Friday, January 8, 2010

Linguine with Crab and Peppers

I know. I know. This is fettuccine, not linguine. It was either that or spaghetti, which would have been a major pasta foul. I had my doubts about this dish, but I love crab, and all the other ingredients, so why wouldn't they work well together? This recipe calls for that one ingredient that comes up on occasion - that one thing that makes you go, "Oh yeah ... that." I like that. That always works well in sauces and soups. That could even be a secret ingredient! Like anchovies or Worcestershire sauce. Clam juice! That's right, I said it. So, you undercook the pasta, throw it in with the peppers and garlic (that cooked in butter!), and add clam juice and a bit of pasta water to finish. Awesome. Oh yeah, wine too. Sprinkle on some parsley, pine nuts and Parmesan (you save the P items for last), and you are ready to eat.

Oh yeah, I hecka used canned crab (sorry Dad). I am all for laboring over a real crab, and I do get the flavor difference, but on a weeknight? With Junior at my feet and blogging to do? No. We still picked a bit of shell out of our teeth, so the authenticity was totally there.

There's one big BUT with this dish. I keep pushing the envelope on this lesson that I have learned repeatedly, thinking Oh, no, not this time. Not with this fish. This one is different. When will I truly learn that Fish is NOT a Good Choice for Leftovers?! Sam won't even eat his breaded tilapia if it's from the day before. You can see it in his eyes: the recognition that the not-so-crunchy crunch is because it has been reheated. Noooooo. So, don't go for leftover crab. It didn't smell as bad as the trout, but still unpleasant.

Speaking of the trout, I just revisited it as I was cleaning the sink! What? The metal, or maybe the growth that was already in the sink (gross), absorbed the scent from almost a week ago, and then released it when I was scrubbing with Bon Ami. Yum.

I had to make something to go with the linguine as a veggie - a few strips of pepper do not a serving make. I wilted some kale and threw on the vinaigrette and gorgonzola from the Winter Salad we had with the Morgans. I remembered the candied nuts after I took the photo, but before digging in. Close one.

I love greens, don't you? And they are so good for you, so that's a bonus. I find kale to be the most palatable. Oh, chard too. Sorry, chard; you are the prettiest. Have you had dino kale? I think it goes by a few different names, but it looks like a green reptile purse or something. It's delicious as well. Purple kale, too. I have tried beet, mustard, turnip, and dandelion greens - that is ascending bitterness order there - and they all have their place, for sure, but that place should be in a sauce or among pork pieces of some sort. And, the mother of greens, collards! This is one tough, f'ing green. You want to eat the stems without at least an hour of cooking? Good luck. It's winter hardy, and it shows. I think I always serve collards cooked in bacon fat and chicken stock, with bacon sprinkled on at the end. I have never cooked the stems, and I don't intend to.

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