Cheryl’s Cuisine: March 2021

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

Being raised Catholic, Fridays in Lent meant tuna for lunch and pizza or tomato-sauced pasta for dinner. Today we have so many options for “meatless Fridays.”   

I’m always looking for new ideas for dressing pasta on those “meatless Fridays,” rather than plain tomato sauce, clam sauce, pesto, oil and garlic, broccoli and garlic, etc.

So, this month I’ve poured through my library searching for some new (not same old, same old) non-tomato sauces for pasta. With a few more weeks left to the Lenten season, I’ll be serving these in my kitchen:

Olive Sauce for Pasta:

6 oz. mushrooms, chopped
14 oz. pasta
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
6 oz. pitted black olives
3 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
4 Tbsp. butter
Salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
8 Tbsp. cream
2 oz. grated Parmesan cheese

Saute mushrooms in oil then blend with garlic, olives and parsley in food processor.  Cook pasta in boiling water about 8 minutes until al dente.  Meanwhile, melt butter in a pan and cook olive mixture with salt and pepper flakes for 5 minutes to release flavors.  Stir in cream.  Add Parmesan cheese.  Toss with pasta and serve.  Serves 4.

***

Fettucine with Chardonnay and Red Pepper Sauce:

2 cups Chardonnay wine
2 large roasted red peppers (can be canned, just drain)
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup fresh basil, packed
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
12 oz. fettucine, prepared al dente

Boil wine until it is reduced to 1/2 cup.  Puree’ peppers and add to wine; stir in cream.  Bring to boil, stirring constantly.  Cut basil into strips and add to sauce.  Add sauce to pasta and toss well.  Toss with grated Parmesan and serve.  Serves 4.

  ***

Pasta with Shrimp and Jalapeno Orange Sauce:

6 Tbsp. butter
24 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 Tbsp. minced shallots
1 small jalapeno chili, seeded, thinly sliced ( or use 1/2 tsp. of chopped canned chiles)
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 cups orange juice
3/4 cup whipping cream
Salt and pepper to taste
1 lb. pasta (angel hair, if possible)
Parsley, for garnish

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add shrimp and cook until just pink, approximately one minute per side.  Transfer shrimp to a plate.  Add shallots and jalapeno to skillet and saute 1 minute.  Add wine and bring to boil.  Mix in orange juice and cream.  Boil until reduced to thin sauce, stirring occasionally (approximately 10-15 minutes).  Season to taste with salt and pepper.   Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente; drain.  Add shrimp to sauce and cook until heated through.  Add pasta and toss well.  Sprinkle with minced fresh parsley. Makes 6-8 servings.

 ***

Shrimp and Linguine with Sherry Cream Sauce:

3 Tbsp. butter
1 lb. medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 Tbsp. chopped garlic
2 tsp. chopped shallot
6 Tbsp. cream sherry
1 cup heavy cream
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
8 oz. linguine, cooked al dente and drained

Heat butter in large skillet over medium heat until melted.  Increase heat to medium-high.  Add shrimp, garlic and shallot.  Saute for 15-20 seconds.  Stir in sherry.  Add cream, parsley, salt and pepper and mix well.  Cook until shrimp turn pink, stirring constantly.   Remove shrimp with slotted spoon to a bowl.  Cover to keep warm.

Cook sauce until reduced by 1/4, stirring constantly.  Return shrimp to skillet.  Cook just until heated through.

To serve, spoon hot pasta onto 3 dinner plates.  Divide shrimp evenly between servings.  Drizzle with sauce.  Serves 3.

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Linguine with Scallops, Shrimp and Snow Peas:

1 lb. linguine
4 Tbsp. butter, melted
5 Tbsp. butter, cold
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lb. bay scallops
1/2 lb. medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
2 cups snow peas, blanched
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook linguine until al dente; drain.  Toss with melted butter.  Heat remaining 5 Tbsp. butter in large skillet.  Add garlic and saute until softened.  Add scallops, shrimp, salt and pepper.  Saute for 3-4 minutes or until they are opaque.  Add snow peas and heat through.  Toss mixture with linguine.  Add cheese and serve at once.  Serves 4-6. 

***

Divine Wisdom Fettuccine:

1-8 oz. pkg. cream cheese
1 stick butter
1-12 oz. can evaporated milk
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 cup minced parsley
1 lb. fettuccine, cooked al dente and drained
Cracked pepper

In top of a large double boiler over simmering water, melt cream cheese and butter together.  Stir in evaporated milk and whisk until creamy.  Add 1/4 cup of the grated cheese and minced parsley.  Toss warm fettuccine into sauce.  Serve immediately with cracked pepper and remaining Parmesan cheese.

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