Since full-timing, this is my outlet where I can let loose of my creative juices. Its where I can make a mess and be proud of it because of the masterpiece I’ve plated that tastes like it belongs in a five star restaurant. Here, I will be sharing my Shrimp & Spinach Garlic Herb Béchamel Sauce on Penne Pasta.
Recently, I bought this new huge, non-stick, induction-safe pan (with heavy glass lid) with a grill pan and lid for about $70 (free S&H because we’re Prime members) total. It was an Amazon ‘Deal of the Day’. So glad I snagged it. I love getting new galley tools; they make me giddy inside!
Since it was cold and rainy December day while we were in Pahrump, Nevada, I decided to put this bad boy to work by creating an exquisite pasta dish that would give a five-star restaurant chef a run for their money…well, a girl can dream, right?
The funny thing is, I can boastfully admit, I can put out some amazing dishes however, if you asked me what I made, I’d say something to the effect, ‘shrimp, spinach, tomato, with wine and broth and some sort of gravy sauce’. I really need to learn culinary terms before creating dishes so I can make them sound awesome just by titles alone…but I digress, let’s just get to this incredibly delicious pasta dish.
1 lb Shrimp
3 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Cup Grape Tomatoes
1 Tbsp Garlic Paste
1 Tbsp Italian Herb Paste
1 Pkt Ranch Dressing Mix
1 Cup White Wine
1 1/2 Cup Chicken Broth
1 Bag Fresh Spinach Leaves
4 oz Goat Cheese (not pictured)
Penne Pasta (or your choice)
Sea salt & fresh ground pepper (to suit individual
Clean, de-vein and pat dry shrimp; remove all shells (even on tails).
Clean, pat dry and halve grape tomatoes
Wash and pat dry spinach leaves
Make flour/water mixture for thickening; set aside
In a medium sauce pan, I brought a 3 quarts of water to boil and added in the pasta; cooked to tenderness. We like it tender and soft; not al dente but not mushy either. Drain pasta, cover and put aside. (Do not rinse pasta – by not rinsing, it allows the sauce to adhere to the pasta)
In my big pan, I drizzled in my olive oil, shrimp, S&P, Italian Herbs and Garlic Pastes; cooked on medium high (number 8 on my induction cooktop). You don’t want to overcook shrimp otherwise, it will become tough and chewy.
Sprinkle in ranch dressing packet and stir in.
I added in the wine to reduce the alcohol. I then add in the chicken broth and allow to simmer (number 4 on cooktop) for about 5 minutes.
I add in the halved grape tomatoes and simmer another 5 minutes;
…then add in fresh spinach; simmering until totally wilted.
After spinach has been wilted and tomato skins have partially peeled from their flesh, I add in the goat cheese and stir until all chunks and crumbs are completely melted and sauce is smooth. Reduce heat to medium low (number 2 on induction).
I then add in my flour/water mixture to thicken the sauce mixture. It will thicken quickly. You don’t want it really thick, just enough to add a smooth consistency to stick to the pasta. Cook about a minute or two more…
…and here’s what you call my “Shrimp & Spinach Garlic Herb Béchamel Sauce!
I plated the pasta and spooned the sauce; making sure there were ample portions of shrimp, tomatoes and spinach. I sprinkled freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top. Salt and Pepper to taste. Serve with your favorite wine…or beer…or both.
Serve with a huge smile and say “I did this!”
Bon Appétit !