Creamy Lemon, Prawn and Asparagus Spaghetti

This has to be one of my favourite pronto pasta dishes after home-made pesto.  It’s “fast food”, easy, scrumptious and what’s more – it uses up egg yolks!  I mentioned this recipe briefly in the egg yolk pages in the book’s annex, but here it is in more detail.

prawn lemon and asparagus spaghetti

I played about with a fish recipe for John Dory with Sorrel in my tattered and splattered Crème Fraîche Cookbook (Boutron/Ager) one night, since the photo had fresh noodles and called for egg yolks and lemon.  And since I only had prawns to hand and some fresh asparagus, this just evolved.

Vegetarians can omit the prawns and have a lovely lemony cream sauce with the asparagus.  I’m using asparagus, as it’s the end of its season here, but you can omit this and toss in fresh or frozen peas instead. It’s as simple as that.

My sincere excuses to my Italian friends for this photo.  As you can see, I do love pasta with my parmesan. Parmesan isn’t normally served with seafood pasta dishes, but I personally adore it.  Each time I sprinkle it on, my Corsican Mother-in-Law reminds me: seafood? No parmesan. Well, in that case, we can replace the prawns with roasted chicken!

lemon spaghetti

Creamy lemon spaghetti with asparagus, lemon thyme & chicken


Serves 4

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 12 minutes

12 giant prawns (or roasted chicken)
3 egg yolks
2 lemons, untreated
20 cl tub crème fraîche
50g freshly grated parmesan
1 tbsp fresh lemon thyme
bunch of green asparagus (optional)

1. Firstly, get some freshly cooked prawns and shell them, removing the black central vein.

2. Cook dried spaghetti in boiling salted water for about 10 minutes or until al dente (according to packet instructions).

3. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix the yolks, the juice and zest from the lemons, crème fraîche (or cream if you’re feeling decadently creamy), the parmesan and herbs, then season.

Mix lemon zest/juice, yolks, cream and parmesan

4. If using, break the stems off the asparagus (where they break naturally, about quarter up from the bottom) and cook them for about 5 minutes until al dente in boiling salted water.

5. Drain the pasta and in the same pasta pan, add in the sauce and toss the pasta in it.  Add the prawns, asparagus and decorate with extra fresh herbs such as lemon thyme or chives.

Serve pronto with a chilled glass of Chenin Blanc or Chardonnay.

Et voilà. Keep the egg whites for a batch of macarons!

17 replies
  1. Apron Appeal
    Apron Appeal says:

    I never thought about egg in a cream sauce. I have no doubt this is going to go over very well at my house. Thanks for the tip on fb, or rather the “tips”. I love that you have an entire browse section dedicated to egg yolk recipes. 🙂

  2. The Harried Cook
    The Harried Cook says:

    I’ve been so behind on visiting blogs, and I starting doing the rounds to see that I’ve missed SO much in one week. This recipe sounds incredible, Jill! So yummy… I love those flavors. And ‘no cheese’ is not even an option for me with such a fabulous pasta dish – seafood or not! Next time you make this, sprinkle some extra parmesan on your plate just for me! 🙂 LOL

  3. Manu
    Manu says:

    Oh Jill! Thanks so much for your lovely words! You are such a good friend! 🙂 And guess what?! I like cheese on some fish pasta too, especially creamy pasta like this. I think it goes great with the lemon cream!!!! Well done my dear, brava! <3

  4. Chef Dennis
    Chef Dennis says:

    Jill, those prawns are huge!! what a perfect summer pasta dish, the combination of lemon and asparagus with those lovely prawns has my stomach grumbling wishing it could have shared that meal with you!

  5. Carolyn
    Carolyn says:

    Hey, if you love parm with seafood dishes, tradition be damned! If it tastes good to you, get on it! Certainly looks to me like it would taste amazing.

  6. Liz
    Liz says:

    Oh, man, I wish I was making this incredible pasta for dinner tonight…but it will be on our menu soon! Jill, I just love the simplicity of this beautiful dish…it looks amazing! xoxo

  7. Hester Casey - Alchemy
    Hester Casey - Alchemy says:

    I ignore the no cheese with seafood rule too – as they say “rules are for the guidance of wisemen/women and the obedience of fools”. This is right up my street – both the prawn and chicken version. You’d wonder how McDonalds came into existence with “fast food” like this to choose instead. You’ve hit another dish right out of the park Jill!

    p.s. congrats on The Versatile Blogger award – I’m a big Manu’s Menu fan too.

  8. January
    January says:

    wow, i love shrimps in pasta. that is such an easy dish to whip up especially when pressed for time. it looks yummy and definitely worth a try 🙂

  9. Natalie
    Natalie says:

    There’s a Nigella recipe for lemon pasta with egg yolks that I’ve always wanted to try. You’ve just reminded me of it and I love the addition of asparagus, gorgeous with the parmesan!! 😀

    • Jill
      Jill says:

      Interesting, thanks Natalie. I’ve got one of her recipes using lemons but with garlic, mushrooms and olive oil – don’t know of this one. Zut! Here was I thinking this was cleverly easy, too, using a Normandy classic sauce (altered a fish recipe from my tattered Crème Fraîche Cookbook) for pasta.



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