Saturday, April 10, 2010

Linguine with Shrimp, Lemon, and Garlic

I have a goal of trying one new recipe a week, at least. This week I have THREE planned- two meals and one dessert :)

Here is the first recipe of the week. I have lifted this from my The Best Light Recipe cookbook, from the editors of Cook's Illustrated, one of the best cooking sources I know. A recipe from these people is almost guaranteed to be great or foolproof. I started subscribing to the magazine years ago, let the subscription go, and just recently have found my way back to it. I'm so glad. My sister gave me two of their great cookbooks for my birthday one year, the other cookbook is Baking Illustrated. I really need to make more from these cookbooks! And I just realized I have a third cookbook, The Best 30 Minute Recipe. I'm a lucky girl! This makes me more determined to use these cookbooks.

I wasn't able to find the recipe online so I typed it out below. There is no stolen online recipe. This is a LIGHT recipe.

Linguine with Shrimp, Lemon, and Garlic

1 medium onion, minced
1 tsp olive oil
8 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 c. low-sodium chicken broth
2- 8 oz. bottles clam juice
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tsp minced fresh thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
2 T cornstarch
2 T water
1/2 cup juice from 4 lemons
3 T light cream cheese
1 1/2 lbs extra large shrimp (21-25 per lb), peeled and deveined
1 lb linguine or spaghetti
3 T minced fresh parsley leaves
ground black pepper

1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in a large pot for the water.
2. Meanwhile, combine the onion, oil, and 1/2 tsp salt in a 12 inch nonstick skillet. Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broth, clam juice, pepper flakes, thyme, and bay leaf to the skillet, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a boil and cook until the sauce measures about 2 cups, 7 to 10 minutes.
3. Whisk the cornstarch and water together, then whisk it into the simmering sauce. Continue to simmer the sauce until it has thickened, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, whisk in the lemon juice and cream cheese until smooth. Add the shrimp, cover, and let sit off the heat until the shrimp are firm and no longer translucent in the center, 7 to 10 minutes. Discard the bay leaf, cover and set aside.
4. While the shrimp are cooking, stir 1 T salt and the pasta into the boiling water and cook, stirring often, until al dente. Reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water, drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Gently stir the shrimp-sauce mixture and parsley into the pasta. Cover and let sit off the heat until the shrimp are hot, about 1 minute. Add the reserved pasta cooking water as needed to loosen the sauce. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among six individual bowls and serve.

Recipe adapted from The Best Light Recipe

What did we think of the meal? My husband gave it the "really good" rating. When I cook he has a couple of things he says: "it's good" (so-so), "it's really good" (wow!), or "it's okay" (his nice way of saying that it isn't worth repeating). I agree that this was really good. I always can pick out a thing or two that I would do differently- for this one I might add just a bit more red pepper flakes or lemon juice. The shrimp were excellent. I don't know why I've never cooked with raw shrimp. Peeling and handling the shrimp really made me queasy, I felt like I was handling little aliens, but it was worth it in the end.

We will make this again!

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