This one is a fantastic blend of garlicky shrimp with a bit of kick, flavorful tomatoes, and a hit of cream. Did I forget to mention cheese? Oh yeah, there’s some of that too. Seriously, I couldn’t go wrong last night.
See, I really just winged it. In the morning I opened the door to the freezer and shrimp literally fell out and hit me on the foot; I figured if for no reason other then my own safety, I was making something with shrimp for dinner. Then, I just wandered around the kitchen and pantry, making a mental note of what I had on hand that I could use. A can of diced tomatoes, some heavy cream, lots of spices, lemon, parmesan cheese (and not the fancy kind, just the Kraft kind, my fall back go-to), minced garlic, white wine, and some penne pasta. Then I left the kitchen and forgot about it for a few hours. I had to let the shrimp thaw before I could de-shell them (why I do this to myself I don’t know. I hate taking the shells off, but when I’m in the grocery store I always rationalize that the 3 dollars I save could buy powdered donuts, and they do).
First off, put the shrimp in a bowl and mix up with 3 teaspoons of the garlic, ½ tablespoons of the olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, cayenne pepper, Franks red hot sauce, lemon juice, and oregano. Cover and throw this in the fridge for an hour.
In another small bowl, mix together the diced tomatoes (I used no salt added, so keep that in mind), 1 tablespoon of garlic, basil, Italian seasoning, salt (about a teaspoon), and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Looks great, now cover and throw in the fridge for an hour.
When you’re ready to start cooking, put 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet and melt over medium-high heat. Get your penne pasta cooking in some boiling water now too.
When the butter is melted, add the heavy cream and white wine. Let it boil until it just starts to thicken up a little bit, about 5 minutes.
Add ⅔ cup of Parmesan cheese.
You want to drain your pasta as soon as it hits al denté, or a moment before. It will finish cooking in the sauce. It tastes better if you have an adorable pink colander to drain it in too. Seriously.
Add the tomatoes to the cream mixture.
Give it a good stir.
Now, add the pasta to the sauce.
Stir it in, and let it cook for about 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened up.
Don’t forget to season with some pepper. Taste before you do this, I didn’t think it needed any salt as there’s plenty with the tomatoes, but suit it to your tastes.
Want to know what makes it hard to get any cooking done? Looking over to the family room and seeing this. How adorable are my kids? And how much does Oliver love his little sister! Anna, it’s not just love on her part, it’s pure worship.
Tickle time. These two kill me. We do have cushions for that couch, you just jump higher when they’re all over the floor.
Dragging myself back to dinner. Melt another 2 tablespoons of butter in a second skillet.
Toss in the shrimp, along with all the oil / garlic that they were marinating in. Fry these puppies up until they’re just pink. Mine were smaller so they only took a couple of minutes, just be sure to toss them frequently while they’re cooking. Did I mention I have a shrimp allergy. Yeah, I have a shrimp allergy, but I LOVE shrimp. I’ve found that the smaller the shrimp, the less sick I am after eating them, so use whatever size you like.
Here’s what the pasta will look like when the sauce has reached the perfect, thick consistency. It’ll coat the pasta inside and out. I’m hungry again looking at this, and we’re not even done yet. This picture reminds me of a dream sequence in a movie too, thanks to the steam coming off the pasta and the foggy look it gives over by the spoon. That isn’t helping with the desire to eat this again right now either.
Pour the pasta into a large oven safe dish.
Sprinkle some more Parmesan cheese over the now cooked shrimp, about 2 tablespoons worth, then give them a toss to coat.
Pour the shrimp evenly over the pasta.
Then top with some grated mozzarella cheese.
Throw it under the broiler for about 2 minutes, until the cheese is melted and lightly browned. Watch it carefully; food under the broiler goes from perfect to burnt very quickly.
Incredibly delicious! Bo and I both had seconds, and Oliver ate a ton too. After every mouthful he told me “Mmmmmm, yummy Mommy!”. You just can’t get better then that in this house!
Alright, closer, if you insist.
Here’s your printable: