Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Pasta with Shrimp, Scallops and Fennel
For some reason, cooking seafood is scary to me. There seems to be a large margin of error. Under-cooked and it's poison; over-cooked and it's rubbery. Since I started following the four-minutes-per-inch rule for fish, I've gotten pretty good at grilling fillets. But little seafood, like shrimp and clams and scallops? Still scary.
After a somewhat decadent weekend of dining out, a simple seafood supper was calling out to me, though. Peter and I walked over to Whole Foods (a very rare event, though it's just around the corner). Their seafood counter is so fancy and nice! It wasn't that expensive, either. We decided to get a 1/3 pound each of fresh shrimp, cute little scallops and some already prepared clams.
At home, Peter peeled and de-veined the shrimp. He put the shells in a pot of water and let them simmer until the water was half gone (about an hour). After the pasta water was boiling, he started to saute garlic, long strips of fennel and the chopped clams. After a couple minutes, he added a big splash of wine, the shrimp stock, a pile of chopped parsley, tarragon and mint, the shrimp and scallops, and a big squeeze of lemon.
The pasta was drained (that's corn pasta, by the way, and it's delicious!) and tossed into the pan with all the seafood for a final, boozey swim. A few more herbs went on top, along with a healthy sprinkle of salt. Oh my, it was good! And since Peter was doing the cooking, it wasn't scary in the least :)
What foods (inexplicable) scare you to cook? My friend Sarah over at Yahoo! Shine hosts a cute supper club, and the challenge for March was to cook a dish that scared you. Great idea, right? I think it's so interesting to learn what one person is afraid to tackle, and what others will whip up effortlessly!