Tequila Shrimp Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

Main Course

Recipe adapted from Savoring America

Serves 4

  • 1½ pounds ripe tomatoes, preferably Creole, cored and quartered
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, plus salt to taste
  • 1½ lbs peeled and deveined Louisiana shrimp
  • 1/4 cup fresh satsuma or orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons good-quality tequila
  • 1/3 cup raw hulled green pumpkin seeds (look in the bulk bins at your grocer)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 minced chipotle chiles en adobo, plus 1-2 teaspoons sauce
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 pounds bow tie pasta
  • 4 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Tequila Shrimp Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

Tequila Cream Shrimp

Click image to enlarge


Preheat an oven to 400℉. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer, cut sides up, in a glass baking dish. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Turn the tomatoes over and continue to bake until the tomatoes are soft and lightly browned, and most of their juices have evaporated, 25-30 minutes longer. Let cool and transfer the tomatoes and any remaining juices to a food processor. Process until fairly smooth. 

In a non-aluminum dish, combine the shrimp, satsuma or orange juice, tequila, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Let stand at room temperature, stirring once or twice, for 30 minutes. Spread the pumpkin seeds in a small metal pan, place in the oven, and toast for 5 minutes. Stir and continue to toast, stirring every 2-3 minutes, until the seeds are lightly browned, 10-12 minutes total. Let cool and coarsely chop.

Drain the shrimp, reserving the marinade. Set a large frying pan over high heat and add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. When hot, add the shrimp and cook, tossing and stirring, until the shrimp are pink and partially curled but not done through, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl. Reduce the heat to low and add the garlic to the pan. Cook, stirring often, until fragrant and golden, about 2 minutes. Add the puréed tomatoes, the reserved marinade, the chipotles and their sauce to taste, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Raise the heat slightly and simmer until thick, about 5 minutes. Add the cream and stir in the shrimp and any juices from the bowl. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are just cooked through but still moist and the sauce is thick, 3-5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta until just al dente according to package directions. Drain the pasta and add to the sauce in the frying pan. Heat briefly, tossing and stirring, until well combined. Divide the pasta among individual plates. Scatter the pumpkin seeds and green onions over the top, dividing evenly. Serve immediately, passing the cheese at the table.

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