The Chew: Mario Batali’s Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta Recipe

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The Chew: Mario Batali Dice Rolling Game

It’s Michael Symon and Mario Batali’s birthday show on The Chew! To celebrate, they had a possibly intoxicated Mario Batail roll the dice to choose what ingredients he would use in a spur-of-the-moment dish. I say Mario was possibly intoxicated because I’m just not sure. I think he might have been. But if he was, then who can blame him? It’s his birthday!

Anyway, the ingredients Mario Batali rolled were shrimp, cream cheese, spinach, and guacamole. These are some pretty random ingredients. Mario decided to make spaghetti and throw a noodle dish together that way, but Michael, Carla, and Clinton said they would’ve made some dip. Something like crab dip, only with shrimp instead. Personally, I would’ve gone with shrimp tacos.

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The Chew: Mario Batali's Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta Recipe

Mario Batali made a special Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta recipe, which was made after rolling the dice for random ingredients. (AlenaKogotkova / Shutterstock.com)

But Mario made a Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta recipe and it looked delicious. When I was in college, I’d sometimes throw some cream cheese and torn-up field greens in my ramen with some Tabasco sauce for a little flavor. I didn’t really know how to cook then and I didn’t have a lot of money, but I liked that dish a lot. Mario Batali basically made the fancy version of that.

Check out my attempt at reproducing the recipe below and let me know what you think! Oh, and if you’re wondering about where the guacamole went…Mario decided to throw out the guacamole and serve it with chips as an appetizer.

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The Chew: Mario Batali Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta Recipe Ingredients

  • 8 ounces large Shrimp (tails on, peeled and deveined)
  • 8 ounces Baby Spinach
  • 4 ounces Cream Cheese
  • 1 pound Spaghetti
  • 1 Red Onion (sliced)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (sliced)
  • 1/2 Red Bell Pepper (diced)
  • 4 ounces Bacon (sliced)
  • 1/4 cup Marinara Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Dry White Wine (such as Pinot Grigio)
  • 10 Basil Leaves (chiffonade)
  • Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Mario Batali: The Chew Shrimp, Cream Cheese & Spinach Pasta Recipe Directions

  1. Cook spaghetti to al dente according to package directions in boiling water salted like “the Jamaican Sea”.
  2. Start with sauteing the onion in some olive oil in a large pan until they start to soften.
  3. Then add the garlic and basil. After about 30 seconds, when fragrant, add the bacon. Sprinkle a little salt, and pepper on top.
  4. After a minute or so, add the shrimp and peppers to the pan and season again with salt and pepper. Allow it to steam together for about 4 minutes, until the shrimp turns pink and the vegetables turn translucent.
  5. Next, add the tomato sauce and wine. Go light on the tomato sauce because Mario said he prefers the sauce to be a stain in the pasta, rather than covering it completely. When the tomato sauce is reduced by half, add the spinach on top and cook until it wilts, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Add the cream cheese at the very end and stir it around. Then add the spaghetti on top and toss everything together. Mario said it’s important to cook the spaghetti in the sauce pan for about 30 seconds so it blends with the sauce to become one.
  7. Garnish with basil when you serve it.
  8. Enjoy!

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