Taking Chicago & Spaghetti Frutti Di Mare

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My bag is finally unpacked, laundry done and the memories in my mind fresh like a summer breeze.
I was just hoping to make it through this trip to the windy city and I ended up not wanting to leave.  Yes, I fell head over heels in love with Chicago, the people and of course the food.  What a magical combination!

I was there to do a live cooking show at a yellow carpet event for the Busy Bee Ball, showcasing some natural and organic products incorporated into fun and easy recipes you can find here as well:

Spinach & Artichoke Grilled Cheese Funwich
Tomato Basil & Fontina Grilled Cheese Funwich
Spinach & Strawberry Salad with Candied Walnuts

The rest of the time I tried to take in the city as much as I could, especially the food.  Oh the food is always what gets me about a place, and before i had a chance to think twice I found myself at home at Vivo Ristorante, savoring a plate of Spaghetti  Frutti Di Mare to the last bite.  And somehow I was still able to sample my frien’d Paul Edgewater plate of White Truffle Gnocchi, fluffier than the clouds.

Vivo Restaurant Chicago

Also I couldn’t say no to the strawberries and champagne on the 99th floor of the Handcock building at the one table with the most amazing view of the Chicago Skyline.

Chicago

One of those things you must put on your bucket list without a doubt.
Since I’ve been back now I had to come up with a recipe of my own for an out of this world bowl of Spaghetti with Frutti Di Mare. Enjoy !

Spaghetti Frutti Di Mare
(Serves 2)

  • 1/2 lb spaghetti
  • 4 garlic cloves -minced
  • 8 large shrimp -peeled, cleaned & deveined
  • 10 clams -cleaned
  • 10 mussels
  • 1/2 c dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 c marinara sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbs fresh chives – snipped
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

1. Heat up the olive oil in a large skillet over medium flame. Season the shrimp with the red pepper flakes, a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Add the garlic and shrimp to the hot oil and saute quickly until the shrimp curls up and turns pink. Transfer to a bowl and keep warm. Add the clams and mussels to the skillet together with the wine.

2. Cover with a lid and let them cook for about 5-10 minutes until all the clams and mussels have opened. Discard the ones that haven’t. Stir in the marinara sauce and add the cooked shrimp back to the skillet and toss to coat in the sauce. Remove from flame and keep warm.

3. Meanwhile cooked your spaghetti according to the instructions on the package, drain and reserve 1 c of the pasta water. Toss to coat in the sauce with the shrimp, mussels and clams and add a little of the reserved pasta water if needed to thin out the sauce. Serve warm with a sprinkling of the chives on top.