This is quite a nice dish to make for supper at the weekend if you want something that tastes divine but isn’t too heavy. You don’t have to use crayfish, you can use any seafood – scallops, prawns, firm white fish or even chicken/bacon if you are not a fish lover. I bought a pre-cooked cray, but if you want to ensure freshness it is better to cook it from raw if you can bear to kill a live one.
An average cray provides enough meat for two, depending on how greedy you are. About 200g of meat per person should be a decent portion. I usually allow 100g of dry pasta per person. You don’t have to use fettuccine, you can use any pasta. If you want to bulk it out a bit, you can add some extra veggies – carrots, zucchini and mushrooms would all work well. If you prefer a creamier sauce you can add a dollop of plain yoghurt or thick cream to the finished sauce.
This recipe will serve two people – double up the quantities to serve four.
400-500g of cooked crayfish meat (or other seafood)
1 onion diced
1 tin of plum peeled tomatoes
2-3 ripe vine tomatoes quartered
1-2 anchovies chopped (optional)
1 clove of garlic crushed
1 chilli (any kind depending on your preference) finely sliced
3-4 chopped olives (optional)
2-3 chopped peppadew pickled peppers (optional)
Handful of fresh basil or a good squeeze of ‘basil in a tube’
seasonings – salt, pepper, dash of balsamic vinegar
1. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large high sided frypan (or wok – it should be big enough to accommodate all of the sauce and cooked pasta).
2. Add the onions, garlic, anchovies, olives, peppers and chilli and cook until they start to soften, then add the tin of tomatoes.
3. While the sauce is reducing and cooking, boil a saucepan of water with a teaspoon of salt.
4. Cook the pasta in the boiling water according to the package instructions – usually 8 minutes roughly.
5. Taste the sauce and season with salt, pepper and a dash of balsamic vinegar (optional). Stir in the basil and fresh tomatoes.
6. Just before the pasta is cooked, add the crayfish meat to the sauce to warm it through. Meanwhile drain the pasta and add it to the pan.
7. Stir the pasta around so that it gets nicely coated with sauce. Serve in bowls with a nice rocket salad. I dressed my rocket salad with lemon/lime and olive oil, but you can add pine nuts and shaved parmesan for a bit of extra flavour if you like.