Spaghettini With Fiddleheads and Shrimp

“Fiddleheads, yum! A Canadian and Northern U.S. treat, if you can get your hands on some, you should give them a try. It's the simplicity of this dish of pasta, curly fiddlehead fronds and shrimp nestled in a light cream sauce that makes it impressive. If you have access to wild leeks, the flavour is great in combination with the fiddleheads! Don't let the many steps of this recipe put you off, it's really quite simple. Freshly grated Parmesan cheese can be passed at the table as an optional topping. Recipe from Food and Drink.”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 4 cups fresh fiddleheads
  • 12 ounces spaghettini or 12 ounces linguine
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup sliced leek, white and pale green parts
  • 12 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 lb uncooked shrimp, shelled
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or 2 tablespoons basil


  1. Rub brown papery scales off of fiddleheads and rinse several times under cold running water. Drain well and trim off ends. Set aside.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add pasta and return to boil. Cook for 7 to 9 minutes or until pasta is al dente. Remove from heat and drain, reserving about 1 cup (250 mL) of the cooking liquid. Return pasta to pot.
  3. Meanwhile, melt butter over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add leeks and cook for 2 minutes, stirring often, until leeks are softened. Add fiddleheads and cook for about 3 minutes or until fiddleheads start to turn bright green. Pour in wine and scrape up any brown bits stuck to pan and boil until reduced by a little more than half.
  4. Stir cream into pan and bring to boil. Boil gently until reduced, about 5 - 8 minutes. Add shrimp and simmer, stirring, just until cooked through and fiddleheads are tender. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over drained pasta, toss gently and add enough of the reserved cooking liquid to thin as necessary. Serve sprinkled with chives.

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