Crabmeat Alfredo Pasta Casserole

March 28, 2012

Here I go again! :) About to rave about an insanely easy and delicious dish.  But it's true! This was so good. SO SO GOOD!

Cory had bought a can of crab claw meat on Saturday to make crab cakes with but because he painted the kitchen and I had to work, we didn't get around to making them.  So I decided to whip this up on Sunday for dinner.  I was inspired by my Blackened Chicken Alfredo, the sauce is pretty much the same. The key to this dish was absolutely the claw crab meat.  I mean, of course JUMBO lump meat would work beautifully, but to me, the claw is where the flavor is.

1/2 Cup Chopped Red Pepper
1/2 Cup Chopped Onion
1 Cup Panko Breadcrumbs
2 Tablespoons Chopped Green Onions {about 2}
1/2 Stick + 2 Tablespoons of Butter
1 Pint of Heavy Cream
1/2 cup of Milk
1/4 cup Reserved Pasta Water
Salt and Pepper {as needed throughout}
1 Tablespoon Dried Parsley
1/4 Cup Dry White Wine
1 Teaspoon of Paprika
1 Teaspoon of Seasoning Salt
1 Dried Bay Leaf
1 16 Ounce Can of Crab Claw Meat
1 Cup of Parmesan Cheese
1 Box of Rotini, Cooked

First things first, preheat your oven to 350.

{Is this a surprise? LOL! Start out by chopping your onion and red pepper to get 1/2 cup of each.}

{Combine your Panko Breadcrumbs, chopped green onion, dried parsley, salt and pepper in a bowl.}

{Melt 1/2 stick {I KNOW!!!!!} of butter in a skillet over medium heat.  Start to saute your onions and peppers.}
{In a another skillet, melt 2 Tablespoons of butter over LOW heat.  Once melted, add in your breadcrumb mixture.}
{Continue sauteing your onions and peppers until they are nice and caramelized. YUM! Add in a pinch of salt.}
{Next, you'll need some dry white wine.  This time I was prepared with 1/2 bottle of Pinot.  Enough for 2 glasses to drink and some for the dish.}
{Lower the heat and deglaze the pan of onions and peppers with 1/4 cup of wine.}
{Watch your breadcrumb mixture carefully, you don't want it to burn.  Once it's golden brown, remove from the heat.
{Whisk and let the alcohol cook out of the wine/onion/pepper mixture.  It should also thicken slightly.}
{Whisk in your heavy cream and milk.}
{Also add in 1 Tablespoon of Seasoning Salt, 1 Teaspoon of Paprika, and Bay Leaf.  Mix well and let this simmer over LOW heat.  You could also add in some Old Bay Seasoning if you wanted, I wanted to keep the flavors simple though. :)}

{While that's simmering, cook your pasta.  Any kind would work here.  Remember to reserve some of the pasta water for later!}

{By the time your pasta is done, your cream mixture should have thickened nicely.}

{Add in your Parmesan Cheese.}

{Mix it in really well.}
{Taste for salt and pepper, season accordingly.}

{Next fold in your crab meat.}

{Let this continue to simmer over low heat for a minute or two.}
{Remove the bay leaf, fold in your cooked pasta and add in 1/4 cup of reserved pasta water.  Mix well to combine.}
{Pour the pasta mixture into a casserole dish.  Be sure to use a large enough pan, mine was 9x14.  Sprinkle a bit more Parmesan cheese on top.}
{And then your browned breadcrumbs.}
{Bake uncovered for about 15-20 minutes, until everything is heated through and delicious.}

Serve and ENJOY! :)

We also had green beans and buttery skillet cornbread.  'Twas the perfect Sunday dinner. ...and the leftovers on Monday were probably better. 

Reheating tip: add a bit of water to the casserole dish and cover while heating. 

xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥

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