July 31, 2011

Capellini with Shrimp and Creamy Tomato Sauce

cappellini 4
There has been a shocking lack of pasta on this blog. Truly, truly shocking. Plus there hasn’t been much seafood making the rounds either. Again, a rather deplorable state of affairs, considering that pasta and seafood are two incredibly delicious, incredibly versatile things.
As far as the pasta situation goes, I have no excuse, just that I seem to have forgotten about its existence. Blame it on DramaFever—I’ve been busy. Seafood, too, has definitely been a major part of my life, except for shrimp. For the shrimpy business I do have a simple explanation—I used to hate it.
garlic
Why are you hyperventilating?!
Breathe! Breathe!
I know that shrimp is a delightful food. Disliking it was merely a phase in my life over the past year or so. That sort of stuff happens when you get a mouthful of overcooked, rubbery shrimp from a poorly-crafted chain restaurant—it leaves you scarred. My point is this: I have begun to overcome my recent aversion to this tiny wonder of the sea and have started to rediscover its many merits.
shrimp
Actually, there are a lot of things that I’m rediscovering lately. Due to some stint of temporary hysteria, I didn’t like Nutella.
This is your current expression, right?
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I know, I know. I’m pretty ashamed of it myself. Last night—mainly because my face wanted food—I ventured to grab a spoonful of Nutella and I was instantly reinstituated into the Nutella fan club. How did I ever think that a luscious, creamy spread of hazelnuts and chocolate could be boring?
Speaking of which, if any of you guys have a favorite Nutella-filled recipe, I’d love it if you’d let me know about it in the comments.
cream
So you see, this weekend has been quite the rollercoaster ride of emotions. However, before I continue on to ramble about my geeky hot sauce tastings (Cholula, sriracha, and gochujang—how to pick a favorite?), let’s steer things back to the conversation at hand. This pasta—a combination of thin, sleek angel hair noodles, pan-seared shrimp, and a creamy tomato sauce—is pretty amazing stuff.
lemon
Besides the speed and ease of preparation, what really shines about this dish is its freshness and its classic flavors. Cooked for only a brief amount of time, the shrimp retains a lovely bit of softness and creaminess that blends beautifully with the rich tomato sauce. In my case, since I only had crushed tomatoes instead of diced, the sauce was even smoother and there was more of a focus solely on the shrimp. However, even though it was abundantly yummy this way, I can see how it would be even better with diced tomatoes dotting the plate.
pasta
Shrimp and tomatoes aside, there’s also the bright zing of lemon and the sweetness of white wine (which I used instead of vermouth). If herb-y complexity is the name of your game, you can also toss in some dried oregano or chopped fresh basil, either of which would only serve to amp up the aromatics and make this rustic dish all the tastier.
cappellini 1
Any way you look at it, this simple plate of pasta is a great go-to for a special, delicious, everyday dinner.
Grab the recipe over at Gourmet.

15 comments:

  1. You have made up for the lack of pasta and seafood! Fantastic! Looks amazing and great photos!

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  2. Just wondering, did you edit the original recipe at all? IMHO yours looks tastier than the Gourmet version.

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  3. There is something hugely tempting about a bundle of saucy spaghetti on a fork, isn't there? It always makes me think of Lady and the Tramp & their spaghetti meatballs. When I was a kid, I thought it looked like the most delicious thing in the world. And yours is just even better, because it has shrimp! I love that picture of them sitting snugly in the pan.

    I'm a recent convert to Nutella too. I used to find it too sickly, and now I like it on pancakes and baked into things. Not toast though. No way.
    Here are a couple of amazing looking nutella recipes. Mmm.

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  4. Koci, I laughed 5 minutes seeing that clip :)) Oh my goodness, you don't know what you're missing. aw, well, more Nutella for me!

    The pasta dish sounds delicious, love your photos!

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  5. I don't know if you're a peanut butter fan, but peanut butter + nutella + puff pastry = DELICIOUS. And easy! I definitely recommend it.

    As for the pasta...I am a pasta freak and not a week goes by where I don't try a new pasta recipe. This one looks great!

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  6. omg love the clip!! love the pasta dish..and the pics,,,fab!!

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  7. This. Looks. Delicious!

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  8. This looks aammmaaazzzzinng!!
    Oh my gosh, I am drooling.
    And glad you rediscovered nutella. It is pretty amazing. I can eat it by the spoonfuls. Gross but true.

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  9. I must admit I also don't cook with seafood that often - something about it just intimidates me. Heaven knows why.

    PS: on the subject of Nutella, I recently found this recipe for homemade Nutella -- http://www.beyondtheplate.net/recipes/the-season-for-giving/

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  10. @Maris: Thanks! It was great to have some yummy pasta and seafood back in rotation.

    @Anonymous: Yes, I did. Basically, I just used crushed tomatoes instead of diced, left out the oregano (because I didn't have any on hand), and used white wine instead of vermouth (again because I didn't have any of the latter). Even though half of these substitutions were brought about by my own aversion to grocery shopping, I'm so glad that you like it! :D Thanks!

    @Suzler: This is true. Watching "Lady and the Tramp" always makes me suddenly want a huge plate of spaghetti. :D And thanks for the Nutella links! That ice cream looks dangerously drool-worthy.

    @Roxana: hehehe Yay! Someone else gets my gif-laden sense of humor!

    @Mandy: Ooooooh. That sounds fantastic!

    @sweet life-bonnie: hehehe Thanks!

    @Becky: Thank you!

    @Maria Diana: Glad you like it! :D

    @Kristen: Thanks! That is so true--one of my favorite ways to enjoy (read: inhale) Nutella is just by the spoonful. :D

    @Marisa: I know what you mean. A lot of times--at least for me--I get worried about overcooking it. But still, shrimp is a great starter dish for reluctant seafood cooks. Plus it's so quick to throw together! :D

    Homemade Nutella you say?! That sounds amazing!

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  11. i love creamy tomato sauce, and in my opinion, there is no pasta that disappoints....truly my favorite comfort food!!! As for the shrimp, I feel you on that one, I had some less than mediocre shrimp a few years ago and ever since it just doesn't grab me. But I am slowly getting back on board LOL

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  12. Re Nutella - Spread it on a perfectly ripe banana. That's it. Just Nutella on a banana. If you want to be fancy and industrious about it you can dip banana chunks in Nutella and freeze them on wax paper, that's a nice cool treat.

    If you can get good tortillas (soft ones that are not salty or rubbery, La Banderita is a pretty good brand if you can find it), or make them homemade, Nutella is really, really good spread on warm flour tortillas. And there's always crepes. Nutella on warm crepes, with fruit on the side, maybe a dollop of sweetened whipped cream on top.

    Currently, I'm trying to figure out a way to mix it into Rice Krispies treats without diluting the flavor. Best I've come up with so far is to frost them with it.

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  13. Can't wait to make this recipe! I found a similar recipe at Epicurious but yours looks MUCH more delicious!! I am glad that you said you used a white wine in place of the vermouth as that is what I had planned to do and am happy it turned out well!

    As for Nutella, I can take it or leave it! But there is one way to make it that is just sublime! Take won ton wrappers and put a small dollop of Nutella in the center of each wrapper. Fold the wrapper from one corner over onto the opposite corner so as to make a triangle. Place a bit of water along the edge and seal the won tons. Next, heat up some vegetable oil in a frying pan and add the won ton/Nutella packages. Fry until golden brown and crispy. Blot excess oil on a paper towel and the enjoy!! Let cool a bit as well as the Nutella gets hot and melty and can feel like lava!!

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    Replies
    1. What a cool Nutella idea! I'll have to try that out. It sounds yummy!

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