Spaghetti with Cilantro-Pistachio Pesto and Shrimp

March  4, 2015
1 Ratings
  • Serves 2
Author Notes

After a series of events led to an excess amount of Cilantro in my kitchen, I set out to make pesto entirely made up of things already on hand. Though I love shrimp in this dish, any meat or no meat at all would be just as delicious. Easily adapted to serve just 1, or many, and any leftover cilantro pesto can be used again later. —kedivine

What You'll Need
  • Pesto
  • two big handfuls of cilantro, stems and all
  • 25 roasted, shelled pistachios
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 a lime, juiced
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • Pasta
  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 12 peeled, deveined shrimp (the largest you can find!)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • 2 handfuls cherry tomatoes, halved
  1. Get your spaghetti going in a pot of heavily salted water, and cook until al dente – reserving about a half a cup of pasta water.
  2. While you wait for you water to boil, make your pesto. Combine all of the pesto ingredients in a food processor, and alternate between pulse and scraping down the sides – adding the olive oil last – until combined into a paste.
  3. Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Heat a 12 inch stainless steel sauté pan to medium high heat, and after a few minutes coat the bottom with olive oil (should be about 1 ½ tbsp.)
  4. Once the oil is hot, arrange the shrimp evenly in the pan a cook for about 3-4 minutes per side (depending on how big) and set aside.
  5. Turn down the heat to medium and deglaze the pan with 2 tbsp. of dry white wine (I used a pinot grigio) and scrape up any fond or bits that have accumulated.
  6. Toss in your cherry tomatoes into the pan and toss for 1-2 minutes. Add in your cooked pasta, a few splashes of pasta water, and two heaping tbsp. of your cilantro pesto. Stir this all around and toss the pan to combine for another 2 minutes or so.
  7. Divide the pasta between two bowls and arrange the shrimp on top. Top with a sprig of cilantro each and serve!

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