Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Shrimp Carbonara

       Sometimes I wish I lived by the ocean. Okay that's not true, everyday I wish I lived next to the ocean. Can you just picture it, beautiful sunrises and sunsets, tranquil breezes, you without a care in the world, all the fresh seafood you could eat, and a cute cabana boy waiting on you hand and foot? Well, maybe not the cabana boy. I don't think the hubby would appreciate him but a girl can dream. Haha.  I am determined to someday live by the ocean but until I win the lottery or become rich and famous I will just have to visit on occasion or at least think of ways to bring it to me.

      I love seafood and when I say seafood I mean all kinds. Fish, shrimp, oysters, lobster, okay you get the point I think I almost sounded like Bubba Gump for a minute. Anyway, it can be quite expensive in Arizona, you know because of the no water thing but that does not diminish my love for it. In fact, I think I crave it more. I grew up in Georgia, Savannah to be precise, and we always had fresh seafood. This was one of the hardest things to have to give up when I moved to Arizona. I don't mean give it up completely but you can't go down to the docks and purchase fresh shrimp off the boat here. This makes me savor every time I get to eat it.
     I bought some shrimp on sale at the grocery store the other day and could not wait to eat it. I did not want to just boil it or sauté it but combine it with two of my favorite things. Pasta and bacon. I know not the healthiest way to prepare it but boy did it taste good! This recipe was very easy to make and so worth the extra calories. I do hope you give it a try the next time you buy shrimp but are not quite sure what to do with it.

Shrimp Carbonara
Melissa DeWees
  1. 1 pound of shrimp de-shelled and de-veined
  2. 5 pieces of bacon
  3. 1 t olive oil
  4. 1 onion diced
  5. 1 red or yellow bell pepper diced (I used 6 mini)
  6. 1 head of broccoli broken into florets
  7. 1/2 c heavy cream
  8. 4 oz. of cream cheese
  9. 2 cloves of garlic minced
  10. 2 T of butter
  11. 1/4 c chicken broth (you can substitute white wine but I did not have any)
  12. 1/4 c parmesan cheese and more for topping
  13. 2 tsp. of basil flakes
  14. 1 tsp. of oregano
  15. pinch of red pepper flakes
  16. salt and pepper to taste
  17. 1 1b. of your favorite pasta
  • Heat pan over medium heat and cook bacon until crispy and at the same time cook pasta according to package directions. Drain but set aside some pasta water in case you need to thin out sauce.
  • Remove bacon, drain on paper towel, dice when cool and set aside
  • Remove all but 1 T of bacon fat and add olive oil and butter
  • Add onions, bell pepper, and broccoli, sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until softened
  • Add garlic and cook until fragrant about 1 minute
  • Add shrimp and cook until almost done then add seasonings - basil and oregano
  • Add the chicken broth and cook until reduced
  • Add the cream cheese and melt it in the pan and when it is melted add the heavy cream and cook until thickened.
  • Mix in the pasta, red pepper flakes into the veggie sauce.
  • Add bacon back in and the parmesan cheese. Toss together. Taste. if it needs salt and pepper add it to taste.
  • Enjoy with more parmesan cheese if desired.


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