I love pasta! A packet of spaghetti, macaroni, fettuccine and so on is one of the most useful items to have stocked up at home. I don’t profess to be any sort of pasta guru, but I like the ones I end up cooking. To me, there’s two categories of hot pasta dishes. The one that you boil simply and then ladle over a sauce that’s been cooking for hours, and the one that you stir into the pan with the ingredients, which typically takes altogether about 15 minutes to cook. Either way, it always tastes great and is pretty easy to make.
This Seafood Linguine belongs to the latter category and fuses together the classic flavour combination of seafood, garlic and chilli. If your ingredients are fresh, you can do no wrong.
- 1 packet of linguine
- 500 grams prawn
- 500 grams scallops
- Fresh red chilli, the spicier the better
- Half bulb garlic
- Olive oil
- Any white wine
- Flat leaf parsley, chopped
- Cracked sea salt
- Cracked black pepper
1. Prepare the seafood first. I prefer buying cooked prawns from supermarkets. They tend to be boiled when caught so I find that these are typically the freshest. And it reduces my cooking time too. Deshell, devein and set aside. You can use raw prawns if you prefer. I also used scallops in this dish. Dry them properly, season with salt and pepper, and set aside too. You can use any seafood you like – mussels, clams, calamari. I would avoid using most fish as they tend to break up in the dish.
2. Peel the garlic and slice. I prefer this to mincing. Crushing won’t do as they are too chunky otherwise. Chop up the chilli. Remove seeds if you are spice-averse. Use only red ones.
3. Boil the pasta in salted water according to instructions. Once al dente, drain and coat with some olive oil to avoid sticking. Save about 500ml of the pasta water. I learned this while watching a Lydia Bastianich TV program. As there is starch in the pasta liquid, it’s great to add to the dish if you want some sauce. Unlike adding water (that turns the dish into a rather sloppy and unattractive mess), pasta liquid gives you thick glossy gravy!
4. Heat sufficient olive oil in a pan. The amount you use depends on how much/little you are against having oil in your diet. I would say perhaps 3 tablespoons. When the oil is hot, throw in garlic and chilli. Stay away from the initial fumes, or get ready to sneeze. As the ingredients brown and aromatise (be alert here as the garlic can turn from a perfect gold to burnt within split seconds) place scallops gently one at a time, careful to give them space so that they caramelise rather than boil. Flip to other side in about 2 minutes. After 1 minute, throw in prawns. Season with salt and pepper, and toss.
5. Give the pan a splash or two of white wine. When contents of pan simmer, add pasta from step 3. Add a handful of chopped parsley, and a ladle or two of the reserved pasta liquid (you need to decide here if you want a dry or wet dish).
6. Quickly stir the contents of the pan. Serve, drizzle with some more olive oil and slurp away!