This recipe from Sara Moulton Cooks at Home is the happy result of an unhappy incident. My friend and fellow chef Sandy Gluck was trying out for a job at a very fancy cutting-edge restaurant in New York City in the early eighties. One of the many reasons she decided she wouldn’t work there was that the staff meal was so awful. Their Dickensian idea of a vegetable was carrot and asparagus peelings.
But peelings made from the carrot’s luscious inner meat, instead of its tough outer skin, taste and look great. They’re long and slender, and if you turn your head and squint at them for a while, they begin to remind you of fettuccine. Or at least that’s what they reminded me of when I developed this recipe for Gourmet. Indeed, these peelings not only look like fettuccine but they take to quick cooking like fettuccine especially if you leave them al dente. They’re delicious this way, with the side benefit that you might bamboozle some child to eat cooked carrots because this time they don’t look like carrots but like orange pasta. Leave out the shrimp if you want to make this recipe vegetarian.
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 pound medium shrimp, peeled with tail intact, deveined, rinsed, and patted dry
2 large shallots, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
One 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
10 large carrots, cut into ribbon-like strands with a vegetable peeler, tough core discarded
3/4 cup dry white wine
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup chicken stock, preferably homemade (page 338)
1 cup thawed frozen peas or blanched fresh peas
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Heat the oil and butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the shallots, garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes and cook until the shrimp just turn pink, about 2 minutes more. Transfer to a bowl. Add the carrots to the skillet and cook over high heat, stirring, until barely tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer to the shrimp bowl.
Add the wine to the skillet and boil until it is reduced by half. Add the cream and stock. Bring back to a boil and boil until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the shrimp, carrots, and peas to the pan and simmer until they are just heated through, about 2 minutes. Season to taste and serve hot.