Prawn and Spinach Pasta
Being a home cook foodie is a tough job! It makes you think twice about complaining of the prices you pay at restaurants; considering that restaurants has an array of people making the dish you are eating! When cooking at home, you are faced with prepping and cooking everything yourself; this is extremely time consuming in the world we live in today. Thus, retail business has taken advantage of this and charge you a premium for convenience.
I don’t like to think of myself as a lazy cook, but it sometimes does help to pay for the convenience. Shellfish is one of those ingredients that takes a lot of time to prepare. Prior to making this dish, I always bought pre-cleaned pink prawns. The last time I bought them, I regretted the decision for the next 8 months as I suffered from haphazard allergic itchiness; it comes and goes all hours of the day and I don’t wish it upon anyone to experience. The allergic reaction was due to dirty seafood, mass produced food can only promise cleanliness to a certain degree, not to mention what harmful chemicals are used.
Since then I have only bought “raw frozen” prawns that requires me to clean and prepare myself and I had a sense of accomplishment too! (bonus for me) The best part of cleaning prawns yourself, you can use the head and shells to make broth for other dishes too. In this specific recipe, I cooked the pasta in a prawn broth. It may not have absorbed a heavy prawn flavour, but provided an amazing aroma to the dish.
To give a flavour boost, I recommend serving the pasta with olive oil infused with basil. You can easily prepare the olive oil with fresh basil in a separate glass bottle; you must let the oil settle for a week before use. The added benefit is versatility when infusing your own olive oil and you can drizzle it over salads for extra flavour.The best part of this type of pasta, is it separates itself from the conventional tomato or cream based pastas that we often order or make. I believe this pasta dish is great for summer without being too “hot” or heavy on the stomach.
500g Rummo Spaghetti No. 3 (Bought this from an Italian importer)
1kg Prawns, deshelled
300g Baby Spinach
6 cloves Garlic, minced
2tsps Himalayan Salt
3tsps Black Pepper, freshly grounded
1tsp Chilli Flakes
(you can add more if you prefer your food with extra spice or add chilli oil)
1 Lemon, juiced
½ cup Parsley, chopped
2 Bay leaves
Olive oil infused with basil
Cook the pasta in water/prawn broth (if using plain water, put salt, bay leaves and oil in the water) for 8 to 10 minutes.
Drain the pasta and keep ½ cup of pasta water on the side.
Heat the pot with avocado oil and add the garlic and chilli flakes to bast.
Shallow fry the prawns and cook for 2 minutes each side, adding ½ teaspoon of salt and oregano each side, and remove from pot.
Put the baby spinach and fry until cooked.
Add the pasta to the spinach, season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
Add half a cup of pasta water, toss the pasta and cook for 4 minutes.
Add the prawns and parsley to the pasta and cook for 2 minutes.
Take off the heat and serve the pasta in the cookware or dish into a serving dish.
Basil infused olive oil and shaved parmesan to serve.