Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Linguine with Grilled Shrimp & Creamy Bacon Alfredo

I bought these huge shrimp on sale and wanted to really showcase them, so I decided to throw them on the grill and then incorporate them into a pasta dish.

I was planning to make a standard alfredo sauce but ended up using a bit of bacon (whenever I start wondering what to put in something, my mind always turns to bacon!) and provolone to accentuate the smoky flavor of the grilled shrimp.  Voila!

1/2 box linguine
1 lb cleaned, raw shrimp in the shell (they taste better and cook more evenly if grilled in the shell)
4 slices of bacon , cooked and diced
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 small white onion, diced
1 red bell pepper
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/3 cup provolone cheese
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp corn starch
Salt & pepper to taste

Start by cooking the bacon in a frying pan on medium heat.  Do not overcook - you don't want it crispy, simple cooked.  Once bacon is done (about 5-10 minutes, depending on your stove), remove from pan, and set on paper towels to drain oil.  When bacon is cool, dice and discard any really fatty parts.

Slice red pepper in half and remove seeds and ribs (inside white lining of pepper).  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Heat grill to high.  Place red pepper on grill.  While pepper is grilling, pat shrimp dry and drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Turn red pepper over and then place shrimp on grill.  Grill shrimp for about 2 minutes per side, until shells turn pink. Remove the shrimp and the pepper from the grill and let rest.

In a medium saute pan, melt butter and add chopped onion and diced garlic.  Cook on low heat until onion is translucent.  Add heavy cream and both types of cheese and cook until the sauce is hot and the cheese is melted.

Chop or julienne grilled pepper and add to pan.  Then add the diced bacon and season with salt and black pepper to taste. You will probably need to add a bit of corn starch to thicken the sauce - do this very slowly by sprinkling it in and quickly stirring it so that you don't get any lumps.

Finally, cook pasta according to package directions.  Spoon sauce over noodles, add shrimp, and serve!

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