Friday, March 1, 2013

Pasta with Seafood Tomato Sauce

We have been eating very healthy lately and even though this recipe isn't bad for you, it isn't the type of food we have been eating.  It included a freshly made tomato sauce with shrimp, mussels, and clams all tossed with some simply cooked pasta.  The final touch was a sprinkling of fresh basil.  This dish turned out very well but we had a problem with the clams we bought...very few of them really opened which made them impossible to eat.  The shrimp and mussels in this dish were spectacular and I will be looking forward to trying it again with better clams.

I started our dinner with a Caesar Salad and will share that recipe soon.

Pasta with Seafood Marinara Sauce
Makes 2 servings

Marinara Sauce
 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup Spanish onion, minced
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
6 cups Roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
1/4 cup fresh basil chiffonade
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Peel the tomatoes using a vegetable peeler.  Remove the seeds by cutting the fruit in half.  Gently squeeze to remove the seeds, but not all the juice.  Now dice the tomatoes

MInce a Spanish onion to provide one cup. Be sure to cut the onion into small pieces since the cooking time is so brief.  Peel and finely mince the garlic.  The more garlic surface that is exposed to the heat, the more oil and flavor will be emitted.

Heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat in a saute pan.  The oil will be hot enough when it begins to shimmer.  Add the minced onion and saute over a medium heat until transparent.  Don't burn the onions or they'll impart a bitter taste.

Add the minced garlic to the cooked onions.  Cook just until you can smell the garlic.  This indicates the raw garlic taste is gone.  Add the tomatoes and cook over a medium heat until they blend and turn from bright red to a softer red - about 20 minutes.

Remove from heat and add the fresh cut basil that has been cut into thin strips.  Serve it right away or refrigerate for 1 day.

Pasta with Seafood Marinara Sauce
Makes 2 servings

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons white wine
1 1/2 cups marinara sauce (from above)
8 mussels, cleaned in the shell
8 clams, cleaned in the shell
4 ounces of linguine, cooked according to package direction
2 tablespoons fresh basil chiffonade

In a saute pan with a tight fitting lid, saute shrimp in olive oil just until pink - about a minute on each side.  Now deglaze the pan with 2 tablespoons of white wine.  This adds flavor to the shrimp and loosens flavorful bits of shrimp from the pan bottom.  After removing the shrimp, add the marinara sauce to the deglazed pan.  Heat the marinara, then add the cleaned mussels and clams. 

Cover the pan tightly and cook about 5 minutes or just until the shells open.  Discard any shells that refuse to open.  Add the shrimp to the clams and mussels, along with the cooked pasta.  Heat just until the shrimp are warm.  Serve with a garnish of fresh basil.

Slightly adapted from Cuisine at Home, Issue 1 Jan/Feb 1997

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