Bay Scallops & Rigatoni in Smoked Pecan Garlic Pumpkin Sauce

Sometimes putting together the unexpected is actually the most beautiful combination. I feel like that’s the case for my Bay Scallops & Rigatoni in Smoked Pecan Garlic Pumpkin Sauce pasta. Like most of my dishes, it came together because of two things: I had a pantry full of random ingredients and I was hungry.

For me, it’s fun to experiment in the kitchen like this. Not every dish will come out perfect. Any cook who tells you that what they make comes out perfectly every single time is sadly ashamed of the process in my opinion. It’s ok to fail – there’s beauty in just trying. Anyway, rant over. I really hope you enjoy this recipe. As always, if you decide to make this, I’d love to see how it turns out for you. Tag me on InstagramFacebook, or Twitter 🙂

INGREDIENTS

  • Rigatoni, 16oz bag
  • Olive Oil, 1/4 cup
  • Yellow Onions, 2, diced
  • Garlic, 1/2 cup minced
  • Ginger, 1 inch, minced
  • Grape Tomatoes, 1 cup
  • Tomato Paste, 1, 6oz can
  • Pumpkin, 1, 15oz can
  • Milk (or Coconut Milk), 2 cups
  • Liquid Pecan Smoke, 1 tbsp
  • Basil, 1/4 cup, chiffonade
  • Bay Scallops, 2 cups (thawed if using frozen)

HOW TO MAKE IT

  1. Start by cooking the rigatoni as per the instructions on the bag. *I always use salted boiling water. It brings out the flavor of the noodles. Once al dente, strain and set aside.
  2. Now, in a deep sauce pan on high heat, add the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium high. Saute the onions until translucent.
  3. Once the onions begin to soften, add the garlic and ginger. Saute until everything begins to turn a light golden color.
  4. Now, add the grape tomatoes. Once these begin to blister, smash them with your cooking spoon.
  5. Now, mix in the tomato paste and pumpkin puree. Mix this together well and then slowly pour in the milk about a 1/2 cup at a time. Reduce the heat to medium low.
  6. Once the sauce begins to bubble, add the liquid pecan smoke, basil, and bay scallops. Stir this so everything is mixed evenly. *If your sauce is thick/clumpy, add a little more milk. You want the sauce to be slightly thick so it nicely sticks to the rigatoni.
  7. Now, add the cooked rigatoni back to the pot it boiled in and pour the sauce on top. Toss so the rigatoni gets doused evenly in the sauce. Optional: top with fresh or dried parsley and enjoy!

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