Garlic Prawn Pasta

Although the weather has been cooling down a little as of late, flavours of a feisty summer are never unwelcome on the palate. Memories of a warm sunny day, maybe outdoors, a beautiful view are emblematic of a Sydney summer for me and when winter starts to knock on the door I get rather nostalgic for traditional summery food! Things like a berry tart, a raspberry granita or seafood pasta are all suited to warm weather but it doesn’t hurt to try out those warm-weather dishes as the summer wanes into the cooler months.

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A bit of lemon zest, chilli and fresh or cooked prawns or seafood makes this spaghetti dish exactly that. The memory of pleasant seaside lunches and picnics, spending time with family or friends is evoked through the flavours of this quite filling dinner. I chanced upon it in Donna Hay’s ‘Fast, Fresh and Simple’ cookbook, and this is my second time trying this out.

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Although I followed the specifications of the recipe for chilli flakes, it was still a little too hot for the likes of my tastebuds. Try using half a teaspoon instead of the full amount on the recipe.

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I suspect that while the recipe calls for parsley, fresh basil would prove a very delicious substitute. Spread whatever herbs you wish to evenly through the spaghetti for a well rounded and balanced flavour, and go easy on the pepper – the chilli flakes possess an  unpredictable kick. As with all seafood pastas, a white wine would complement this pasta very much.

Ingredients:

  • 200 g pasta/spaghetti (I used San Remo angel hair spaghetti)
  • 45 g butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cloves of sliced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon zest
  • a handful of prawns (the recipe says ’12 raw prawns, peeled and cleaned). I used cooked prawns from the supermarket which were quite small, so I used about 20
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup parsley (or basil), torn
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 8–10 minutes or until al dente. Drain and keep warm.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, heat a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the butter and oil and cook until the butter has melted.
  3. Add the garlic, chilli and zest and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the prawns and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until the prawns are tender.
  5. Add the pasta, juice, parsley, salt and pepper to the pan and toss to combine.
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