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Basil Pasta with Salmon Lox and Caviar

Lightly brine-cured salmon eggs—which the Japanese call “ikura” and often use in sushi rolls—make a light, luscious companion to the silky lox in this pasta dish… and they add loads of omega-3s.

Basil Pasta with Salmon Lox and Caviar
Adapted from a recipe by Grace Parisi for Food & Wine

Makes 4 main or 6 first-course servings

Sea salt
1/2 pound tagliarini or fettuccine
1 tablespoon butter (unsalted)
1 tablespoon organic extra virgin olive oil or macadamia nut oil
1 shallot (green onion), minced
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons crème fraîche or light sour cream
1 tablespoon finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon chopped basil
Organic coarse ground black pepper
2 oz (1/2 cup) wild salmon nova lox, cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
4 oz wild salmon caviar (ikura)

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add a large pinch of salt. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta into a collander or sieve, reserving about 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Rinse the pasta very quickly with cold running water and set aside.

  • In a large, deep skillet, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the oil and minced shallot and cook over moderately low heat for 2 minutes, stirring.

  • Add the crème fraîche, parsley and basil. Stir in about 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta cooking water and season with pepper. Add the pasta and smoked salmon ribbons and toss well.

  • Add up to 2 more tablespoons of the reserved cooking water if the pasta seems dry. Remove from heat.

  • Add three-fourths of the caviar and toss gently. Serve in shallow bowls, garnished with the remaining caviar.

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