So, after you make some popcorn and some mushrooms, you need a main dish, right? And you need to keep using that mojo de ajo, because you’ve got a lot of it left, right? And now you’re hungry and your whole house smells like garlic and you want to eat NOW and your guests are starving and whining and have appetites the size of RVs and you are afraid if you say dinner will be in an hour, they will tear you limb-from-limb, right?
Never fear! Take some shrimp, pasta, cheese, cilantro, and chilis and toss it with the mojo. It will be delicious. Better yet, take those mushrooms you made, cut open the bag, and toss them into your pasta. It will be awesome. It will be easy. You will eat too much and your farts might smell like garlic, but who cares?
P.S. This is another dish that I wanted to eat so much, I forgot to take pictures of it. But I trust you know what shrimp and pasta looks like. Instead, you are treated to photos of my mise en place for this dinner. So mise en place-y, no?
Garlicky Linguine with Seared Shrimp, Chipotle and Queso Anejo
Pasta al Mojo de Ajo con Camarones, Chipotle y Queso Anejo
Serves 8 as a first course, 4 to 6 as a main dish
- 2/3 cup Slow-Cooked Garlic Mojo (stir before measuring)
- 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and (if you wish) deveined
- 1 to 3 canned chipotle chiles en adobo, seeded and finely chopped
- 1 pound dried linguine
- 2 or 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped watercress, parsley or cilantro
- 3/4 cup grated Mexican queso anejo, Parmesan or Romano
- Fill a very large (6- to 8-quart) pot about 2/3 full of water. Add 2 tablespoons salt, cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Meanwhile, spoon 2 tablespoons of the oil from the mojo into a very large (12-inch) skillet. Set over medium-high heat. Pat the shrimp dry, sprinkle with salt and, when the oil is hot, lay them in the skillet. Cook until the shrimp just lose their translucency in the center, about 1 minute per side. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the chopped chile(s) and the rest of the mojo.
- Slide the pasta into the boiling water, stir, then let boil until the pasta is as done as you like—usually about 6 minutes for al dente linguine.
- Remove 1/2 cup of the pasta water, then pour the pasta into a colander set in a sink. Return the pasta and the 1/2 cup water to the pot. Scrape in the shrimp mixture, sprinkle with the chopped watercress, parsley or cilantro, toss together and divide among warm plates. Sprinkle with the grated cheese and serve without hesitation.