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If you are like me you love seafood. I can't afford the one meal I adore which is crab legs. They cost $12.99 a pound and I won't buy them. Buy a pack of imitation crab meat. Use your favorite seasonings, and add a touch of butter as well. In less than 30 minutes your going to feel like you had a big budget for seafood.
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 people
Well I just ate a huge omelette and read your submission...I'm hungry again, and that's saying a lot because I'm not a frequent eater! I'd actually forgotten the imitation crab meat, which I actually always preferred over the real thing.
Be careful what imitation crab you buy, read the ingredients. There are some out on the market without the slightest bit of fish in the ingredients and needless to say tastes like it too.
If you like seafood, a better option is a bag of frozen mixed seafood. Here in New York, we can get 2 bags for $5. It's a medley of shrimp, calimari, octopus, mussels, clams and imitation crab. I saute the mixture in some butter and garlic (or garlic powder), then add some salt, pepper and a splash of lemon juice. The seafood juices mix well with the butter to add a briney flavor. While that's cooking, I make the linguini. In 10 mins, I have a meal for 2 that would cost $20+ here in New York (and that doesn't include tips!), but it cost me about $4 (one bag of seafood gift $2.50 + $1 for pasta + 50 cents for butter and spices). There's no prep time and I don't even need to use a knife or cutting board. The longest time is spent waiting for the water to boil.
If I really wanted to be cheap, I'd use Chinese noodles, which cooks in 3 mins. If I wanted to be really really really cheap, i can just use instant ramen, for about 40 cents a bag. Sometimes, I'll even splurge and add some tomato paste or actual chopped tomato. Or if I wanted to be healthy, I'll add a bag of frozen veggies (broccoli, peas or a primavera mix). Sometimes I add croutons for texture (or if I'm cheap, I'll just sprinkle crumbs from the croutons or a box of crackers).
For a change of pace, instead of using butter, I'll use salad dressing to saute the seafood in. Italian is the obvious choice since it has spices and cheese (you can eliminate the lemon juice since it has vinegar). Ranch is nice as well, for a creamy sauce. Basically, any dressing with fat. But if it has sugar, make sure to stir or it'll burn. Or if you don't want to risk burning, just boil the seafood mix in a little water. Take the seafood out and put over the pasta. And then pour salad dressing over the seafood. And don't waste the water you boiled the seafood in. It makes a nice broth for pasta, rice or by itself. Just season with salt and spices.