With summer rapidly coming to an end I have found myself trying to take advantage of all the summer tomatoes, sweet corn, fresh herbs, and veggies. This spicy pasta brings my love of summer vegetables, seafood, and spice into one tasty dish. It comes together easily and has quickly become a favorite of mine.
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
- 2 sprigs oregano chopped
- 1/2 cup basil leaves (about 30 leaves) cut in ribbons or torn
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp red pepper flake
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 lb shrimp
- 1 lb sea scallops
- 1 lb pasta (I used fusilli lunghi)
- 1/2 cup corn (I used 1 leftover grilled corn on the cob)
- 1 medium fennel bulb sliced (about 1.5 cups)
- 1/2 cup white wine
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp Calabrian chilis (I used Trader Joe’s Bamba Sauce)
- 1-1.5 cups freshly grated parmesan
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Start by combining your halved tomatoes, oregano, half of the basil, garlic, red pepper flake, and olive oil into a bowl. Set this aside and let it marinate while you work on the rest of the dish.
Next, start your pasta water. When the water is at a rolling boil, salt the water and toss in your pasta. Cook till al dente. DO NOT DRAIN YOUR PASTA! In a large skillet heat a drizzle of oil into your pan and heat it up. Toss in your shrimp and scallops and cook until seared on both sides and shrimp is opaque. Remove from the pan and set aside.
In the same pan, now add in your fennel and cook down until it begins to soften and caramelize. An easy hack is to add a little water as it cooks so it gets nice and brown without burning.
When your fennel is caramelized, turn the heat down to medium and add your marinated tomato mixture, corn, and Calabrian chilis.
As your tomato/corn/chili mixture begins to heat up, squeeze in your lemon juice and add the white wine. Stir all together. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Next, pull your pasta directly from the pasta pot and add it to your tomato sauce skillet. You do not want to drain your pasta! As you move the pasta out of the water and into your sauce, you want the pasta water that comes with it. This is what helps bring your sauce together when you add your cheese! YUM!
Toss your pasta with your sauce gently and add in your cooked scallops and shrimp. (I like to cut my shrimp and scallops into smaller pieces. Shrimp halved, scallops quartered before adding back into the sauce.) Continue tossing gently and add your cheese a small handful at time. You’ll notice as you continue to toss the pasta mixture with the cheese the sauce will begin to thicken. When your sauce is where you like it, take the pan off the heat and toss in the remaining basil. Garnish with more shredded parmesan.
Your end result is a slightly spicy, bright tomato, basil and fennel sauce, with nuggets of sweet corn, and delicious shrimp and scallops! The perfect summer pasta!