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Help me better my Spicy Shrimp Pasta recipe

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Making dinner for my new BF tonight. Basically a Cajun seasoned shrimp in a garlic white wine sauce with fire roasted tomatoes and red pepper flakes. I was thinking to dice up a little mushroom and add in a diced up hot link or andouille sausage. Any suggestions on a smokey spicy meat to add in? I'm open to ideas..fresh basil? Should I serve with Angel Hair or Fettucine noodles? How can I make this special?

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  1. It's a no no to add any cheese to this type of a dish, correct?

    1 Reply
    1. re: missmodular818

      Usually Italians consider fish and cheese to be a no-no, but I would not consider this to be an Italian dish, so I wouldn't worry about it.

    2. I'd grill the sausages and serve them on the side. They'd probably be fine as part of the dish....but could change the balance of flavors a bit and overpower it. Don't know basil if the right herb for cajun flavors. Depends on what seasoning is used with the shrimp...or otherwise in the dish. That might be enough. Angel hair might be a little delicate for a robust sauce; I'd go with a bigger noodle.

      1. You can't go wrong by adding some andouille or chorizo in there. Spicy pork and shrimp are an amazing combo. I'm not a big fan of mushrooms with seafood, so I would say no to that idea. The type of pasta should pair with the other ingredients. If you have fairly large pieces of sausage and shrimp, I would go with penne or rigatoni so you can get a forkfull in every bite. Thin noodles would require a lot of fork twirling and you'd be likely to end up with all the meat/veggie pieces at the bottom of the bowl.

        2 Replies
        1. re: d8200

          +1 on the rigatoni. I've made an unlikely sounding Cajun pasta sort of modelled on jambalaya, had no real hopes of it being decent, and was amazed to find it came out delicious. Rigatoni was just the right choice with the large chunks of chicken and sausage. It held the sauce well, too.

          1. re: rockycat

            I vote chorizo as well - but Mexican chorizo, which is raw. You can saute it and crumble it, which means small pieces in each bite as well as wonderful rendered fat to flavor the whole dish.

        2. I think I would use bucatini or fusilli. And I think the sausage would be great in there but use it sparingly. Technically, one shouldn't use cheese with seafood but I say -go for it. I put cheese on scampi all the time & love it. But then I am a big believer in doing what tastes good to you & to hell with the rules. I am not sure what type of fresh herb would work except maybe parsley. I don't see basil with cajun flavors.

          1. Have you considered adding a little pepper (traditionally, green bell, but you could go jalapeno), celery and onion to the mix to kick up the authentic Cajun angle? Maybe pancetta, black pepper (keep tasting and adjusting) and smoked paprika, too?

            1. How did this dish come out? I'm interested to hear which methods you may have tried.