Channeling that Italian Restaurant

I know we all have days where we need to get dinner on the table quickly. Oh, that’s every day? I hear that…so check out this meal idea.

Pasta is generally a pretty easy, quick dinner option…assuming you don’t make your own, which I don’t. I might get there one day, but until then the boxed pasta is just fine. This time I used Farfalle (bow-tie) to go with a shrimp and spinach Alfredo sauce.  The only part of this meal that took some thinking was making the Alfredo sauce from scratch, because I usually use a bottle. Here’s how you should prepare this meal for maximum time efficiency.


What you need:

  • Pasta
  • Shrimp (I used a bag of frozen, raw medium-size)
  • 1 Bag of Spinach
  • 1 Pint of Heavy Cream
  • Parmesan Cheese (I used the whole bag, 6 oz)
  • 1 stick of butter (1/2 cup)
  • Salt, pepper, garlic powder (Whatever else you like)
  • 2 pots and 1 pan

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First, start thawing your shrimp (if they’re still frozen)…then start boiling salted water in one pot for your pasta…AND start slowly melting the stick of of butter in the other pot to start your Alfredo sauce.

Next, drizzle a little olive oil in the pan and add the spinach.  Stir and add more until you’ve cooked/wilted the whole amount. (Crazy how little spinach you get from a whole bag!) Season with salt & pepper, turn off the heat and cover.

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By now your water may be boiling and your butter should be melted.  Add your pasta and cook according to the box instructions (10-12 min for the Farfalle).  With the heat set to medium/low, add the heavy cream to the melted butter.  Slowly simmer (don’t boil), and add salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  After simmering for a couple of minutes, add the cheese and stir until smooth. Don’t ask me how long, I don’t remember. Stir for a while then go check on your shrimp.

Peel the thawed shrimp, rinse, and season.  I kept it simple and used seasoned salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Now go back and check that Alfredo sauce…give it a few stirs, maybe use a whisk this time, and it should be ready.

 

Finally, pour the sauce over the spinach in the pan. Add the raw shrimp to this mixture and the hot Alfredo sauce will heat it through without over-cooking it. Then add the drained pasta and stir. I never even turned the heat back on, because the items I added to the pan were so hot, but you can simmer on low until you’re ready to serve.

Oh, I almost forgot! Sometime during all that you’ll need to pre-heat your oven for the bread sticks.  They only take a few minutes, so do that last.  My salad is just a spring mix with matchstick carrots, grape tomatoes, and a bottled Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Finished. Easy. Enjoy!

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