Saturday, February 18, 2012

Thinking Of Summer...Linguini With Shrimp And Lemon Oil

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I was up until 3:00 am last night reading the Williams Sonoma catalogue, not because it was that good, just because I couldn't sleep. This recipe struck my fancy and I decided to make it for dinner tonight.  My daughter, who enjoys withholding her praises even when things turn out exceptionally well, couldn't stop raving about it and telling me it was a keeper.  So there you have it...on a scale of 1 to 10,  I think what she meant was it was an 11.

It is truly a delightful pasta, very lemony and perfect for lunch or summer.  I have to say I cheated and used a California Meyer lemon infused oil.  I am going back tomorrow to buy a few bottles to keep in the pantry for the coming months.  You can find lemon oil at most specialty stores or, as I did, at Homegoods.   You can also make your own, as detailed below. Nothing to it.

I also did not make my own pasta, using instead Barilla linguini.  But it's up to you, whether you go the long route or the short one, as I did, this dish is spectacular!

In Sicily’s fishing villages, rustic handmade pasta is tossed with olive oil, garlic and fresh seafood. It’s all about casual simplicity—and making the most of the day’s catch. Inspired by that tradition, we created this recipe using prawns and lemon-infused olive oil. For the best results, make your own pasta from scratch.


  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 3/4 lb. spaghetti or linguini
  • 1 1/4 cups olive oil
  • 2 lemons, 1 zested
  • 3 cups coarse bread crumbs(I used Panko)
  • 2 lb. prawns, peeled and deveined
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. anchovy paste
  • 1/4 cup capers, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for serving (optional) I did not use


Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Salt the water, add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain the pasta in a colander, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water. Rinse the pasta with cool water; set aside.

Pour 1 cup of the olive oil into a small saucepan. Using a knife, cut the peel off 1 lemon and add the peel to the pan. Set over medium heat and heat the oil until just warm. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand for 30 minutes. Strain the lemon oil; set aside.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 1/4 cup plain olive oil. Add the bread crumbs and cook, stirring, until browned and toasted, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

Wipe out the sauté pan, set over medium-high heat and warm 1 Tbs. of the lemon oil. Season the prawns with salt and pepper. Add half of the prawns to the pan and cook until pink and opaque throughout, 1 to 2 minutes per side; stir in 1 tsp. of the garlic during the last 30 seconds of cooking. Transfer the prawns to a bowl. Wipe out the pan and repeat with 1 Tbs. of the lemon oil, the remaining prawns and 1 tsp. garlic. Toss the prawns with the lemon juice.

In the same pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the lemon oil. Add the anchovy paste and stir until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Add 1/2 cup of the reserved cooking water, the pasta, capers and lemon zest and stir until heated through, adding more cooking water as needed. Transfer to a platter. Top with the prawns, bread crumbs and parsley. Drizzle with some of the lemon oil (reserve the remaining oil for another use). Sprinkle with cheese and serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.

Recipe adapted from Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.
Photos Lindaraxa


  1. It looks good and with the temperatures we've had a light pasta like this seems a more likely supper than a hearty bowl of soup!

  2. Martha,

    My daughter and I worked in the garden the last couple of tee shirts!

  3. Sounds wonderful! Living on the Gulf Coast, I have access to fresh shrimp every day of the week. I'll definitely be trying this recipe very soon.

  4. I too live near the Gulf Coast and have access to freshly caught shrimp year round. This looks absolutely divine and I will be trying this very soon.


  5. this is such a delicious sounding pasta dish...thanks for sharing! so many great recipes here :)

  6. I was having roasted garlic pasta that night, also simple and delicious, with a side of rappini. I remember a class I took many moons ago with Marcella Hazan and her telling us about buying dried pasta--some is air-dried like De Cecco and preferred, she said; and others are oven-dried, like Barilla. I always use De Cecco now, and I never make my own--it's a shortcut I don't mind.

  7. Tracy and Carolyn you are both so lucky and here I am landlocked!

    Jenn, thank you, enjoy!


    Did not know the difference between Barilla and De Cecco although I buy the latter sometimes. Thanks for the update!


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