A break in transmission between travel posts… and a sensational garlic prawn pasta

September 6, 2010 at 11:40 am Leave a comment

So we’re back and though I haven’t yet uploaded more blogs from our trip, I promise I’m going to. This week I’m in Brissie and away from my Mac (which is the custodian of all my food photography), but I was itching to say hello and share this garlic prawn pasta recipe with you because it surprised both Mr L and me with its brilliance! So forgive the break in transmission between travel posts, but for now, I’d urge you to give this recipe a go and then let me know what you think of it!

My unexpectedly brilliant garlic prawn pasta

We got back from our amazing holiday last week.  After five weeks on the road, eating and drinking and enjoying loads of general merriment, I decided we’d best have a home made meal or two. 

On Monday, I went up to Woolworths with no real vision and came home with a basket of random goodies.  Amongst the pack were De Costi garlic prawns, celery, carrot, cherry tomatoes, capsicum and garlic.  I also had salmon pieces and lamb cutlets (the cutlets for Mr L’s birthday cutlet extravaganza) and various other items.  By the time Thursday came around, I had used the salmon and the cutlets and was left staring at the prawns. 

De Costi garlic prawns, courtesy of www.decosti.com.au

De Costi garlic prawns, courtesy of http://www.decosti.com.au

I had an issue.  Mr L (aka birthday boy) wasn’t so keen on the concept of the prawns.  He didn’t think they were going to fill him up and their use for that night’s dinner was looking dubious.  I thought he was going to play the birthday card and convince me to let him order delivery.  Fortunately, I managed to push him out of the kitchen and with the silence that ensued, put my mind to what I could achieve with these prawns.

I looked in the cupboard and found a number of extra useful ingredients: an Aldi tomato pasta sauce that I’d previously bought and some gluten free penne.  Note that these discoveries were both with some glee – I really hadn’t thought about what was in the pantry for about five weeks. 

Lightbulb moment!

Lightbulb moment!

Ding!  Lightbulb moment.  I would make a garlic prawn pasta.  It would be delicious.  And no one would want to be around us for days owing to garlic intake – a useful tactic during the first week back at work after a long, fabulous holiday!

Ghaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarlic

Ghaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarlic

Ingredients

2 sticks of celery, chopped into 5 mm wide pieces
1 medium carrot, chopped into match sticks (julienne)
1/4 small red capsicum, chopped into something like match sticks
1/2 punnet cherry tomatoes, left whole
1 clove of garlic, crushed or finely chopped
500 g basil and garlic pasta sauce (I used Aldi’s JUST ORGANIC Organic pasta sauce)
250 g x penne pasta shells (I used San Remo gluten free penne)
400 g x De Costi garlic prawns (though you could use any kind of garlic prawns)
1 x tablespoon of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Optional: kalamata olives (I didn’t have these, but think they’d add extra dimension to the dish) and herbs

Red capsicum

Red capsicum

Method

Fill a large saucepan with water and place on stove in order to prepare the pasta.  Prepare to manufacturers instructions (about 8-10 mins for the San Remo gf penne.)

While the pasta is boiling, heat a medium sized frying pan on another element – heat the olive oil over fairly high heat (about 2/3).  Once hot, add the garlic and stir briefly before adding carrot, celery and capsicum.  Sautee in oil for approx 3-4 mins or until slightly soft.  Shake, then add the tomato sauce.  Turn heat down to about 1/3 of stove heat and stir every now and then to ensure the sauce doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

Celery - so good for you!

Celery - so good for you!

On a separate element, heat another frying pan over fairly high heat (about 2/3) and add prawns with a bit of olive oil.  Cook until the prawns lose their translucence.  How long you need to cook them for will vary depending on your stove, but watch them carefully as (as Mr L said on the night) – “an overcooked prawn is no fun!”

By this time, your pasta should be ready to remove from the stove.  Remove it, drain the hot water.  Turn that element or hot plate down to very low.  Rinse the pasta under cold water and drain again.  Then put the pasta back in the saucepan and put that back on the element now on low.

Your prawns should be ready.  Put the prawns in with the tomato and vegetable sauce in the first pan.  Stir to combine all ingredients.  Then put all ingredients in the big saucepan with the pasta and stir to ensure thorough combination.

Cherry tomatoes

Cherry tomatoes

Serve it up!

You’re good to go!  With preparation time, all up it should have only taken about 20 mins to prepare.  Now that’s better than take away isn’t it?

Sadly, I don’t have a picture of this dish as I truely didn’t expect it to be as good as it was!  If you choose to make it, please take a shot and send it to me.  Hopefully it will surprise you with its simple brilliance too!  Beware though – Mr L had some more the next day and then came to say hello to me – the garlic was pretty strong – no vampires at our place!

Serves 4

No vampires here!

No vampires here!

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Entry filed under: Cheap n cheerful, Dinner, Gluten free. Tags: , , , , .

The wheels on the bus go round and round Well hello 2011!

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