Very Light Shrimp Pasta with Peas and Greens
This quick pasta dinner is easy, and wonderfully fresh tasting. It's a great reminder that keeping a bag of frozen shrimp in the freezer is a really good idea- you can turn out an impressive dish in no time.
¼ lb. dry penne pasta
½ - 1 c. fresh shelled peas (or frozen), or substitute with snap peas
2 tsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. finely minced green onion (or other mild onion)
1 small clove garlic, minced or pressed
Salt and pepper
¼-½ lb. medium shrimp (frozen or not, cooked or not- whatever you have/choose; thaw if using frozen, and devein if nec.)
2 c. ribbon-cut or rough-chopped greens such as spinach, chard, beet greens
¼+ c. snipped fresh basil
½ tsp. lemon juice
Shredded or grated parmesan, optional
Cook the pasta al dente, according to package directions. If you’re using frozen peas, put them into a sieve and then dunk into the boiling pasta water for 15-30 seconds just before draining the pasta; remove and set aside to drain.
Also before draining the pasta, use a handled cup to scoop out about ½ c. of the pasta water and set aside. *Make a “note to self” for the future--- this is a good tip when making all sorts of pasta dishes.
Meanwhile, saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil until soft and aromatic. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
If your shrimp is uncooked: add and saute them with the onion and garlic until done (pink).
Add peas, stir to warm, and set pan aside.
If your shrimp is already cooked: add to the saute pan along with the peas at the last minute, to warm them.
In the empty pasta pot, add ¼ c. pasta water and bring to a low simmer. Add the greens and cover the pot. Allow to steam 1-2 minutes on very low heat until wilted. Add 1-2 Tbsp. more pasta water if needed, then add the basil and lemon juice; season lightly with salt and pepper.
Toss everything together in pasta pot and serve. Sprinkle with Parmesan, if using.
Recipe created or adapted by Liz Talley, Urban Graze
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