Egg fettuccine with shrimp, fresh tomatoes, spinach and garlic

Shipping is a terrible thing to do to vegetables.  They probably get jet-lagged, just like people.  ~Elizabeth Berry

I am on vacation now with friends – visiting Mediterranean coast in Spain. And there are no such things as jet-lagged vegetables! They are simply grown here – always fresh and actually tasting like the real ones – just how they are supposed to be! To some people it may look funny, but when buying my tomatoes I love to smell them! To me that’s how a perfect dish is born – starting with getting quality ingredients. Unfortunately today the weather wasn’t treating us too well – a bit chilly and raining.

Lunch time asked for something light, but warm and comforting – like pasta with fresh local ingredients – tomatoes, spinach and of course seafood. With such a large selection it took me a while at the fishmonger’s. There you can find almost anything your heart desires! Needless to say, I am looking at the Mediterranean sea as I am writing this – the source where most of that seafood came from. The rest came from the Atlantic ocean, which is also close by… 

Ingredients (serving 2):
* ~150 g egg fettuccine
* 2 super ripe tomatoes
* 2 handfuls of spinach
* ~100 g cooked shrimp
* 3-5 garlic cloves
* Olive oil
* Salt’n’pepper
Egg pasta cooks super quickly. 2-3 minutes and it is done al dente. I like to cook it a tiny bit less for perfection – later on it is tossed with the sauce, so cooks a bit more.
Start preparing the sauce. Chop the garlic, dice tomatoes. For a perfect dish I wanted to get the skin off and it is very easy to do that – cut the skin a bit and through tomatoes in hot water for up to 30 seconds. This time though tomatoes were too ripe. Can’t complain about that :).
Start a pot of water on the stove for pasta.
In the meantime heat another pot on the stove for the sauce. Add a few tablespoons of olive oil and before it gets too hot, right afterwards I add garlic and tomatoes together. The garlic doesn’t fry, becomes tender and adds the desired fragrancy to the sauce. Add the shrimp and spinach, a bit of salt to taste. Let it cook for a few minutes on a medium heat.
The water should be boiling by now. Add pasta, mix a bit so it doesn’t stick and make sure to try it after 1,5-2 minutes in order to get the right texture.
When eating good pasta at restaurants, I always wondered how they incorporate pasta and sauce altogether so well. Usually for me it used to end up as a mixture of two different things, with some tie missing. There is a little secret to achieve that. Once the pasta is done, don’t drain it – get it out of water with a slotted spoon and add to the sauce, mix well and add a generous scoup of water the past was boiling in. And that’s what makes pasta so well incorporated with the sauce and that good!
Sprinkle some fresh ground pepper and enjoy! 


Bon appétit!


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