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Orecchiette with Crab


  • Salt

  • 1 pound orecchiette

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

  • 12 crimini mushrooms, thinly sliced

  • 2-3 ribs celery from the heart with leafy tops, chopped

  • 2 shallots, chopped

  • 2-3 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1/2 pint grape tomatoes

  • Pepper

  • 1 cup green peas

  • 10-12 ounces lump crabmeat, picked through for shell pieces

  • A few dashes hot sauce

  • 1/2 cup dry white wine

  • 1 cup seafood stock, clam juice or chicken stock

  • 1/4-1/3 cup cream, (eyeball it)

  • A handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 3-4 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves chopped

  • Grated Pecorino Romano, (optional)


Bring water to a boil and salt it liberally, drop in pasta and cook to al dente.

While pasta cooks, heat EVOO, 3 turns of the pan, over medium heat. Add mushrooms, celery, shallots and garlic, cook 4-5 minutes then add tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, raise heat to medium-high and cook tomatoes until they burst, 4-5 minutes. Stir in peas and crab, heat through 2 minutes then add hot sauce and wine, reduce wine a minute then stir in stock, heat 1 minute more then add cream - a turn of the pan, parsley, tarragon. Adjust seasonings. Drain pasta and toss with sauce, sprinkle with cheese to taste, optional.