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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Farewell, Roomie!

Tonight is Leigh Ann's last night in my humble abode. Tomorrow she closes on her new house. We are watching Bachelor Pad online on the porch with the windows open. And she is -- GET THIS -- polishing my silver while I heat up our dessert!

I will miss her.

Anyway, LA says she was the victim of false advertising in this living arrangement, claiming that I did not cook dinner for her NEARLY AS OFTEN as she was led to believe by my cooking posts. But she says I redeemed myself tonight! I made Pasta with Shrimp and Cilantro-Lime Pesto from the July issue of Bon Appetit. We both agree it is a keeper. Helpful hints to follow the recipe. Makes 4 servings.

1 1/4 cups (packed) fresh cilantro leaves, plus 1/4 cup chopped
1/4 cup (scant) chopped green onions
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeno chile
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound linguine
1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
3 tablespoons tequila
1/4 cup crumbled Cotija cheese or feta cheese

Blend 1 1/4 cups cilantro leaves and next 4 ingredients in processor until coarse puree forms. With machine running, gradually add 1/2 cup oil. Season generously with salt. Pesto can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.

Cook linguine in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and cook until almost opaque in center, about 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat; add tequila. Return skillet to heat and stir until sauce is syrupy, about 30 seconds. Add pesto; stir to coat. Remove from heat.

Add pasta to sauce in skillet; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Divide past and shrimp among 4 plates. Sprinkle cheese and chopped cilantro over and serve. (Adapted from Tejas Texas Grill & Saloon in Hermantown, Minnesota.)

Notes from moi: This would be a super-easy weeknight supper if you made the pesto in advance. You can even get frozen shrimp and defrost them in the fridge the day you want to make it. Then it would be super simple to put together when you get home from work. LA and I both thought it was so fresh and tasty -- though she thought I had a bit too much jalapeno. I used some jalapeno pickles and just chopped them up (with seeds); they keep in the fridge so much more efficiently than buying fresh ones.

For dessert, we had ice cream sundaes with warmed caramel icing.

I made a sour cream pound cake with caramel icing for a program at church last night, using Ranie's Aunt Linda's famous recipe. I put the leftover icing in a Tupperware and heated it back up on the stove so it was warm and saucy. We toasted some pecans and sprinkled it all with kosher salt. Scrumptious!

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