Friday, December 12, 2008

Pumpkin-Peanut Curry Noodles with Five-Spice Seared Scallops and Shrimp

Cook Time: 20 min
Level: Easy
Yield: 4 servings


* 1 pound spaghetti
* Salt
* 5 tablespoons vegetable oil or peanut oil
* 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
* 2 inches ginger root, minced or grated
* 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
* 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
* 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
* 1/4 to 1/3 cup tamari dark soy sauce, eyeball it
* 1 (15-ounce) can cooked pumpkin
* 2 rounded tablespoonfuls mild or hot curry paste (recommended:
Patak's) found on international foods aisle
* 3 tablespoons five-spice powder
* 12 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
* 12 diver scallops, trimmed and patted dry
* 4 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces, then thinly sliced
lengthwise into matchsticks


Heat a large pot of water for noodles. When water boils, salt it and
add pasta to cook to al dente or with a bite to it.

While pasta cooks, heat a large, deep skillet over medium heat with 2
tablespoons vegetable or peanut oil. Add garlic, ginger, red bell
pepper, and pepper flakes to the pan and cook together a couple of
minutes, then add peanut butter and melt it. Whisk soy into peanut
butter, then stir in pumpkin and curry paste. The sauce will be very
thick. Turn down the heat to low. Add a ladle or 2 of pasta cooking
water to thin sauce a bit and simmer over low heat. Adjust salt, to

Heat a small to medium skillet over high heat. Pour the five-spice
powder onto a plate with some salt. Press both sides of the shrimp and
scallops into the powder. Add 3 tablespoons of remaining oil to hot
skillet. Place the shrimp in the pan and cook 1 minute, flip and sear
the other side until just opaque. Remove shrimp to a plate and set
aside. Add another 3 tablespoons of oil to the skillet and heat back
up to smoking. Add the scallops and sear on both sides until opaque.
Remove scallops and add to the plate of shrimp.

Drain pasta and return pasta to the pot. Add the curry-pumpkin sauce
and toss thoroughly. Serve noodles on 4 plated and top with scallions
and seafood.

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