Red Fife Pasta, with Shrimp and Wine Sauce

Red Fife Pasta with Shrimp and Wine Sauce

Red Fife Pasta, with Shrimp and Wine Sauce
Nice shrimps!

I love it when you find a new ingredient, and it inspires the whole meal. That happened this past weekend, after buying some Red Fife pasta at the St. Lawrence market.

The funny thing is that I wasn’t the one inspired – it was J who started searching for the perfect recipe!

Red Fife Pasta, with Shrimp and Wine Sauce - close
A little bit closer...

We didn’t seek out the Red Fife – this was a case of in-person marketing at its best. Guy just got our attention and made us try it. The nice nutty flavour and hearty texture made the final sale. You can read a little bit about the people who grow the Red Fife, grind the flour, and cut the pasta in this article.

Once we got home, J started right in on the search for a dish. I found this kind of amusing. I think it may have to do with a recent discussion we had about how much work it can be to find recipes and plan out meals in advance.

He was definitely on the right track, looking for a light sauce that would show off the pasta. Oh, and it had to have shrimp.

Red Fife Pasta, with Shrimp and Wine Sauce
The nutty taste and coarse texture of the Red Fife pasta required a delicate sauce.

This recipe combines leeks, white wine, shrimp, and other fun stuff in a bright unassuming way, leaving the spotlight where it’s deserved – on the fantastic pasta!

Red Fife Pasta with Shrimp in Leek and Wine Sauce

Modified from this recipe from


  • 1 pound medium uncooked tiger shrimp, peeled, deveined, shells reserved
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3-4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups thinly sliced leeks (white and pale green parts)
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 3 – 4 leaves kale, de-stemmed and ripped into small pieces
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried chili flakes
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 300g red fife pasta, cooked and drained (can use any kind of pasta, if you can’t find red fife)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • Capers, to garnish
  • Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, to garnish


  1. Bring 1 3/4 cups of water to a boil over medium-high heat, add a pinch of salt, and add the shrimp shells. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cover. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Strain the shells out of the mixture, making sure to press out as much of the broth as you can.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a deep sauté pan, and sauté the shrimp over medium-high heat for about 2-3 minutes until they turn opaque. Do not overcook. Remove the shrimp from the pan and set aside.
  4. Add 1 more tablespoon of oil to the pan, and turn the heat down to low. Sauté the garlic for about a minute, then add the leeks, kale, red pepper, oregano, chili flakes and lemon zest. Cover, and cook until everything softens.
  5. Remove the lid, and add the wine, lemon juice and shrimp broth. Bring to a boil, and cook until at least half of the liquid has cooked off.
  6. Turn the heat down to low, and toss in the pasta and shrimp. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Garnish each serving with a few capers and top with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

3 thoughts on “Red Fife Pasta with Shrimp and Wine Sauce”

  1. What an interesting find!! How did you find the red fife pasta in the end after the cooking? Does it still keep the nutty flavour? Hopefully it’s not the same like whole wheat pasta, I find that it doesn’t taste well when mixed in with sauces.

    1. I really liked the red fife pasta — it stayed nice and nutty after cooking, and went really well with the light sauce. I should say that I also really like whole wheat pasta… but the red fife really was special.

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