Friday, September 12, 2008

A Little Tasty Tidbit

It has been a long time since my time in the restaurant business...but I do still love to cook.
Now, you must understand that I have a meat and potatoes husband.
If I pan sear a nice filet and do some baked potatoes....I have hit his
love language on the head. ;) Usually the only time I get to cook a little something fancy is at family get togethers or on birthdays.
When Holly decided to put together a cookbook for the was good to be doing a little instructional recipe stuff again. I spent quite a bit of time doing training since there is such a huge turn over in the restaurant business.
So if the recipe that is to follow seems very is the teacher talking. :)
Halfmoon Girl asked if I could post one of the recipes that I submitted for the cookbook.
This is a variation of a sauce that we used quite often in the fine dinning restaurant I worked in.
Nothing would thrill me more than to be in your kitchen with you showing you how easy it is to put some of these things out. Of course the world has changed quite a bit since I wore a chef hat. Now there are classes all over the place you can take and t.v is full of instructional cooking shows.
You may be way past the info that I have put out here.....but the teacher in me says
that I must keep it easy.
But, if you have any questions about this...or anything else....let me know.
We will see how much I remember. :)

Dakota Shrimp Pasta

3 to 4 pounds peeled medium 70/90 sized shrimp (frozen or fresh)
1 cup thinly sliced Tasso
4 sticks unsalted butter--softened
1 t chopped rosemary
6 cloves roasted garlic chopped
3 dashes of Worcestershire
3 T Lemon juice
1 cup white wine-does not need to be expensive...but don't use anything sweet.
1 cup heavy cream
Salt and White Pepper
3 green onions finely chopped
One pound cooked angel hair pasta

Go ahead if you can and cook your pasta in advance. You can rinse it to remove the starch (that makes it stick) and store it in the refrigerator covered until it needs to be reheated. Also, if you cook too much pasta…just freeze it. Thaw it out by placing it in boiling water. You can heat your precooked pasta the same way.
In advance take your peeled garlic and boil it in a little water. When the garlic is tender- but not mushy- drain off the water. This boiling removes the bite of the garlic that gives bad breath. (roasted garlic taste incredible in cream sauces or soups.) Then take a little olive oil or vegetable oil and lightly brown the garlic on the outside. Once it is cool chop it so that it is ready for your sauce when you start the cooking.
This would also be a good time to thinly slice your tasso and set it aside.
Now with every thing out and ready to go we are ready to start a sauce that will not take long at all to cook. That is why it is good to have a pot of water on the side hot and ready to heat your pasta.

Now that we are ready…..It is very important not to over cook your shrimp. So, get your pan out and melt half a stick of butter. Add 1 teaspoon of garlic and then add your shrimp. You want your pan hot…just not hot enough to burn your garlic.
Once your shrimp are in the pan….season them right away with salt and pepper. It is always important to season seafood as it is cooking in the beginning.
Once the shrimp are cooked remove them from the heat and remove them from the liquid. Place them aside in a bowl with your thinly sliced tasso. Just in case you are not familiar with tasso-- it can be made from ham or turkey. It is a smoked product that adds great flavor to this pasta and it is also great in cream sauces.
Now that our shrimp are removed from the pan it is time to work on the sauce. We will let the shrimp and tasso sit till the sauce is finished.
Remove the rest of the butter from wrappers and cut butter into thick slices. We want this to soften in order to be ready to add to our sauce.
In the pan with the left over juice add everything but butter, heavy cream and green onions. We want to let this reduce- to about half. Once it is reduced… pour in your heavy cream and let reduce again by not quite half. Don’t worry if it looks broken or separated-- it will come together as it simmers and reduces. Don’t forget to stir during this process--do not BOIL.
Once it is reduced we want to turn the heat down to a medium low. We don’t want to boil during this end process. But we do want to let the butter melt.
With a spoon or wisk..constantly stirring…. slowly start to add the butter. Add a little and stir constantly as it melts and then add more until you are all finished. It will have a creamy consistency. Taste to see if more salt or pepper need to be added. Once the flavor is good add the tasso, shrimp, rosemary and a liberal amount of sliced green onions.
Serve sauce over pasta with French bread or some type of crusty bread….everyone will go crazy for this sauce and need something to catch every bit.

This is a great sauce with seafood of any kind. If you decide to broil or bake a meaty fish and want a great sauce…this is it. You can even leave out the seafood and tasso and just use the sauce plain. Garnish your fish with a sprig of rosemary and a thin slice of lemon. What’s not to like?

This sauce does not hold easily. But if you need to you can put it in a pot (bain marie) and let it sit in medium warm water until you are ready for it. I find that it cooks so quickly that when everything else is almost finished--that is a good time to put this sauce together.



Pastor Lisa said...

Oh my word this sounds wonderful! But Sharon, since moving to Houston I developed an allergy to all shellfish! Oh the horror! No crab, no crawfish (so no crawfish boil with potatoes and corn), no shrimp, not even scallops!

So when I get to heaven I've put in my menu request for our great banquet with him...I want a shellfish bonanza! LOL!

The recipe sounds wonderful and I'd love to try it for the family but even touching shrimp triggers the allergic reaction!

Can something else be substituted?

Denise said...

Thanks for sharing sweetie.

Halfmoon Girl said...

mmmm, this sounds so good. You made me a happy girl- i am going to try this one night for hubby and I! Now I am going to go Google Tasso- have no idea what that is or looks like.

try2bAsunbeam said...

ahh...glad I'm not the only one who doesn't know what tasso is! Google, here I come!

I love the simplicity of your recipe.

My favorite easy dish is shrimp marinated in garlic, rosemary, and a titch of olive oil tossed shell and all on the grill...Side of angel hair pasta and steamed broccoli. Or just over a nice bed of lettuce...Or, mind mind is going and going...YumYum