4.07.2016

WE EAT | shrimp pesto alfredo

playing catch up over here.  this week has been hectic and full and just plain exhausting.  
finally I am seeing the light at the end of all this sickness.
I think.
I might have just jinxed it. 
lets pray not.
anyway.. finding motivation to cook has bee sparse- we've been eating a lot of soup and salad full of whatever is in the fridge that is one day away from being questionable. 
thats kinda what I did here with this yummy pasta dish.  I had two different half empty bags of dry pasta that I needed to use up- and while normally we stick to the whole grain option, I mixed in some regular pasta, too!  just to use it all up at once and not buy another bag to open and let sit on my pantry shelf.  when we think protein/carbs we think shrimp + pasta.  its one of our favorite combinations- but!  this would be just as delicious with chicken  
(grilled?  baked? sautéed?  all of the above.)
typically you will find recipes for alfredo made with heavy cream, but we are approaching bathing suit season and a trip to Cabo with the mister (yaas!) so I wanted something lighter but just as creamy and delicious.  the sauce thickens a little as it is simmering but it really thickens up from the starch of the cooked pasta after you add it in.. which is why its important to not rinse your pasta after its cooked! it helps the sauce stick to the noodles:)
shrimp pesto alfredo
serves 4-6
16 oz pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
3-5 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 pound fresh or frozen medium size shrimp  
half pound fresh asparagus, cut into fourths
2 cups sweet cherry tomatoes
2/3 cup basil pesto
1 cup half and half 
3/4  cup shaved parmesan cheese
salt + pepper to taste
basil for garnish
--
bring a large pot of salted water to boil.  add the noddles, stirring to avoid sticking.  cook according to packaged directions- usually about 8-10 minutes depending on your pasta shape.  drain and set aside.

while the pasta cooks, turn your olive oil around in a large skillet pan.  add the garlic and shrimp, sautéing until garlic is fragrant and the shrimp starts to turn pink.  stir in the cherry tomatoes and asparagus.  season with salt and pepper.  cook until the asparagus is soft and the cherry tomatoes start to pop and cook down.  pour in the half and half and bring to a low boil.  stir in the pesto and parmesan cheese, mixing until combined.  bring to a boil and cook until sauce is thickened.  add the cooked pasta,  folding in with a large spoon or rubber spatula carful not to break the tomatoes.  garnish with shredded basil and enjoy!  




dinner is served!  less than 30 minutes from start to finish!  hows that for a weeknight meal? 
I can bet you might have at least half of these ingredients already on hand.  

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