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Recipe: Seafood pasta

Updated Wednesday, 27th April 2005

Conchiglie steeped, with the fishes

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Serves 2


  • 12 King prawns
  • 400 g (14 oz) conchiglie pasta shells


  • 300 ml (10 fl. oz) olive oil
  • olive oil for frying
  • 1 ripe plum tomato, chopped
  • 12 vine cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 bulb of fennel, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh chives, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh tarragon, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh chervil, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 140°C/275°F/Gas mark 1.
  2. Peel the prawns and remove the heads, but do not discard them. Then butterfly the prawns by cutting vertically along the spines. Clean out the brown waste.
  3. Season the vine tomatoes, then put them on a baking tray and into the oven for up to 1 1/2 hours until dried.
  4. Heat a little olive oil in a pan and fry the heads and shells of the prawns. A red colour will seep from the shells.
  5. Add the plum tomato, fennel and olive oil and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and crush the shells and heads into the oil with a potato masher.
  6. Leave the mixture to infuse in a warm area in the kitchen for 20 minutes.
  7. Strain the oil through a conical strainer/sieve. The sediment should come through but not the bits of shell. You‘ll be left with a delicious shellfood oil, which can be stored in a lidded jar in the fridge and used over the next couple of days.
  8. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet, drain and add 4–6 tbsp of the shellfish oil.
  9. Fry the prawns lightly in a little olive oil for 2 minutes, until fully (but not over-) cooked.
  10. Add the prawns, oven-dried tomatoes, chervil, tarragon and chives to the pasta. Finally, add the chilli and serve immediately.






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