It wasn’t until after I made this dish I realized how popular it is on the menu at Romano’s Macaroni Grill.
The recipe was given to me by a family member who makes a weekly visit to the restaurant just for their Shrimp Portofino. It really is a delightful meal, loaded with a flavor and many different textures.
The dish starts with a creamy, dreamy lemon butter sauce that gets a lot of flavor from minced garlic and shallots. Once the cream sauce is done, the next step is a quick sauté of mushrooms, jumbo shrimp, fresh spinach and toasted pine nuts.
Make sure to toast the pine nuts in a hot, dry skillet just until golden brown. Macaroni Grill features angel hair pasta with theirs, but I think this recipe is delicious with any pasta of your choice.
Make sure to have a nice fresh, crusty loaf of French bread to sop up all of the goodness at the bottom of your bowl. The recipe seems like it has a lot of steps, but actually, it’s one of the easiest meals to create. Once you do, I think Shrimp Portofino may end up in regular rotation on your meal planning schedule.
2 tablespoons butter
1 ½ cups mushrooms, sliced
16 jumbo shrimp, raw, deveined,
peeled with tail on
4 cups baby spinach leaves
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
1 lb. angel hair pasta or pasta of your choice
For the lemon butter sauce:
2 sticks (16 tablespoons) butter, divided
2 teaspoons minced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon white pepper or more to taste (use black pepper as alternate)
In a small dry skillet, toast the pine nuts until golden brown. Do not burn.
Make the lemon-butter sauce in a skillet. Melt two tablespoons of the butter and saute the shallot and garlic until soft and translucent. Add the lemon juice and wine and let reduce by half. Season with salt and pepper, and then add the remaining 14 tablespoons of butter, stirring to combine. Add heavy cream and simmer to thicken. Then, heat to very low while cooking shrimp.
In a large skillet, melt two tablespoons of butter. Add mushrooms and cook for several minutes until softened and golden brown. Add shrimp and cook for several minutes until pink and cooked through. Add spinach and pine nuts, tossing until spinach is wilted.
Cook angel hair pasta according to package. Do not overcook.
To assemble, spoon pasta onto one side of the plate. Arrange four jumbo shrimp and spinach next to pasta. Spoon the lemon butter sauce over the pasta and shrimp.
Serve immediately. Serves four.