Cristina Ferrare's Shrimp Pasta and Asparagus Pesto

Cristina Ferrare's Shrimp Pasta and Asparagus Pesto


  • 8 oz. spaghetti
  • 10.5 oz asparagus
  • 1 pound large shrimp, rinsed, peeled, and deveined
  • Pinch freshly ground pepper
  • 1 (1/2-inch thick) piece pancetta (your deli server can slice you a piece 1/2-inch thick), cut into small pieces
  • 6 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 bunch (approx. 2 cups) fresh basil leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbsp. pine nuts
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup + 3 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Pinch freshly ground pepper

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 375° F.
  2. Make the spaghetti according to package directions.
  3. On a baking sheet, arrange the shrimp in one layer. Drizzle 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil over the top and add a pinch of kosher salt and cracked black pepper. Mix to coat the shrimp with the oil. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven, cover lightly with foil, and set aside.
  4. In a cold cast-iron skillet or frying pan, add the pancetta, and turn the heat to medium. Sauté the pancetta until it just starts to turn crispy. Add the sage leaves and saute until the pancetta is crispy-crunchy. Add the roasted shrimp and mix.
  5. Clean the asparagus and remove the stems. Blanche them for 3-5 minutes and rinse under cold water.
  6. In a food processor, mix together the basil leaves, garlic cloves, butter, pine nuts, salt, and pepper to make the pesto.
  7. In a large bowl, mix the spaghetti with the pesto sauce and cheese. Keep 2 Tbsp. pesto for decoration.
  8. Place a ring mold in the middle of a plate.
  9. Twirl some spaghetti and place in the bottom of the mold and about ⅔ up the side.
  10. Add a layer of shrimp.
  11. Add another layer of spaghetti and some pesto sauce on the top.
  12. Decorate with shrimp and asparagus.
  13. Sprinkle with olive oil and some roasted pine nuts.

Cristina Cooks - Shrimp Pasta And Asparagus Pesto

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