Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Linguine with Grilled Shrimp and Arugula-Parsley Pesto

As I was walking out of Whole Foods, this recipe card caught my eye. It was very simple and easy to make, I hope you enjoy as much as Mr. Max and I did!

Grocery List:
3 cloves garlic (additional 2 if wanted for shrimp grill mix)
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
1 cup packed arugula leaves (I bought the bunch of fresh leaves for $1.99)
1 cup packed parsley leaves (I got flat Italian parsley, rather than curly parsley, 1 bunch of fresh leaves, $1.99)
6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, with additional as needed for grilling
2 tablespoons reduced-fat ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Ground black pepper to taste
1 pound dried whole-wheat linguine
1/2 pound of peeled and deveined medium to large sized shrimp
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon of dried or fresh basil

Additional Needs:
Large pot
Medium size saucepan
mixing bowl
food processor - or cutting board with good knife

First let's start by making the pesto. You will put your garlic, walnuts, arugula, parsley and olive oil in the bowl of the food processor, pulsing until smooth. I have a mini-processor so if you have a small one, this may take two rounds of processing to get the required amounts. Next, transfer into a large mixing bowl and stir in the ricotta, the parmesan and black pepper, then set aside.

To cook the linguine, bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the pasta noodles. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft - or al dente. Drain, but reserve some of the cooking water. Stir 1 tablespoon of the cooking water into the pesto. Add the pasta to your pesto, mix well and cover to keep warm.

As mentioned in the previous pork chop post, I have a love for my griddle - which I actually affectionately refer to as my Griddler. Whatever grilling surface you use, add a bit of olive oil to the surface and set to medium heat. I digressed from the recipe a bit to make the shrimp - creating a simple garlic oil with some dried basil from my spice cabinet.

Use an additional clove of garlic (or two if you are a fan like myself), mince it up, add it to about 1/4 cup of olive oil, then the basil. Dip each shrimp in this sauce to coat. If you have skewers, this could be a fun time to use them! I, however, don't have those so I just laid all the shrimp on my little Griddler and let them cook.

Once the shrimp is grilled to your perfection, toss with the pasta and you are done!

This meal is only 330 calories per serving. I will admit to enjoying a basil-based pesto taste more, but this was a nice little change with a very fresh taste to it.

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