweet basil plants, gifts from the President and First Lady of our Couples@Work fellowship. It must be the soil or seeds they used. These twin plants are small yet, the leaves they produce are quite large. I have harvested several times already and the plants just keep producing more leaves for me to harvest! ( Sorry, I think I took this picture after harvest so you could not see their true bounty.) The basil leaves I used for this pasta dish are from these plants. Thank you so much my dear friends! I always remember you when I harvest these fragrant leaves!
Sharing this delicious find with the Presto Pasta Nights Community headed and hosted by Ruth of Once Upon A Feast.
To see last week's array of delicious pasta dishes, please check out the wonderful round-up done in Italy by Judith of the Think on It.