It was one if those rare evenings, Gina was home, we both had plans for later but needed a quick meal. Together cooking in the kitchen, 20 something talk about life, mother talk about reality, sighing about differences, loving every minute.
Whenever I find a recipe or method that I feel can be recreated in a variety of ways, it becomes my go to method for pulling together quick, satisfyingly elegant meals. I’m hooked on this easy sauce I found on on Taste, a Williams Sonoma blog.
As the recipe stands, it is a perfect light dish when craving pasta. And, yes, I crave pasta and I no longer deny myself such a beautiful pleasure.
Another beautiful pleasure….a recipe requiring wine, 1/2 cup for the sauce, a glass for me.
We followed the recipe pretty much as is, however we used only 1/2 lb of pasta. Fresh shrimp, lobster mussels or firm fish could be substituted, a touch of cream would lighten the color and add richness. And when I want to avoid the carbs, spaghetti squash instead of the pasta.
Linguine with Spicy Calamari
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
3 large cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried, finely chopped or crumbled
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3/4 cup, 6 oz, tomato paste
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 cup bottled clam juice
1 lb. cleaned small squid, cut into rings and tentacles
1/2 lb. linguine (purchase Artisan pasta made in Italy, pay a bit more, think quality over quantity, it makes a huge difference)
2 tablespoons fresh Italian, flat leaf parsley
In a fry pan large enough to accommodate the pasta later, warm the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the shallots, garlic, rosemary, and red pepper flakes and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the
shallots and garlic are softened but not colored, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and stir for about 2 minutes. Add 1/4 tsp. salt and the wine and simmer until most of the wine has evaporated, about 3
minutes. Add the clam juice and continue to simmer until thickened and aromatic, about 20 minutes.
Add the squid and cook gently until tender, no more than 5 minutes. If the sauce becomes thin after
cooking the squid, remove the squid with a slotted spoon to a bowl. Cook the sauce over gentle heat until it once again thickens, then return the squid to the pan. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.
In a large pot, bring 5 water to a rapid boil. Check the package directions for the cooking time, then add 2 Tbs. salt and the pasta to the boiling water, stir well and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is 1 minute shy of being al dente.
Drain the pasta, add to the sauce in the pan and place the pan over low heat. Add the parsley and toss the pasta and sauce together for about 1 minute. Some of the sauce will be absorbed by the pasta, but plenty will remain, keeping the pasta moist. Transfer to a warmed large, shallow serving bowl or individual shallow bowls and serve right immediately. Serves 4.