Shrimp Pesto Pasta
- 3 cups Fresh Basil
- ⅓ cup Pine Nuts or walnuts
- 2 medium Garlic Cloves
- 6 tbsp. Olive Oil
- ½ – 1 tsp. Fine Sea Salt depending on preference
- Pepper to taste
- 1 lb. Shrimp shells removed and deveined
- Salt to taste
- Pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
- 2 medium Garlic Cloves minced
- ¼ tsp. Red Chili Pepper Flakes
- 1 tbsp. Fresh Basil thinly sliced
- ¾ lb. Linguine certified gluten free if necessary
- 1 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
- 1 lb. Asparagus with tough ends broken off and cut into 1″ pieces
- 1 medium Shallot thinly sliced
- Squeeze of Lemon Juice
- Fresh Mozzarella to taste
- In a high speed blender or a food processor, combine the bail, pine nuts, garlic, salt, and pepper. Pulse until blended (but stop shy of it becoming a uniform paste). Spoon into a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Press the plastic wrap onto the top of the pesto to stop the pesto from browning.
- Wash and thoroughly dry the shrimp. Sprinkle with salt and pepper on both sides.
- In a large skillet, melt the butter. Add the garlic, salt, and red chili flakes. Stir to combine and sauté until aromatic (about 30 seconds – 1 minute).
- Add the shrimp and cook until they are cooked halfway through (depending on the size of shrimp you’re using, this could take anywhere from 45 seconds – 2 minutes).
- Using tongs, flip the shrimp and sauté until the shrimp are cooked through.
- Set the shrimp aside (being sure to reserve the oil).
- In a large pot of salted water, cook the pasta until it’s just al dente. Reserve ¼ cup of the pasta water when it’s finished cooking.
- While the pasta is cooking, saute the shallot and asparagus. In a large skillet, melt the butter. Add the shallot and stir. Saute for 30 seconds. Add in the asparagus and stir. Saute just until the asparagus turns a bright green.
- Add the cooked pasta to the skillet. Add the pasta water and the pesto, and toss to combine.
- Top with the shrimp, fresh mozzarella pieces, and the reserved oil.
- Serve hot.
Avoid salting the steps that don’t call for it (even if you’re used to salting vegetables and garlic when you’re cooking them). Plenty of salt is added from the salt and peppered shrimp, the pesto, and the pasta water.