The Virgin Stove

Making everything for the first time

Project Jamie: spaghetti con gamberetti e rucola

I haven’t been diligent with my Steffi x Jamie x Miki project. It’s just too easy for me to get distracted and try other things. But I promise to try and make more dishes from those books so I can meet my self-imposed deadline.

It’s a warm early-March day. By mid-afternoon, Chris and I arrived from the vet with our tiny chihuahua puppy, Basti. We’ve been up late, woke up early and the only thing we devoured since last night were cups of French roast coffee.  Chris went straight to the garden and started pulling weeds out but I insisted on eating something substantial to appease my complaining tummy.

We were both ornery, hot and hungry. We both needed comfort food. We needed something Italian.

I chose this dish because it looked and sounded interesting. I also have an intense craving for seafood considering that we’ve been eating a lot of beef and pork lately. (I know, I know… I should eat more greens.) I tried to be as faithful to the recipe as much as I could but I did tweak things a bit based on the availability of ingredients and taste preferences. My revisions are listed after the recipe below.

Is it the best pasta dish I’ve ever had? No, but it’s definitely in the Top 10. We enjoyed it immensely and I hope you do, too.

Thanks, Jamie. 🙂

spaghetti con gamberetti e rucola
spaghetti with shrimp and arugula 

from Jamie’s Italy p. 116 / Jamie’s website
serves 4

1 lb dried spaghetti
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1–2 dried red chilies, crumbled
1 lb peeled raw large shrimp
1 small wineglass of white wine
2 heaped tablespoons sun-dried tomato purée, or 6 sun-dried tomatoes blitzed in a blender
zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 handfuls of arugula, roughly chopped

Cook your spaghetti in a large pan of salted boiling water according to the packet instructions. Meanwhile, heat 3 good lugs of extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan and toss in the garlic and chili. As the garlic begins to color, add the shrimp and sauté them for a minute. Add the white wine and the tomato purée and simmer for a couple of minutes. When the pasta is ready, drain it in a colander, reserving a little of the cooking water. Toss the spaghetti with the sauce, squeeze in the lemon juice, add half the chopped arugula, adding a little of the reserved cooking water if you want to loosen the sauce a bit, and correct the seasoning. Divide between 4 plates and sprinkle with the grated lemon zest and the rest of the arugula leaves.


  • Halved recipe for just me and Chris.
  • I used lime instead of lemon. Used less zest and juice as well so the dish would have that hint of citrus without overpowering the taste of other ingredients.
  • I couldn’t find arugula in ShopRite — that’s what I get for shopping last minute — so I used a few leaves of fresh basil instead since it’s the sharpest herb I have on hand. I would recommend sticking to arugula since it has a very distinctive taste. When I make this again, I am definitely going to do that.

[print recipe]


2 responses to “Project Jamie: spaghetti con gamberetti e rucola

  1. Olive Melaya 15 March 2012 at 1:58 am

    I will try this….thanks for posting! I did my own spaghetti before while I was still in the Phils and put tuna, instead of meat, with eggplant and it was really good!

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