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~ Easy Linguine and Shrimp w/Tomato-Cream Sauce ~

IMG_4903 2Easy should never be a compromise.  It should simply be:  easy.  When you take the first taste or bite, it shouldn't be a dead giveaway that you didn't slave behind your stove all afternoon.  This luscious pasta dish is a prime example.  In my food world, I don't think anyone appreciates a great scratch-made marinara sauce more than I do, but, truth told, if one adds a bit of cream to store-bought, it turns into a decadent super-quick-to-make tomato-cream pasta sauce.  If you're the family cook, you'd be lying if you couldn't admit:   all of us home cooks love a great shortcut.

IMG_4897 2Because all of us cooks love a good shortcut (or two):

IMG_4889For the pasta:

8-9  ounces fresh linguine pasta, it must be fresh pasta not dried

12  ounces large shrimp (28-30 shrimp), peeled, deveined, tails on or off, your choice

2  teaspoons salt, for seasoning pasta water

6  tablespoons salted butter, cut into cubes

3/4  teaspoon garlic powder

1/2  teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/4  teaspoon sea salt

For the tomato-cream sauce:

3/4  cup marinara sauce

1/2  cup heavy or whipping cream

For the garnish:

1  tablespoon finely-grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

6a0120a8551282970b0263e98ad03e200b 6a0120a8551282970b0263e98ad03e200b 6a0120a8551282970b0263e98ad03e200b 6a0120a8551282970b0263e98ad03e200b~Step 1.  To prepare the tomato-cream sauce, place marinara in a 1-quart saucepan.  Add and stir in the cream.  Over medium-low heat, stirring almost constantly, heat until sauce is steaming. Remove from heat, cover, and,  aside while preparing the pasta as directed below.

IMG_4817 IMG_4817 IMG_4817 IMG_4817 IMG_4817~Step 2.  In a shallow 3 1/2-quart enameled cast-iron casserole or 3 1/2-quart chef's pan w/straight, deep sides, place 2-quarts of water and the 2-teaspoons of salt.  Bring to a boil over high heat.  Add all of the fresh pasta and all of the shrimp all at once.  Adjust heat to a steady simmer and continue to cook until pasta is al dente, about 3-3 1/2 minutes -- the shrimp will cook perfectly in this same amount of time, which is why fresh pasta (not dried pasta) must be used to cook this dish.  Drain pasta and shrimp into a colander.  Do not rinse the pasta.

IMG_4836 IMG_4836 IMG_4892 IMG_4892~Step 3.  Working as quickly as possible, return still hot skillet to still hot stovetop.  Add the butter pieces and spices:  the garlic powder, red pepper flakes and salt.  Return the still steaming hot pasta and shrimp to skillet.  Using two large spoons or two large forks, toss until the pasta and shrimp are enrobed in a spicy butter mixture.  Add the warm tomato-cream sauce.   Toss again. Cover the skillet and allow to rest about 1 minute, to give the pasta time to soak up any excess sauce.  Remove the lid and give the mixture another thorough toss.  Portion into 2-4 pasta bowls and serve each portion immediately, garnished with a light sprinkling of Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Try my One-Skillet Creamy Parmesan Linguine & Shrimp too:

IMG_4853Easy Linguine and Shrimp w/Tomato-Cream Sauce:  Recipe yields 2 large or 4 smaller servings.

Special Equipment List: cutting board; paring knife; microplane grater; 1-quart saucepan w/lid; spoon; 3 1/2-quart shallow, wide-bottomed enameled cast-iron casserole or 3 1/2-quart chef's pan w/straight, deep sides & lid; colander; two large forks or two large spoons

IMG_4586Cook's Note:  The world is full of pasta-bilities.  Our modern marketplaces have supplied all of our demands with hundreds of shapes, sizes, and colors of dried and fresh pasta.  I suppose it is because pasta is relatively quick to cook that many cooks impulsively try to create their own versions of well-known pasta dishes having little knowledge of the tried-and-true principles and classic recipe techniques these recipes require. To learn more, read my post ~ Pasta - Choose, Portion, Cook, Sauce, Toss & Serve ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2022)


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