Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Fight or Flight

My husband and I recently had to take a four day trip out of state for a funeral. As our flight approached the runway on Sunday it occurred to me that I had no plan for dinner that night but I quickly brushed the thought away because I just wanted to see my kids. We got home in good time and played with the kids and began unpacking. I looked at the clock and realized it was dinnertime and I had no idea what to make for dinner. We could either go out to dinner (not appetizing to us after eating out for 4 days straight) or stay home and make do with what we had. I was in no mood to go the grocery store after 12 hours of airports and flying.

Remembering that I had some sugar snap peas in the vegetable drawer and some frozen shrimp, I thought about making a stir fry. But my toddler wouldn't eat it and I wasn't in the mood to make a separate meal for her. Then I remembered my favorite in-a-pinch Everyday Food recipe for Spaghetti with Shrimp and Bacon.

But I didn't have the exact ingredients! I figured I could riff on it and make it with what I had on hand - I also found some bacon in the freezer too! Here is what I made for dinner tonight. I am proud to report that my son asked if this version could be our new Sunday night dinner. The toddler happily ate sugar snap peas and pasta. Mom Score: 1 Family Score: 10

Shrimp, Bacon & Sugar Snap Pea Pasta

3/4 pound whole wheat angel hair pasta
3 good handfuls of sugar snap peas, ends and strings removed - roughly chopped
3/4 pound frozen peeled and deveined shrimp, defrosted (I just put mine in a bowl with warm water and they defrost quickly)
5 slices bacon
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Juice from 1 lemon

Bring pasta water to boil and throw in the sugar snap peas for about 2 minutes. remove them with a slotted spoon (don't throw out the water, you'll use it for the pasta!) and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Set aside.

Now cook the pasta in the boiling water.

In a separate pan, fry the bacon, reserving about 1 Tablespoon of bacon grease in the pan. Cook the shrimp and garlic in the pan with the reserved bacon grease and when they curl up and are opaque, add a small ladleful of pasta water in the pan with the shrimp and garlic. Toss in the sugar snap peas and squeeze the juice of one lemon (or more to taste) into the pan. Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat.

Drain the pasta and place the cooked pasta and the shrimp mixture in a bowl together. Toss well and add salt and pepper to taste.

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