Main Attraction, Pasta, Seafood

Lobster and Fiddlehead Penne

There we go, once around the sun.  It’s been about a year since I started this adventure, cooking and sharing recipes with you.  And now we’ve come full circle.  Fiddleheads are in season again, along with spring rains and the promise of summer.  Greenhouses are open, lawns are being mowed, spinach and lettuce are sprouting in the garden.

At the Union Street Cafe we’ve had a hectic week serving brunch to many many mothers and their families over the weekend and hosting the Lieutenant Governor (she had our Nearly Famous Fishcakes and Greek Salad).  My sister Meagan and decided to have our own Mother’s Day celebration at home.  She had cooked lobster in the fridge, and I picked up some fiddleheads.  We stole alfredo sauce, a baguette, and a beautiful salad of Penner’s organic greens from the restaurant.  And a bottle of Windermere wine.

Windermere is a gorgeous not-dry white wine made by Jost Winery.  The grapes, romantically named KW 94-2, were developed from crossing grape varieties in the 1980s at the Kentville Research Station.  They are grown just outside Berwick in Windermere by Jim Gray, one of our favourite raspberry growers. It goes well with some of the more wine-challenging dishes at the Cafe, notably our Chicken Curry.  Of course, it is absolutely sublime with creamy pasta with lobster and the season’s first fiddleheads.

Lobster and Fiddlehead Penne

Colours of springtime!  Ribbons of beet greens or spinach would be welcome additions to this gorgeous dish.

1 lb. Penne
2 T. Butter
1 clove Garlic
1/2 lb.  Fiddleheads, well washed (trim off any brown ends)
1 C. Whipping Cream
1/4 C. freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper
2 C. chopped cooked Lobster (you could use thawed frozen lobster meat or prepare your own)
more Parmesan for serving

Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil, add the penne, and cook until almost tender (the pasta will cook again later and you don’t want moosh).  Drain, reserving a little of the cooking water.  Meanwhile, place a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add the butter.  When it has melted, add the garlic and fiddleheads and saute for a few minutes.  Before the garlic browns, add the cream and bring to a boil.  Add the lobster meat, the penne, Parmesan cheese, a healthy pinch of salt and a few grindings of pepper to the pan.  Using tongs, toss while the cream reduces to a sauce that just clings to the pasta.  If you’ve gone too far and the pasta seems dry, add a little of the cooking water.  Divide into bowls and top with a little more Parmesan.