Here is an easy summertime meal made with shrimp from the freezer, arugula from the garden, parmesan from the fridge, and penne pasta from the pantry. You could use any other pasta shape you like for this recipe, I just happened to have penne on hand.
- 1 lb. dried penne pasta (or your favorite pasta – spaghetti, fusilli; rigatoni, or whatever)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 large or 2 small shallots, peeled and minced
- 4-5 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 1/4 tsp. red-chili flakes (optional)
- 3/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined. (I also like to slice the shrimp in half, horizontally. When they cook they sort of turn into spirals.)
- A couple of handfuls of fresh arugula
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (shaved)
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water, per package directions, until just al dente. Drain the pasta and set aside.
- In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and saute for a couple of minutes, until translucent.
- Add the red-chili flakes and white wine and bring to a simmer, cooking until the liquid reduces by about half — approximately five minutes.
- Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook until just pink, a couple of minutes.
- Put the pasta back into the large cooking pot, along with the shrimp and shallot mixture and the arugula. Toss to blend well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve the pasta garnished with pine nuts and shaved pieces of Parmigiano-Reggiano.
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Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.