This is a favorite meal of all creatures in the mythical Rovanya, a place which encompasses the civilized world in a fantasy novel that I’m writing. The name is derived, through a comedy of errors on my part, from three Russian words, (mosol, sopliv, and pryan), which I combined to generate a sort of goofy anagram, ergo: Molsoprian. The problem arises that these three words mean respectively, “pig’s feet”, “gooey”, and “spicy”. Americans, as a culinary appreciation alliance, would not likely venerate spicy, gooey pig’s feet. But I liked my anagram so much that I kept the name and changed the actual recipe to a pasta-seafood dish. I have a Russian pal who says that Molsoprian sounds like something a 1920s Communist worker would have consumed in a diner. As for Rovanya, the various inhabitants have access to both seafood and to spelt, (for the pasta), and mushrooms account for sixty percent of their meals anyway. So if it suits elves, rock trolls, ogres, goblins, sorcerers, men of old, the Chern, the Mannagishii, and many others, then it’s good enough for me. But if you wish to substitute pig’s feet for the prawns then be my guest. I suspect that the Rovanyan ogres would prefer it.
- 16 ounces linguine or 16 ounces fettuccine
- 6 quarts water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 4 ounces Italian dressing
- 1⁄2 teaspoon soy sauce (not lite)
- 1 tablespoon molasses or 1 tablespoon honey
- 3 fresh garlic cloves, minced, divided
- 3 tablespoons butter (not margarine)
- 1⁄2 cup half-and-half or 1⁄2 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1⁄4 cup fresh parsley, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1 cup carrots, julienned or 1 cup parsnip
- 12 ounces fresh mushrooms, quartered
- 16 ounces raw prawns, peeled, de-veined, de-tailed (shrimp)
- salt and pepper
- 1⁄2 cup freshly-grated parmesan cheese (optional)
- 1. Marinate the prawns for 2 hours in a blend of 1 Tablespoon olive oil, 4 ounces Italian dressing, ½ teaspoon soy sauce, 1 Tablespoon molasses (or honey, and 1 clove minced garlic. Discard marinade when finished but don’t wipe it off the prawns.
- 2. Boil the water and add the 1 teaspoon salt and I teaspoon olive oil. Add the dry linguine (or fettuccine) and cook uncovered at a low boil until tender. Drain and set aside, (covered to maintain heat.).
- 3. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and add the remaining olive oil. Sautee the carrots and remaining minced garlic together for 2 minutes. Then add the mushrooms, prawns, and parsley. As soon as the mushrooms heat up, add the Half-and-Half and stir until it begins to boil. Stir the flour into the chicken broth (no lumps) and then pour it into the skillet with the other ingredients – bump up the heat until it thickens while stirring then reduce the heat to low for two minutes, covered. Salt and pepper to taste, (using freshly-milled peppercorns.).
- 4. If using cheese, sprinkle some over each plate of Molsoprian – serve hot.