Saturday, 18 February 2012

Linguine with Prawn, Tomato and Fennel Sauce, and Lemon Dill Pangratatta

Phew.  Long name, but an easy and delicious pasta sauce inspired by a recipe from the Barefoot Contessa.  In her version, she baked the prawns and sauce with feta cheese and the breadcrumbs on top, then served with crusty bread, but I thought it would be good turned into a pasta dish - I ditched the feta as I don't think it goes well with seafood myself!  Anyway, make a good tomato sauce with a finely chopped onion and also a chopped head of bulb fennel -saute in olive oil, add a tin of good tomatoes (Cirio brand for me) and a couple of cloves of garlic and simmer until the fennel is tender and the sauce is reduced.  If you have any Pernod in the house, add a slug just before the end to highlight the fennel flavour.  Make the pangratatta by sauteeing about 4 tablespoons of fresh white breadcrumbs in a tablespoon of olive oil until crisp, season well with salt and pepper and grate in the zest of half a lemon and some chopped dill or parsley if preferred.  You can set everything aside at this point.  When ready to serve, reheat your sauce, cook the pasta and 3 minutes before it is ready, add about 100g of chopped, ready cooked prawns to the sauce and reheat.  (Or you could put raw ones in a minute earlier).  Drain pasta, toss with the sauce and serve with the pangratatta sprinkled over and the halved lemon for squeezing.  NO PARMESAN PLEASE!!!

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