Friday, November 15, 2013

Cajun Shrimp Pasta

Believe it or not, I managed to actually cook a bona-fide meal!  Wohoo!!  I even set up G-man's bouncy chair in the kitchen (safely out of the way of culinary dangers) so he and I could hang out while I was cooking.  Somewhat unfortunately, though, this leftovers container is the only pic I have of it.  Oh well.  A testament to how tasty it was!

Since my lengthy blogging hiatus, Pinterest seems to have soared in popularity.  I'm not immune; I even have a board linking back to this blog, showcasing my favourite pics.  No harm there!  I bring up Pinterest because Hubs' mom posted this recipe the other day, and it caught my eye.  Stupid-simple?  Spicy?  Tasty-looking?  Using ingredients I usually have around the house?  Winner!

Here's the pic from the recipe at this site.  MUCH better than mine (and looks far more appetizing!)
Of course, I can't leave well enough alone.  I had to muck with both the recipe and the method of preparation (the original involving the use of chicken, which isn't Hubs' favourite, and far too many dishes for my liking.  Ain't nobody got time to wash all that!).  This is my slightly altered version!

 Cajun Shrimp Pasta
Adapted from

Serves 4, with leftovers

Cajun Blackening Seasoning:
  • 2 tsp paprika (smoked or sweet)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp dried oregan
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • freshly cracked pepper (20-25 cranks of a mill)
For the Pasta:
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper
  • 2 small cooking onions
  • 1 lb frozen raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails off (especially if you're Hubs)
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes (fire-roasted if you have 'em; I didn't)
  • 1 large scoop (maybe 1/4 cup?) cream cheese
  • 12 oz (or ~330 g, or ~3/4 of a 1 lb package, or whatever you can estimate) linguine
  • 3 green onions
  1. Combine the herbs and spices for the blackened seasoning in a bowl.
  2. Prepare a large pot of water for the pasta. Bring it to a boil over high heat and then add the pasta. Cook the pasta until tender and then drain in a colander.
  3. Meanwhile, thinly slice the bell peppers and cooking onion. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Once the skillet is hot and the butter is melted, add the sliced vegetables, and sauté until they are tender.  Add the shrimp and half of the blackened seasoning.  Cook until shrimp are cooked through (pink, firm, and opaque all the way through). 
  4. Turn the heat under the skillet down to medium low. Add the can of tomatoes (with their juice) and the second half of the blackened seasoning. Add the cream cheese. Stir the mixture until the cream cheese has melted and created a creamy sauce.
  5. If your skillet is extra large, add the cooked pasta to the skillet and toss to combine with the shrimp, vegetables, and sauce. If your skillet is smaller, you can add the drained pasta back to the large pot it was cooked in (with the heat turned off), then add the shrimp, vegetables, and sauce to the pot and stir to combine.
  6. Slice the green onions and sprinkle over top before serving.

Tastiness, and took only about a half an hour at best.  Served this to my parents (now known as "the Nonni", Italian for grandparents) as a small token of gratitude for everything they've done for us since G-man arrived.  Of course they insisted that it wasn't necessary (and Nonna even did the dishes), but that's why we love 'em.  Plus, even though I'm a busy new mom, I can't leave behind my tradition of using friends and family members as guinea pigs for all my new recipes!

Looking forward to making some freezer-friendly baked pasta casseroles for her & her friends' new little families,

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