02 January 2013

lemon garlic spaghetti with langostino and broccoli

Pity the poor langostino. It surely must suffer from an identity crisis.

Mistakenly marketed as “mini lobsters,” the lowly langostino is not of that lineage. And though the word “langostino” means “shrimp” or “prawn” in Spanish, this poor little creature isn’t a member of that family either.

Contributing to the confusion, when cooked the langostino does resemble shrimp meat and has a sweet delicate flavor like lobster. But it looks more like a short, crinkled crawfish, brandishing a pair of front pincers that are longer than its body.

Truth be told, his miscatagorized crustacean is actually a member of the crab family. Its closest relative is its fellow gastropod, the hermit crab.

Rarely found in stores, Trader Joe’s in the US stocks frozen langostinos. Every time we’re in the states, we stock up on these delicious morsels of goodness.

1 package frozen langostino, thawed (Trader Joe’s)
3 broccoli crowns, cut into flowerettes
1/2 package spaghetti noodles
4 cloves garlic, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
juice of 3 lemons
zest of 1/2 lemon
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper to taste
chopped parsley
parmesan cheese, grated

Bring pot of water to boil, add salt and the chopped garlic to boiling water. Blanch broccoli for about a minute, then remove from water and drain. Add pasta and cook according to package directions.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over low to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring. Do not allow garlic to burn. Add the butter, and once it has melted, add the langostino, then the broccoli flowerettes. Add the lemon juice and a tablespoon or two of pasta water. Toss well. Serve with lemon zest, parsley, and cheese.