Brightly flavored mint pesto and umami-rich grilled shrimp make this pasta a real knockout. Plus, it features a pantry standby and under sung hero of early spring vegetables; peas. Peas are rich in proteins,... fiber and antioxidants. So, give this dish try.
In a medium bowl beat the lemon juice and olive oil together. Add the shrimp and turn to mix until the shrimp are coated in the oil and lemon. Cover with a cloth and set aside in a cool place.
Set a large pot of salted water on to boil, and place a large pasta serving bowl over it like a lid. This will heat the bowl. Pre-heat your broiler or set a cast iron grill or over a medium flame. When the water boils, add the spaghettini and set the timer for 4½ minutes. When the water is at a rolling boil again, add the frozen peas to the pasta.
Meanwhile, tip the shrimp onto the hot grill and quickly spread them out into a single layer. Sprinkle with a little salt. When they are pink on one side, about 2 minutes. Turn them and cook them 1-2 minutes more.
When the spaghettini are ready, remove the pasta serving bowl and wipe the bottom dry. Add the pesto to the heated bowl. Reserve ½ cup of the hot cooking water and drain the spaghettini and peas into a colander. Mix ¼ cup of the hot pasta water with the pesto to loosen it. Add more, a tablespoon at a time, if needed. Tip in the hot pasta and peas, add the grilled shrimp and toss everything together. Taste for salt. Serve immediately.
To keep wholewheat pasta ‘al dente’ always undercook it, by 1 minute less than packet instructions if adding it to a sauce to cook a little more, or 30 seconds for pesto and other raw sauces as here.
This dish is also delicious made with arugula pesto.