I used to make iterations of this pasta dish in college and it was one of my favorites to make! I know what you are thinking…shouldn’t you have been eating at the dinning hall? HA HA HA. There was no freshman 15 for this girl…I actually lost weight my freshman year because the only thing I thought was tasty was the grilled chicken and salad.
My second year I was finally able to move into an on-campus apartment WITH A KITCHEN! I was so happy to be able to make food that I wanted to eat. My friends slowly caught on too and I was usually feeding more than one person a night. You can say that my door was technically always open…this was also one of the reasons I was nicknamed "Mom" in my apartment.
Not only is this a still one of my go-to dishes, it is also low-fat and full of good-for-you broccoli and tomatoes. I also cut the shrimp in half to make more pieces (trick I learned in college)! I love shrimp, so I want a lot of pieces...The other great thing about this meal is that you can do a lot of the steps simultaneously. While you cook the broccoli, you can make the sauce/shrimp and also make the pasta when the sauce is close to being done. Lastly, it serves a good amount of people because of the added broccoli. Cooking tip: if you want to stretch a dish, add more vegetables to it. Hope you love this pasta dish as much as I do!
Serves: 6-7 depending on portion size.
1 lb bag broccoli florets
1 medium yellow onion chopped (around 1 cup)
4 garlic cloves minced (around 1/4 cup)
1 - 32oz raw (16-20 count) peeled, de-veined and tail off shrimp (after defrosted, cut in half)
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes - cut in half
1 tsp lemon pepper
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp good quality parmesan or Locatelli cheese
1 lb of your favorite pasta
1 tbsp rough chopped basil (topping)
2 tbsp pasta water (using a tea cup, collect water after you cook your pasta)
1. Preheat oven to 325 on convection bake.
2. Using a sheet tray, evenly lay out the broccoli, cutting pieces that look too large.
3. Evenly spray the broccoli with a good coating of spray oil, and season with garlic powder, garlic salt, and Italian seasoning. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until browned.
4. While the broccoli cooks, heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium high heat in a large deep sauté pan. Add the onions and cook for 4-5 min until slightly golden. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant stirring constantly (around 30-45 seconds). Shut off the heat!
5. Add the tomatoes and sauté for 2-3 min on medium high heat or until slightly softened/wilted, stirring occasionally.
6. Simultaneously, bring salted water in a pot to a boil for your pasta and add the pasta when the water boils. Cook till al-dente…this depends on the pasta you use. Reserve 2 tablespoons of pasta water before draining the pasta.
7. Make sure the shrimp is dried and then add it to the large pan with the lemon pepper. Cook until all the shrimp are pink and cooked through (around 4-5 minutes), stirring occasionally.
8. Add the pasta to the pan with the 2 tbsp of pasta water throughly mix to combine. Add the salt, pepper and 1/4 cup of cheese and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring to combine.
9. Put the broccoli in a large bowl and then add the pan of pasta and shrimp to the bowl. Mix until evenly combined and top with two tbsp of grated cheese and 1 tbsp of fresh chopped basil. Serve immediately!