Creamy Shrimp Pasta with Mushrooms in a homemade alfredo sauce. The creamy pasta sauce is made with Parmesan and Mozzarella cheese, garlic, basil, crushed red pepper flakes, paprika.
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1. Cook pasta
Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain. Reserve some of the pasta water.
2. How to cook shrimp
Heat a large skillet until hot – add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and immediately add garlic and shrimp.
3. Cook on one side for about 1 minute until pink, on medium-high heat.
4. Flip the shrimp to the other side. Sprinkle the top of the cooked side of shrimp with dry basil, paprika, crushed red pepper flakes, and salt. Cook for another 1-2 minutes, occasionally stirring, until shrimp is pink on both sides.
5. Remove the shrimp from the skillet. If shrimp is a little undercooked – it’s OK because you will continue cooking it in the sauce.
6. How to cook mushrooms
To the same, now empty, skillet, add sliced mushrooms. Add more olive oil if necessary.
7. Cook on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes, occasionally stirring, until mushrooms become soft and release juices. Sprinkle with a small amount of salt midway through cooking.
8. How to make creamy sauce
To the skillet with mushrooms, add cooked shrimp. Immediately add 1 cup half-and-half. Bring to boil.
9. Add half the cheese (1/2 cup). Bring to boil, and immediately reduce to medium-simmer. Cook, constantly stirring, until the cheese melts.
10. Gradually start adding the remaining cheese (1/2 cup), while stirring. Do not add all of the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese at once. Add just enough for the sauce to get creamy without getting too thick. You might not use all of the remaining cheese.
11. Remove from heat. Taste, and add more salt if needed.
12. Add cooked and drained pasta from step 1 to the skillet with shrimp and mushrooms and cream sauce. Reheat on medium heat. Stir well.
13. If the cream sauce is too thick and you want it thinner – add some pasta water in small amounts to the cream sauce (while the sauce is simmering on low-medium heat) until you reach desired consistency.
14. Season with more salt and add more crushed red pepper flakes and basil, if desired.
What is half-and-half?
Here is what to do to substitute for 1 cup of half-and-half: combine 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream.