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I cook prawns most months of the year, but I am especially appreciative of them in the winter months when many types of fresh seafood are not as readily available. And if you were looking for a special recipe for a romantic dinner, this would be my suggestion.
It combines several of my favorite ingredients – pasta, prawns, roasted red peppers and lemon in just the right flavor combination. Best of all it goes together in about 30 minutes.
For the pasta you can used dried linguine or fresh. For the prawns I recommend buying wild over the farm raised, for better flavor and texture. They are available frozen or depending on the time of the year, fresh in the seafood case of the grocery store.
If you love the flavor of roasted red peppers but don’t have the time to do them yourself, the ones available in the jar are a good alternative. I use them a lot.
I prefer Italian flat leaf parsley over curly for no particular distinct difference except I like the look of the flat leaf better and I do think it has a slightly stronger flavor. You can use either one or fresh basil or cilantro if you prefer. The pinch of the red pepper flakes adds mild to medium spiciness so if you like it hotter add more. And I saved the lemon for last as it gives the refreshing zip to the sweet prawns and smoky flavored roasted pepper.
Makes 4 servings
- 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) olive oil or 2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 pound medium (26-30 per pound) or large (16-20 per pound) size prawns, peeled, deveined and tail removed
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 12 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley, basil or cilantro
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
- 8 ounces linguine or fettuccine noodles
- Grated Parmesan cheese
In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil and garlic over medium heat; add prawns and season with salt and pepper; cook until prawns are halfway done, about 3-4 minutes, then cook and stir until prawns are cooked through, about 4 minutes longer. Add red peppers, parsley and red pepper flakes; reduce heat to low and cook and stir until heated through, about 3-4 minutes; remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and zest
Cook linguini in boiling, salted water, according to package directions; drain; add cooked linguini to prawns, tossing lightly until all ingredients are evenly mixed.
Divide onto 4 plates; top with grated Parmesan cheese.