My head understands that it's not the end of the world; but it certainly has thrown me off kilter - missing deadlines is my equivalent of fingernails on a chalkboard.
Since life dealt me a relatively calm week for the first time in what feels like forever, I decided to get back on the deadline bandwagon - even if the dish didn't get made until Thursday night.
This week's recipe called for a fresh crab salad layered between slices of avocado "ravioli". I was pretty sure that any attempts I may have made to make avocado slices in a mandoline would have resulted in an emergency room trip, so I nixed the whole "ravioli" concept right off the rip.
I probably "could" have stayed somewhat true to the concept (we all know that's hogwash) by just serving the crab salad over slices of avocado or avocado boats with the halves. Since I can't leave well enough alone, I decided to put the pasta back into this ravioli-less ravioli dish. (Plus, I was anxious to use up that bag of chili-tomato pasta that my brother brought me.)
Before I get into the whole recipe business, can we talk about how expensive good fresh crab is? I think that this is the single most expensive ingredient I have purchased to date for FFwD - considering some of the dishes we've made to date, that's saying a lot. It probably was partly due to the fact that there were only one pound cans available at the store (the recipe called for 8 ounces), but still... A couple of years ago, forking over the dough probably would have caused me heart palpitations; but the seasoned FFwD veteran in me hardly batted an eye. (That's a lie - I still have a hard time shelling out for ingredients. I don't think I'll ever become that blase; it's just not in my nature.)
Anyhoo, I did make a crab salad with fresh crab meat, lime juice, scallions, fresh thyme, parsley, a couple of shallots, fleur de sel and Aleppo pepper. I tossed it the still hot tomato-chili pasta (and a little bit of pasta water), topped it with fresh avocado slices and drizzled the whole thing with a quality olive oil.
The crab and avocado paired really, really well with the slightly spicy chili pasta. Seconds were had by all, so I would call that a win!
Pasta with Fresh Crab & Avocado
Adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table
8 ounces fresh lump or backfin crabmeat
1 tsp fleur de sel
2 tsp lime juice (or to taste)
1 small shallot, finely diced
The white and lower green parts of one scallion, sliced
2 tsp fresh minced parsley
Leaves from 3-4 thyme sprigs
1 tsp Aleppo pepper
1 avocado, sliced and tossed in lime juice
1-2 Tbs olive oil for dribbling
1 pound dried egg pasta (fettuccine is great here)
Place the crab meat in a medium-sized bowl and break up with a fork. Toss in salt and lime juice, followed by the shallot, scallion, parsley, thyme and pepper. Stir well to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Cover and let rest in the refrigerator for about an hour to give the flavors a chance to come together.
Prepare the pasta according to the package. When pasta has reached desired doneness, drain the pasta, reserving about a half cup of the pasta water. Return the drained (still hot) pasta to the cooking pot. Stir in the reserved water and toss with the crab salad.
Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl. Top with the avocado slices and drizzle with olive oil.
This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie.