Tagliatelle ai scampi e pomodoro fresco
Think Italian food, and you think messy spaghetti in tomato sauce (not as messy as in Naples perhaps, but still). Think classy and you think seafood. So this, my friends, is the perfect combination of classic Italian pasta and elegance. Not to mention tasty.
Fish: also known as “the reason I will never be a vegetarian”. I love steak, but could resist it. Put me in front of fresh oysters, grilled tuna, smoked salmon or barbeque king prawns and my willpower crumbles like a burned piece of melba toast.
You will need (serves 2, GENEROUSLY)
300g of tagliatelle pasta
16 langoustines (make sure the number is divisible by the number of people eating, or fights WILL occur)
500g of fresh tomates
1. Put aside 6 of the langoustines whole for decor
2. top and tail the other langoustines – KEEP THE BITS!
3. Place the bodies in a bowl and put to one side.
4. Chop tomatoes and put to one side
5. Crush the garlic and heat oil in a pan. Add garlic on a low heat and begin to brown.
6. Put langoustine heads and tails in a pan or water and set to boil
7. Add tomatoes to pan with garlic and oil. Once soft, you can either squash with a fork, or if you lack patience (like me when I’m hungry) you can salt, pepper and blend.
8. Drain langoustine water into another pan and put back on the gas. When it is boiling, add salt then pasta. Put a spoonful of the water in your sauce and simmer it off.
9. Add langoustine bodies and whole langoustines to sauce for cooking.
10. Drain the pasta al dente and stir into sauce.
11. Serve. White wine obligatory, as always
NB. Many people outside Italy assume that the sauce is supposed to flavour the pasta and that the latter, thus, does not need to taste of anything. This is a fallacy, and the reason Italians salt their pasta and come up with all sorts of other ways to get flavours into it. Boiling shells, bones or vegetables in the pasta water is one of the oldest tricks in the book, and gives the dish a whole new depth, so be sure to try it!
With love, from Italy