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Categories: Fish and shellfish, Main courses, Quick and easy

Cuttlefish pasta with uni sauce

Cuttlefish pasta with uni sauce
Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times

To an American, the name Santa Barbara may prompt images of leisure on a soap opera scale. Someone from Japan may be more likely to think of uni. That's right, sea urchin roe. It may come as a surprise to ... Read more

Total time: 10 minutes | Serves 4
Note: This is my adaptation of a dish by Michel Richard, chef at Washington, D.C.'s Citronelle restaurant and former chef at Los Angeles' Citrus. Sliced cuttlefish can be found at the seafood counters of many Japanese markets. It may be labeled ika somen. If you can't find it, buy a one-half-pound piece of cuttlefish and cut it so it makes a flat sheet. Freeze the cuttlefish until it is almost solid (about an hour), then cut it into very thin strips with a very sharp knife. This same sauce could be used with real pasta.
  • 2 (2-ounce) trays sea urchins
  • 2 teaspoons half-and-half
  • Lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 pound cuttlefish, cut in very thin strips
  • 1 teaspoon snipped chives

Step 1First, prepare the sauce. In a small blender or food processor container, puree the sea urchins and half-and-half. Add a few drops of lemon juice, taste and if necessary, add a few more. Set aside.

Step 2Melt the butter in a skillet over high heat. Let the butter foam and subside. When it is sizzling but has not yet begun to brown, add the cuttlefish strips and cook, tossing constantly, just until the cuttlefish strips begin to firm up, about 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Do not overcook or the cuttlefish will be tough.

Step 3Remove the skillet from the heat and add about two-thirds of the sauce. Stir to coat the cuttlefish. Add the snipped chives and season to taste with salt. Divide among 6 small heated plates and lightly spoon over a little of the remaining sauce. Serve immediately.

Each serving
133 calories; 14 grams protein; 1 gram carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 6 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 328 mg. cholesterol; 373 mg. sodium.
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