Recipe and photo by Yewande Komolafe
This is a simple, snappy, weeknight pasta dish that highlights the complementary qualities of our spot prawns — sweetness and umami-richness. To give them the proper stage on which to shine, this recipe keeps it light — fresh garlic, lemon zest and juice, finely chopped herbs and a dash of red pepper flakes. Your favorite long pasta — linguine, fettuccine, or spaghetti — will all work well here. If you have different onions, you can sub these in for shallots. You can also add slivered snap peas or asparagus at the tail end of the cooking process — any spring-forward ingredients you have on hand will do!
Time: 45 minutes
1 pound spaghetti
Salt and black pepper
¼ cup dill chopped
¼ cup parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound spot prawns, defrosted
2 small shallots, peeled and minced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon chili flakes
¾ cup white wine
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to the instructions on the packet until just al dente. Drain the cooked pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid to use later. In a small bowl, combine the chopped parsley, dill and lemon zest, set aside.
2. In a large saucepan or dutch oven over high heat, heat up 2 tablespoons olive oil until shimmering.
3. Add in the spot prawns and cook without moving for 2 minutes. Move prawns to a plate and reduce heat to medium-high.
4. Add in the remaining olive oil, shallots and garlic. Cook until just softened, about 2-3 minutes.
5. Add in the chili flakes and white wine. Simmer until the sauce is reduced in volume and alcohol is cooked off, about 3 minutes.
6. Return the spot prawns to the pan plus any juices. Add in the cooked pasta and about ½ cup of the reserved cooking liquid. Toss the pasta and prawns in the sauce until fully coated, adding more reserved cooking liquid if necessary.
7. Season to taste with salt and cracked black pepper. Add in several squeezes of juice from the zested lemon, add in the butter, and toss to coat.
8. Divide pasta and prawns among bowls. Serve topped with the lemon-parsley garnish and additional wedges of lemon for squeezing.
Helpful Notes: Make sure to reserve the pasta water. You’ll want to add back a ladle of it to the sauté pan, as that’s going to give you a nice creaminess that also helps marry the flavors.
Peeling the spot prawns ahead will work fine, but we recommend keeping the shells on as they will lend a lot of flavor to the dish. For shells on, you’ll need to sear at a slightly higher heat than you would with peeled prawns, so the shells break down and become delightfully crisp.