This Fresh Linguine with Shrimp and Peas in a Pink Cream Sauce is a dazzler of a pasta dish. When you combine fresh pasta with big shrimp you are very quickly telling your guests that you love them very much. But it’s not just the guests who will be extremely happy. This whole dish comes together in about 20 minutes. Really! Truly!
Fresh Pasta vs. Dried
Fresh pasta is more delicate and tender than dried pasta, and it cooks in about half the time. It’s got a little bit of silkiness to it, and when it’s enveloped in a creamy sauce it’s one of the more lush meals around. I love both, and most Italian cooks do, too, but you get different results with each.
When I was a kid I was a little bit obsessed with making fresh pasta – I asked for a pasta machine when I was 12 and spent copious amounts of time cranking out ribbons of fresh pasta and letting them dry on the back of our dining room chairs. My mother was about as happy about that as you might imagine.
Using the Pasta Cooking Water
Adding some of the pasta cooking water to the dish cuts the heaviness of the cream sauce, plus the bit of starch that stays in the cooking water helps bind the sauce to the pasta. Salt the sauce lightly, if at all, up to the point where you add the pasta cooking water, which will also be salted. Then taste and see if you need more seasoning.
I also plan to make this with scallops – either small bay scallops, which just need a quick sauté before they are set aside to rejoin the pasta and sauce later. Or, big fat sea scallops would be a huge treat. Sear those for about 3 minutes on each side, until just cooked through, and then just place them on top of the sauced pasta at the end.
Fresh Herbs Make the Dish
And there are plenty of times where dried herbs are just as good as fresh, in some cases even better (slow simmered stews and sauces and such), here you must use fresh. The minute you taste this, you’ll understand why. The mix of basil and parsley is refreshing and smells like a garden exploded in your kitchen.
You truly don’t need a side vegetable with this because of the generous amount of peas, but you could make some simply sauteed spinach or kale and pile that on the plate for extra green and extra nutrition.
Other Shrimp Recipes to Try:
- Shrimp Lo Mein
- Shrimp, Sugar Snap Pea and Scallion Stir Fry with Miso Sauce
- 15-Minute Hoisin Shrimp
- Spicy Lemon Shrimp Over Rice
- Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry with Udon Noodles
Fresh Linguine with Shrimp and Peas in a Pink Cream Sauce
- Kosher salt to taste
- 2 pounds peeled and deveined extra large shrimp
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic peeled and lightly crushed
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 2 9- ounce packages fresh linguine
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ½ cup chopped fresh basil
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- Chopped fresh parsley or basil to taste
- Bring a large stockpot of salted water to a boil.
- Meanwhile, heat the oil in a very large skillet over medium heat, and sauté the garlic for 3 or 4 minutes just until it starts to lightly color. Remove the garlic cloves and toss them. Add the shrimp to the skillet and sauté for about 3 minutes until the shrimp have started to turn pink, then remove them with a slotted spoon to a plate and set aside.
- Add the tomato paste and white wine to the skillet and stir until the tomato paste has dissolved into the wine. Add the parsley, basil, peas and cream and bring to a simmer. Season with pepper. Return the partially cooked shrimp to the sauce and continue to simmer until the peas and shrimp have cooked through, about 2 minutes.
- While you are making the sauce, cook the pasta in the boiling water according to package directions, about 4 minutes. Remove 1/2 cup of the cooking water, and stir it into the sauce, then drain the pasta. Taste the sauce and see if it needs more salt or pepper.
- Return the pasta to the pot, pour over the sauce and toss to combine. Transfer to a serving bowl, sprinkle with additional parsley or basil if desired, and serve immediately.
Made this recipe? Post a photo of your delicious creation on Instagram with our hashtag #dinnersolved