Murphy's Grill Pasta a la Murphy
Like all the hearty, down-home dishes at Murphy's Grill, Pasta a la Murphy
comes big. "The theme here is American cuisine that is substantial," says
owner Stephan Frye. "You shouldn't leave Murphy's hungry." His
signature pasta dish is a robust mixture of southwestern flavors. Each plate comes
with no fewer than five sautéed shrimp and a five-ounce portion of julienned chicken
breast, along with sautéed Anaheim chiles, a touch of melting Monterey Jack and
a spicy red-pepper cream sauce that, Frye promises, is easy to make at home. Everything
sits on top of a generous bed of linguine.
The secret to making Pasta a la Murphy successfully is balancing each of the
ingredients, Frye says. To do that, you need to follow the recipe. Even Frye uses
one when making the dish for customers. "You don't want to add too much
of any one thing," he says.
Pasta a la Murphy has been a best-seller at his restaurant for three years running. "You've
got a little kick to the dish, and I think that's why people like it,"
Frye explains. "It's also got some sweetness to it with the Anaheim chiles."
To accompany the dish, Frye suggests uncorking a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc or
a light-bodied Pinot Noir. "It's something that's not going to get
in the way of the flavors of the food," he says.
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon chicken base
- 2 tablespoons cooking sherry
- 2 teaspoons Cajun spice mix (available at some groceries and specialty food stores; Tony Chachere's Seasoning suggested)
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons garlic salt
- About 2 tablespoons cornstarch, dissolved in 1 cup water
- 20 tiger shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails on
- 4 (5 ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, julienned into thin strips
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- 4 to 6 tablespoons butter
- 2 medium-size fresh Anaheim chiles, seeds removed, chopped (more chiles can be used to make dish spicier)
- 1 box linguine, cooked
- Approximately 1 cup grated Monterey jack cheese
- Grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- Sauce: Add all the ingredients for the sauce to a medium saucepan
and bring to a light boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally to make sure
the cream does not burn. When the sauce starts to boil, lower heat to a simmer then
slowly add in the slurry, or mixture, of cornstarch and water, stirring until the
sauce reaches the desired thickness; it should be thick enough to coat the back
of a spoon (you may not need all the cornstarch mixture). Sauce can be prepared
one day ahead.
- Chicken-Shrimp Mixture: Lightly season the chicken strips with salt
and pepper. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat, and add the chicken
and shrimp. When they are halfway cooked, place the chopped Anaheim chiles in the
pan and finish cooking until chicken and shrimp are done. The entire process should
take about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Set oven to broil. Drain and discard the liquid from the sauté pan, leaving in
the chicken, shrimp and chiles. Add the sauce to the drained pan and toss with contents
briefly over medium heat.
- When sauce is reheated, pour the mixture over linguine that has been evenly divided
onto four plates. Sprinkle top with some Monterey jack.
- Place plates in the oven
until cheese melts. Use caution when removing plates from oven, since they will
- Garnish with Parmesan cheese.
Yield: 4 servings
Source: Murphy's Grill, North Boulder, Colorado - by Melissa Castleman for
the Boulder (Colorado) Camera