Summer and shellfish go together like mulled wine and a nor’easter. The briny taste of oysters, the ocean-watery taste of clams, the light, flaky meat of crabs just taste best when the sun is shining and the weather is sweet.
This pappardelle – courtesy of Ron Rosselli, the culinary director of The Surf Lodge – mixes the seawatery flavor of clam juice with the light sweetness of jumbo-lump crab meat. Wide ribbons of pappardelle pasta make the perfect bed for the crustaceans, and garlic, scallions, fresh mint and Fresno chilies add a fresh, herbaceous flavor to the seafood pasta.
Chef Rosselli is an alum of Café Boulud, Locanda Verde, and The Standard Grill, so this dish comes from the mind of a gastronomical wizard. And even if you’re far from a wizard in the kitchen, this is a super straightforward recipe to follow, so you’ll seem like one to your dinner companions.
Recipe by The Surf Lodge, via The Food Channel
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon Fresno chili, thinly sliced (about 1 pepper)
- 1 1/2 cups clam juice
- 1 pound pappardelle, dried
- 12 ounces (about 2 cups) jumbo lump crab meat
- 1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped
- 1 bunch scallion tops (green) and bottoms (white), chopped
- As desired fresh lemon juice
- As desired for topping toasted breadcrumbs
- 1 Put a large pot of salted water on the oven and bring to a boil.
- 2 Heat a large sauce pot over medium-low heat. Add olive oil and butter, then stir to combine. Add sliced garlic, Fresno and scallion bottoms (whites), and stir together to combine; reduce heat to low.
- 3 Add salt and continue cooking until garlic and scallions become translucent and everything becomes soft. Don't allow the garlic to take color.
- 4 Add 1 cup of clam juice to the pan and bring to a boil; remove from heat. The clam juice should not reduce or you'll end up with salty pasta.
- 5 At this point, start cooking pasta until it's al dente, roughly 7-8 minutes. Drain very well. Add to sauce. Reserve pasta water.
- 6 Return pan back to low heat , add crab meat and lightly toss, so crab meat begins to warm through. Begin to stir well so sauce begins adhering to the pasta. If pasta looks dry, add some of the remaining clam juice.
- 7 Finish pasta with fresh lemon juice, half the chopped mint and scallions tops (greens) and stir to combine.
- 8 Transfer pasta to a large serving bowl. Top with some of the remaining mint, scallion tops and toasted breadcrumbs.