I love pasta, potatoes, and bread. There’s no getting around this fact.
Two weeks ago, I told myself that I would significantly cut back on carbs. I haven’t done as well as I planned, and I take full responsibility for that. I’m working through it. Perhaps the reason for my behavior is my perverse obsession with pasta. It’s one of my favorite things to cook and eat! Whenever I think of what I’m going to make for dinner, the words that pop–almost violently–into my head are ziti! fettuccine! ravioli! LASAGNA!
It’s hard to pass-up dishes like these. Like I said, I’m working through it.
This is why it’s so heartbreaking when I go on a weight loss plan. Because pasta dishes–namely those involving a cream sauce–aren’t exactly a suitable dinner option. Let’s face it: No one can go to the Olive Garden, order the fettuccine alfredo, and then be genuinely confused as to why they’re not losing weight. It just doesn’t work like that.
However, because I told myself that I would not deny myself of ANY foods during the holiday season, I decided last night that I would attempt a healthy version of a cream sauce. I know what a lot of you are thinking: There’s nothing healthy about cream sauce.
That being said, I did the best I could.
This is probably a good time to mention that I don’t intend on making this regularly. By no means is this recipe appropriate for days like today. (Today my dinner consisted of 1) chicken, and 2) broccoli. And did I mention I ran a 5k?) This recipe is for days when my carb-cravings must be silenced with pure satisfaction. The days that I ravage the take-out food listings with a disturbed look in my eye.
Mark my words: On days that do not include the aforementioned, I do not recommend this recipe as a staple for weight loss. Consider yourselves warned.
Shrimp Linguine in Lemon Butter Cream Sauce Adapted from AllSands (dot) com‘s food and recipe section.
I sought out this recipe in a desperate attempt to imitate a dish from Café Lucky Noodle in Eugene. It’s called Almond Breast of Chicken, and it is one of the most satisfying meals I have ever had the pleasure of eating at a restaurant. It is “finished in a light, lemon butter cream sauce with linguine pasta and sautéed vegetables,” and I fantasize about it on a daily basis. For my first try at a legitimate cream sauce, I think I did a pretty good job. (I once made an illegitimate cream sauce with no measurements or directions to speak of).
Luckily, I had my friend Alex Bertoni handy to help me make this recipe successful. Unless you’re some sort of superhero, I would suggest making this meal with a partner. The sauce needs a full-time babysitter, a constant eye, and continuous stirring. You don’t want to leave it sitting unattended on the stove, or else it could stick to the pan. Nothing’s worse than a messed-up cream sauce.
- 1 pound whole grain linguine
- 2/3 cups whipping cream
- 2/3 cups fat-free half and half
- 1 Tbs freshly grated lemon rind (about 1 lemon’s worth)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup light margarine
- 2 ½ tsp lemon juice
- 1 ½ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil
- ½ pound shrimp
- lemon wedges, optional
Cook pasta as directed, al dente, then drain.
In a small, heavy saucepan, combine the whipping cream, half and half, lemon rind, and half of the minced garlic. Bring to a boil and boil for 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and whisk in the margarine in small spoonfuls . Whisk until margarine is completely melted.
Meanwhile, combine the shrimp and remaining garlic in a small frying pan. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat until shrimp is completely pink.
When the sauce mixture is ready, add the lemon juice, Parmesan cheese, nutmeg, salt, and pepper (to taste) and continue to whisk over low heat until the cheese is completely melted. Toss with pasta over medium heat for 1 minute.
Toss the finished shrimp with the pasta. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and parmesan if you like.
Yield 2-3 servings.