Shrimp Pasta Primavera Extravaganza

pastaprimavera2This time of year, this type of dish comes to mind;  fresh vegetables always remind us of spring.    We like to toss together a combination of vegetables and mix it together with some pasta and wine and have a light meal.   Shrimp is a nice touch as well.   However, this time we went a little berserk in the vegetable aisle of the supermarket and decided to add pretty much everything that came to mind.  At one point during the cooking we felt some concern that there were too many  vegetables as they seemed to be piling over the edge of the pot and the pasta had yet to be added (thus the “extravaganza” in the name, and it was no longer what one would call “light”), but this proved to be not an issue at all.   The dish turned out to be a resounding success and all of the flavors worked really well together.  We couldn’t stop piling extra helpings onto our plates and still have plenty of leftovers, which will make the next few days that much better.   Here’s how we did it:


  • 1 lb shrimp, peeled
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 7-8 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 handful green onions, chopped
  • 1-2 cups snow peas
  • 1 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1 small yellow squash, chopped
  • 3 plum tomatoes
  • 1 quart baby bella mushrooms
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into small strips.
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 head broccoli, including stems, cut up into small chunks
  • 1 red pepper, cored seeded and chopped
  • 1 green pepper, cored seeded and chopped
  • 1 lb angel hair pasta
  • 1/4 half and half
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • handful fresh basil chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried orgeno
  • salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper

Start by cleaning and shelling the shrimp, and set aside.  Then begin chopping everything in sight;  it’s generally easier if everything is cut up before the cooking begins.   In a cast iron frying pan, melt half of a stick of butter, and mix in half of the garlic for about a minute or two.  Add the mushrooms, sautée for a few minutes, add about a half a cup of white wine, and cover.   In a larger cooking pan, melt the other half of a stick of butter, add the onions, garlic and scallions, and the shrimp and the other half cup of wine.  Stir until the shrimp starts losing its translucency.   Add the squash, zucchini, and snow peas and sautée for a few minutes, stirring often.  Add the entire mushroom mixture,  the carrots, the broccoli,  the peppers, and tomatoes.   Then add the basil, the thyme, oregano, and salt. Cover and simmer for a few minutes on medium heat and then add the half and half and cover again, continue simmering.   Meanwhile in another pot, boil water with salt and cook the pasta until al dente, and drain.   When the vegetables are well steamed, (it’s best if they are still a little hard), add the pasta, and the grated cheese, stir everything until well combined.   Serve, and add a garnish of grated cheese and freshly ground black pepper.


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