Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Creamy Crawfish Pasta to the Rescue!

While working long hours in my office this week I could feel my kitchen "creativity meter" drops to zero. I even enlisted Michael's help cooking! Don't get me wrong, he can rustle up a mean quesadilla ...but woman cannot live on tortillas alone! I had to find something else for dinner! So I went scrounging for something easy but satisfying and, of course, delicious when I spotted crawfish in the freezer. I was planning to use it in gumbo, but who has okra at this time of year? I remembered seeing a great recipe using frozen crawfish from "in the kitchn" and here it is! Easy, satisfying and high enough on the yummy rating scale to serve to guests. Mission accomplished! Enjoy!

Creamy Crawfish Pasta
from "in the kitchn"
Serves 6 - 8

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 green bell pepper, diced small (I used sweet red pepper, it was great)
1 onion, diced small
2 stalks celery, diced small
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 heaping teaspoon tomato paste
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used a dry Savignon Blanc AND served it with the meal)
1 pound frozen cooked crawfish tails, thawed
1 cup half and half or heavy cream
1 teaspoon Creole seasoning
Red pepper flakes, to taste
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
16 ounces penne pasta, cooked according to package directions
Chopped parsley, for serving

In a large Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Add the bell peppers, onions, and celery, and sauté until tender, about 7-8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Stir in the flour until the vegetables are well-coated and no white clumps remain. Stir in the tomato paste until completely combined.

Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the wine and crawfish to the Dutch oven; let the wine simmer out for a couple of minutes. Pour in the heavy cream. Add the creole seasoning, a generous pinch of red pepper flakes, 1 teaspoon salt, and freshly ground pepper. Cook the sauce at a gentle boil until it is thickened and coats the back of the spoon, about 5 - 10 minutes. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Fold the cooked penne into the crawfish sauce. Stir in a handful of chopped parsley. Serve the crawfish pasta with additional red pepper flakes, hot sauce, freshly grated Parmesan, and slices of toasted garlic bread.

The freshly grated Parmesan is a must, as it adds just enough saltiness. I kept hearing yummy sounds emanating from Michael's side of the room...think he was a tad tired of quesadilla as well...but thanks honey for cooking!!


Maria Rose said...

While there are vegan alternatives to aquatic species I am pretty creeped out by the idea and haven't tried them. I have been craving some pasta though!

Victoria said...

Well, the sauce would still be wonderful on pasta, maybe using wild mushrooms?

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