Spicy Tagliatelle with Crab, Lemon, and Capers
Spicy crab pasta with lemon and capers. It’s a love letter to seafood and carbs, and also to anyone you deem worthy enough to serve it to. This is the perfect example that simple and unfussy can be both elegant and refined.
When I tell you how long it took to make this you won’t believe me. Literally comes together in minutes — don’t even try to make the sauce while the pasta is cooking, or you’ll risk burning the garlic. Instead, wait until the pasta is ready to be drained, because in 10 minutes (!!) this will go from pan to plate. Thankyouverymuch.
Does anyone else keep a notebook to jot down recipe ideas as they come to you? My whole life revolves around food, so naturally, I own quite a few notebooks. When I have spare time, I transfer my recipe ideas into an app on my computer to help stay organized, and then usually weeks or months later, when I’m in a bit of a menu planning funk, I turn to it for inspiration.
This spicy crab pasta saved dinner last week.
I remember making crab pasta once before and thinking it was a bit fishy, for lack of a better word. This must have been a decade ago, but I think the key to working with something like shellfish is to make sure you balance the flavors with the right amount of acidity. I’m a total love of all things briny, so pairing this with capers and lemon was an easy call. The red pepper flakes add a touch of heat, the fresh herbs help to brighten the overall dish, and the white wine and heavy cream make for the most luxurious, smooth (yet not heavy at all!) sauce.
Please make this spicy crab pasta. And please allow yourself the pleasure of going back for seconds.Print
- 1 lb tagliatelle, (or other long pasta)
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp unsalted buter
- 3 medium cloves garlic, (minced)
- 2 anchovy filets, (drained)
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 lb lump crab meat, (picked through for shells)
- ⅓ cup dry white wine
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- lemon juice and zest from 1 lemon
- ¼ cup parsley, (chopped)
- ¼ cup dill, (chopped)
- 1 heaping Tbsp capers, (drained)
- ¼ cup Parmesan, (grated, plus more for serving)
- ¼ – ½ cup heavy cream
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add about 1 Tbsp kosher salt. Add tagliatelle, then cook according to package directions, or until al dente. Reserve about ½ cup of pasta water, then drain pasta and set aside.
- Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add garlic, anchovies, and red pepper flakes, then use a wooden spoon to break down the anchovies (they should melt into the sauce), cooking for about 2-3 minutes.
- Add crab and cook until just heated through, about 1 minute, then deglaze with white wine. Season with kosher salt, then cook 1 minute more. Add drained pasta. Add lemon juice and lemon zest, parsley, dill, capers, and parmesan. Stir to combine.
- Pour in about ¼ cup of reserved pasta water and ¼ cup of heavy cream, then toss gently. If you want more of a sauce, add more reserved water and/or cream, otherwise taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Serve with extra black pepper and parmesan cheese on top.