Spaghettini With Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Shrimp
- Servings: 3 to 4 as a main dish, 4 to 6 as a generous side.
This easy weeknight pasta uses either cherry or grape tomatoes which are a year-round option, especially during the winter when these can be the only tomatoes worth buying.
If you buy the shrimp already cleaned and ready to cook, this dinner can be made in about a half hour, or in the time it takes to roast the tomatoes.
Remember that shrimp cooks quickly and becomes tough if overcooked, so take care when cooking it. If you buy smaller shrimp, cook them for less time than in the recipe.
I like this combination of ingredients best with spaghettini which is a slightly thin spaghetti with more body than capellini, or angel hair pasta which can all too easily over-cook. but it could also work with a short pasta like farfalle or penne.
- 4 to 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 pints cherry or grape tomatoes
- 4 large cloves garlic, peeled and cut into very thin slices
- Dried red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 pounds large or jumbo shrimp, preferably wild, peeled and cleaned
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound spaghettini
- Preheat the oven to 400° F.
- Place the tomatoes, in a single layer, in a large rimmed sheet pan.
- Add the thin slices of garlic.
- Drizzle the pan with 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil and season with a generous pinch of salt, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and several grinds of black pepper. Using your clean hands, toss the tomatoes and garlic slices so that they're coated with the oil and seasonings but remain in a single layer.
- Roast, shaking the pan occasionally, until the tomatoes are cracked, very soft and have begun to shrink, and the garlic has softened, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a serving bowl large enough for the entire dish.
- In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- In the same rimmed sheet pan that you have wiped clean of any tomato juice (you don't want to cook the shrimp in moisture), place the shrimp in a single layer, drizzle with 2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil and season with a pinch of salt and lots of black pepper. Toss to coat but leave in a single layer.
- Roast in the same 400° F oven for 5 to 6 minutes. Be careful to not overcook.
- Remove from the oven and add the shrimp to the serving bowl with the tomatoes and garlic.
- Cook the spaghettini until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain and add to the serving bowl and toss with the tomato, garlic and shrimp.
- Serve immediately or at room temperature.
Tip: In Italian cuisine, seafood is usually not seasoned with grated cheese but food is acutely personal so if you like your pasta with grate parmigiano reggiano, that is your choice. Just go light-handed so that you don't overwhelm the shrimp's delicate flavor.