A couple of Sundays ago I was feeling rather inspired on the cooking front. I had an idea of what I wanted to prepare for dinner and I had a vague idea how I was going to put it together, but I had no recipe to follow – and surprisingly it all worked out pretty well!
I had found this pre-made squid ink pasta at our local Superama (equivalent of cold storage in Singapore) and while I was in Costco I saw these lovely plump tiger prawns as well as a bag of frozen scallops – slowly this dish was starting to come together in my mind.
I did not follow any instructions per say but used ideas from various cookbooks and blogs and I have to say that it turned out really well, and I would definitely make this in the future – the black pasta with the contrasting flesh of the scallops and prawns are quite dramatic.
However, if I was going to serve this at a dinner party I would need to make some changes. Although the black pasta looks rather striking, the fact that it is pre-made means it loses all its ocean flavour which is such a pity. At the end of the day, it tasted exactly the same as normal pasta. Apart from making your own squid-ink pasta, I am not sure if it would be possible to buy it fresh? Somehow I don’t think so here in Mexico, but I am sure you can in the US or UK (you can get everything over there!!)
Also, the tiger prawns I bought in Costco were disappointing – although large and plump, they lacked huge amounts of flavour – which I think is due to the fact that they had already been beheaded (I don’t know if that is the right term…but you understand what I mean!). In the future, I will buy fresh prawns from San Juan Market with their heads as I think this will make a big difference.
But for a quick Sunday meal – this was spot on! As usual when I throw something together I don’t have the exact measurements – but for a dish like this I don’t think it is that important, however here are the guidelines:
Ingredients: 3-4 people
- Squid-ink pasta
- Fresh prawns
- Half an onion, sliced
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, grated
- a thumb of ginger, grated
- Whole red chilli – finely sliced
- Red Capsicum, sliced
- Cup of wine
- Parsley, chopped
- Salt & Pepper for seasoning
- Olive oil
First sear the scallops in a very hot non-stick pan. Depending on the size of the scallops, they only need 1-2 minutes on each side – you don’t want to over do it, as then they will become rubbery. You really want to get a nice brown crust on them. Set them aside.
In another pan, heat the olive oil. When hot add the onions and fry for a few minutes until clear, than add the garlic, ginger, chili and stir for a few minutes. Throw in the capsicum, do a quick turn in the pan and add the wine (you don’t want the garlic to burn)
Once the wine is in, throw in the prawns, stirring them around in the juices, and then put a lid on the pan for about 3-4 minutes or when ever they turn fully pink. Shake the pan every so often to insure the prawns cook evenly.
Once the prawns have turned pink, add the scallops back into the pan, along with the cooked squid-ink pasta. Try and add a bit of the pasta water in as well – as the starch gives a nice texture to the sauce.
Add the chopped parsley and your ready to serve.