I love coming up with a new recipes but sometimes I struggle to write something “personal” about a dish. It’s not a dish I have a story about, a family recipe, or a dish that was inspired by my travels. More often than not my recipes come from spending hours in the car driving home from work (and there’s a good chance I haven’t eaten all day) and I’m lost in thought about food. Lost in thought about what I want to make for dinner. Other time’s when I’m not working inspiration just comes from what I have in the pantry…. Like a can of artichoke hearts I’ve been staring at for a year.
Sometimes I just want to tell you about the FOOD because honestly that’s what I get so excited about. The crispy fried artichoke hearts… The juicy shrimp… The ZING from the Lemon… Can’t I just tell you that this Fried Artichoke and Shrimp Pasta is the perfect summer night pasta? Best enjoyed on a patio with a nice bottle of wine?
Sometimes I just want to say “EAT THIS because it’s REALLY GOOD FOOD.”
Fried Artichoke and Shrimp Pasta
2 – 14oz can Artichoke Hearts, quartered (drained)
2 Cups Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Bunch of Thyme
1 Pound Jumbo Shrimp (16/20 count)
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 Large shallot, diced (about 3/4 cup)
4 Cloves Garlic, minced or grated
1/4 – 1/2 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 Cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
1 Tablespoons Fresh Oregano, minced
1/4 Cup Capers + Tablespoons Brine
2 Large Lemons
1 Cup Dry White Wine
1 Pound Pasta
Salt and Pepper to taste
Drain the artichoke hearts so that they are almost completely dry. (You can use fresh artichoke hearts if you like…)
Arrange the artichoke hearts in a single layer in the bottom of a large pot.
Pour just enough Extra Virgin Olive Oil over the artichokes to cover them
(for me it was about 2 cups).
Toss in one clove of garlic and the bunch of thyme. Turn the heat on to medium-high and allow the artichoke hearts to fry for about 30 minutes.
After about 10 minutes gently move the artichokes around to make sure they don’t stick to the bottom.
After about 20 minutes carefully turn the artichoke hearts over to ensure even browning
After 30 minutes they are golden brown.
Remove the artichokes from the pot and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels. Season the hot fried artichoke heart with a little salt.
Set the fried artichokes to the side and TRY not to eat them all while you finish cooking 🙂 NOW you see why two cans of artichokes hearts are needed???
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
Drop the pasta in the boiling salted water and cook for one minute less than the box says for aldente.
In a large sauté pan add about 3 Tablespoons of the Artichoke “frying” oil and the 2 tablespoons of butter. Sauté the shallot over medium until tender, about 4 minutes. Then add in the garlic, red pepper flakes, oregano, capers + brine, 3 tablespoons of the Parsley, the juice and zest of one lemon and season with a little salt and pepper. Cook for two minutes until fragrant then add the white wine and reduce by half. Add the shrimp and season again with just a little more salt and pepper cook just until the shrimp turn pink. Add the cooked pasta to the pan with the shrimp and toss to combine (If the pasta looks a little dry add a little of the pasta cooking water).
Add the shrimp and pasta to a large serving bowl and toss in the fried artichoke hearts, remaining parsley, lemon juice, and a little fresh grated parmigiano reggiano.
I enjoyed this pasta with a bottle of my favorite Texas Viognier, from Pedernales Cellers Winery.