Thursday, November 20, 2008
Spaghetti Marco Polo - A Chitalian Stir-Fry
This is a mongrel dish that refuses to be claimed by a specific cuisine; the ingredients are Italian but the cooking method is decidedly Chinese. Here's my bad... while on a train, my ears perked up when I heard folks talking food - actually I was eavesdropping - and while I didn't catch all the particulars I heard just enough to get the jist of this recipe and put it on my must try list. While I suspect the dish has its origins in Australia or New Zealand (these folks were Aussies), I'm going to call it Chitalian and let it go at that. You'll need a pasta with a slight bite, shrimp, and a tube of sun-dried tomato paste (not to be confused with concentrated tomato paste) to make this super fast and easy entree. Some basil and sun-dried tomato strips make a nice garnish. I've probably missed some ingredients, but based on what I heard this is it and it's so tasty I haven't tried to improve it. It's a wonderful family meal that's also good for casual entertaining. I think you'll enjoy this.
Spaghetti Marco Polo
12-ounces Chinese style noodles or spaghetti
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided use
1 pound shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 to 2 teaspoons freshly minced garlic
3 to 4 tablespoons sun-dried tomato paste (supplier link)
Salt and pepper to taste
Garnish: fresh basil leaves, oil packed sun-dried strips
1) Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a rolling boil. Cook pasta per package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta water.
2) Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a wok or large deep-sided frying pan. Add shrimp and stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add garlic and continue cooking until the shrimp turn pink, about 2 minutes longer.
3) Stir in 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomato paste. Toss to coat. Transfer to a bowl. Keep warm.
4) Add reserved 1 tablespoon oil to wok. Stir in remaining sun-dried tomato paste. Add noodles and toss to coat. Add pasta water, a tablespoon at a time, to form a glistening sauce. Return shrimp to pan; toss again to combine. Adjust salt and peppper to taste. Turn onto a serving plate. Garnish with basil and sun-dried tomato strips. Yield: 4 servings.
I'm sending this recipe on to Nilmandra of Soy and Pepper who is hosting Presto Pasta Nights , an event created by Ruth at Once Upon A Feast.