Those of you who know me from New England probably remember a restaurant/bar called LJ’s. I remember (or at least partially remember) seeing Eric’s old band, Shockwave, playing there and dancing the night away with friends. I also recall getting there early sometimes and having dinner (yes, there was a time in my life when I ate “restaurant food”). My favorite item on the menu was their Shrimp Scampi. Looking back I remember that on the nights when I would order that for dinner, it was well into the night before I could drag my butt out of the chair and dance. The Scampi was delicious but it sat like brick in my stomach and made me feel more like lying down than dancing. On a side note – something I never thought of back then – I must have reeked of garlic after eating that meal, it’s a good thing Eric usually ate the same thing….a belated apology to anyone he or I may have offended with our garlic breath 😳 Anyway; this version of Scampi will not make you want to lie down and nap and it is (in my humble opinion) every bit as delicious as the LJ’s version….it will however give you serious garlic breath!
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons margarine (I use Smart Balance Light)
1 – 2 oz. can anchovies, minced
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 leaves fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 cups fat free, low-sodium chicken broth
1 lb. medium shrimp, raw, peeled and deveined
1 lb. whole wheat linguine, cooked according to package directions (no salt)
Heat the olive oil over medium in a skillet, melt in the butter. Add anchovies, garlic, pepper flakes, basil, and parsley. Saute until the anchovies are melted and the garlic is soft. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add shrimp, reduce heat to simmer and cook for about 7 – 10 minutes (until the shrimp are firm). Pour entire mixture over cooked pasta; mix well.
I love pesto, it’s delicious and really quick and easy to make. Pesto is one of the very first things I ever learned to make when I was about 12. At that time I didn’t even know it was called pesto. I found the recipe in a “teen” magazine and they called it green spaghetti. I’ve included my pesto recipe at the bottom; but you could also use a store-bought version, just look for one with only the basic ingredients and be sure it uses only extra virgin olive oil.
This recipe combines pesto with salmon and whole wheat pasta for a great tasting and good for you dinner that comes together in the time it takes to boil the pasta (even if you make your own pesto). Don’t be afraid of the 13 grams of fat, this is healthy fat, the kind your body needs 😀
Pesto Salmon Pasta
12 oz. salmon
1/4 cup pesto (recipe below)
1 – 14 1/2 oz. can diced tomatoes (no salt added)
1 – 16 oz. package whole wheat rotini (or any short cut pasta), cooked according to package directions (no salt added)
Place salmon into a frying pan (that has been sprayed with cooking spray) over medium-high heat. Break up the salmon into small pieces as it cooks. After about 3-4 minutes add in 2 Tablespoons of the pesto and continue cooking and stirring until the salmon is completely cooked through. Add in the diced tomatoes and cook for an additional minute or two, just until the tomatoes are heated. Mix the remaining 2 Tablespoons of pesto with the cooked pasta. Pour salmon mixture over the cooked pasta, toss and enjoy!
2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1/4 cup low-fat grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons walnuts, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
Place basil leaves into a food processor and blend until well chopped. Add each additional ingredient one at a time, blending well after each addition. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides occasionally.