This year, Valentine's Day falls on a Tuesday. If you plan to stay home and cook, I'd imagine that you're looking for a quick and easy meal, but still something that's a little more special than your typical Tuesday night dinner. One that allows you to spend some QT with your honey, and one that doesn't take hours of intense preparation. I've got you covered. This pasta dish comes together in the amount of time it takes to cook the noodles. It is quick and easy, uses few ingredients (most of which I bet you already have on hand), yet it seems fancy. Like something you might order at a cute little bistro.
You start out by quickly sauteing some shallots, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a little butter. The shrimp is then added, and since it cooks quite quickly, you basically begin building the sauce immediately. White wine and lemon juice are reduced, then you mix in the mascarpone (yum), a little reserved pasta water, and the pasta itself. Let it all meld, then give the whole thing a big dose of citrus with some lemon zest. And then you're done. Seriously. Less than 20 minutes. A creamy, garlicky, citrusy shrimp and pasta dish. Happy Valentine's Day!
Lemon-Garlic Linguine with Mascarpone and Shrimp
adapted from Fine Cooking
- kosher salt
- 8 oz dried linguine
- 1 1/2 tsp lemon zest
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbs butter
- 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced into rings
- 1/8 to 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
- 2 Tbs minced fresh chives
- lemon slices, for serving
Meanwhile, pat the shrimp dry and toss with half the lemon zest, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.
In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, melt the butter until the foaming subsides. Add the shallot, garlic, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring continuously, until the garlic is just turning brown, about 1 minute. Add the shrimp and cook about 90 seconds on one side. Turn the shrimp, reduce the heat to medium, and add the white wine and half the lemon juice.
Bring to a boil and cook about 1 minute. Add the mascarpone, reserved pasta water, and linguine, and toss to coat. Cook an addtional 1-2 minutes, or until the pasta is well coated and the sauce has thickened. Mix in the remaining lemon zest and juice, and the chives. Season with additional salt and pepper if necessary, and serve immediately with lemon slices.