Cooking with Leeks

photo by sara

This delicious recipe is from Real Simple and is supremely forgiving.  Here is the recipe straight from the magazine:

12 ounces gemelli, fusilli, or some other short pasta
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 leeks (white and light green parts only), cut into half-moons
kosher salt and black pepper
1 pound peeled and deveined medium shrimp
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
3/4 cup heavy cream
10 ounces baby spinach (about 12 cups)

Cook the pasta according to the package directions; drain and return it to the pot.
Meanwhile, heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leeks have softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and lemon zest and cook, tossing frequently, until the shrimp is opaque throughout, 4 to 5 minutes more.
Add the cream and ½ teaspoon salt to the pasta in the pot and cook over medium heat, stirring, until slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the shrimp mixture and the spinach and toss to combine.

Cook's Notes: {that's me}
 - Feel free to be lenient with the measurements.  I used more pasta and shrimp and less spinach.
 - mix the spinach in with the pasta and cream when you add the shrimp to the skillet.  This prevents the shrimp from over cooking.
 - adding crisp white wine to the skillet and/or parmesan cheese to the pasta pot will only make this dish more fantastic.


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