Following on from the fresh pasta recipe a few days ago, I had to make a delicious, refreshing dish in order to justify the making of said pasta.
The beauty of being in Portugal, and so close to the coast, is the fresh seafood that’s (mostly) locally sourced, but also super affordable! Never in Hong Kong would I be able to get 20-odd fresh prawns for €7. The markets and ingredients available here always make it hard to leave and head back to limited options and small supermarkets. But I will enjoy everything I can while I am here.
So, I told my parents ages ago that I would make food every now and then specifically for the blog. They were more than happy to oblige, giving me access to the kitchen (so much counter space!) and were happy to be fed.
My family and I are not massively creamy pasta dish lovers. You all know I love my mac and cheese, but even that can get a bit much sometimes. I’ll have the occasional Carbonara, but only if I know it’s not going to be swimming in cream. Give me tomato- or olive oil- based sauces any day.
My parents don’t even eat that much pasta these days either, so I had to make sure I made something that was light and really highlighted the prawns and the fresh pasta. But, as a disclaimer, you don’t have to use fresh pasta. Dried, store-bought, pasta is fine. It’s the easiest option for most of us anyway (including me when I get back home).
Having never made this dish before, but bringing in different elements from similar dishes, I was hoping for the best. But, you just never know how it’s all going to come together until it’s done.
I have to say…. it was divine. I know, I know. Don’t blow your own trumpet. But my parents said it after the first bite. So, I have additional sources, not just my own thoughts and opinions.
This dish is great for the summer, as it’s so fresh and light. I highly recommend it as a quick and easy dinner for anyone that loves seafood and pasta.
I’ve caught the pasta bug now. I keep thinking of new pasta recipes I could try, from making my own pasta to making dishes that incorporate that pasta dough. Oh man, so many ideas. Now I need to either invest in a pasta roller or visit friends who have one (I know who you are), just to see if these ideas work.
Right, I’ll stop blabbering. Here’s the recipe for today.
20 medium sized fresh prawns
200 grams tagliatelle (or linguine)
2 cups (or large handfuls) fresh rocket, diced
1 red chili, diced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
4 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup white wine
1/2 lemon, juiced
- Cook dried pasta according to instructions. If using fresh pasta, put a pan of water on a high heat and bring to boil. The pasta will only need 1 minute in a boiling pan of water.
- Wash the prawns thoroughly, then remove heads and most of the shell, keeping the tail intact. If you want, put the heads and shells in a ziplock bag and freeze for stock making later.
- Remove the digestive tracts (black veins) from the prawns – these are usually along the back of the prawn, but can sometimes be found underneath as well. The prawns I used had both. You can remove the tracts by slicing a sharp knife along the back of the prawn and gently pulling out the vein. It’s easiest to use a kitchen towel to wipe your knife on while removing the tracts.
- Rinse the prawns again, to ensure no digestive tracts are left, then set aside.
- In a wok, or large frying pan, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over a high heat. Add the prawns, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 2 minutes on each side until pink. Transfer to a plate.
- In the same wok, over a medium heat, melt the rest of the butter along with the garlic. After 1 minute add the white wine, lemon juice and chili.
- Cook for an additional 2 minutes, then add the rocket and stir well. Allow to cook for a further 1 minute.
- Turn off the heat, then add the prawns and the pasta to the wok. Combine well and serve with a side salad.