Thursday, July 24, 2008

Shrimp and Pasta in Creamy White Wine Sauce

I love to cook shrimp. Not only is it quick and simple, it's virtually fat-free (well, not in this sauce) so not much volume is lost when you cook it. It also yields dishes that look and taste impressive, but don't require a lot of work.

I usually use 51-60 count easy-peel deveined shrimp. It often goes on sale here for $3.49 a pound.

I found this recipe in a magazine called Gemma's Homestyle Italian Cooking. The original recipe called for Pernod liqueur and fennel leaves. Both have a licorice-like flavor that Shane doesn't like and I can only take in small measure. So it's no surprise I adapted the recipe to our tastes using white wine instead of liqueur and leaving the fennel out entirely.

Pasta and Shrimp in Creamy White Wine Sauce

1 pound dry pasta such as penne or spiral
1/4 cup butter
1/4 chopped onion
2 bay leaves
2 cups fish stock (I used Knorr fish bouillon cubes in water)
Pinch saffron*
1/2 cup half and half cream
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup roux** or enough to thicken sauce as desired
1 pound uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to label directions. Drain; keep warm.

In large skillet, cook onions and bay leaves in butter over medium-high heat until onions are tender.

Stir in fish stock and saffron. Let simmer 10 minutes or until saffron turns color and flavors the stock. Remove and discard bay leaves.

Stir in half and half, milk and wine. Simmer 2 minutes over medium heat.

Whisk in enough roux to thicken the sauce as desired.

Stir in shrimp.

Cook just until shrimp turn pink and are no longer translucent.

Stir in drained pasta and serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings.

* Saffron is expensive. I received mine as a gift from a friend who traveled to the Far East. If you don't have any and would rather not buy it, just leave it out.

**Roux is mixture of approximately 1 part butter with 2 parts flour, cooked over medium-high heat until a smooth paste forms. For this recipe, do not let the mixture brown. Use what you need to thicken the sauce, then refrigerate the rest for another use.

1 comment:

Donna said...

WoW!!! I'm LOVIN the pictures! Makes it Really easy to follow along!! Thanks Annie!!!hughugs