Craving Summer: Lemon Shrimp Pasta

As the weather is warming up, I find myself craving summer.  One of my favorite things about my home is our huge backyard.  We live on a little over an acre of land, which is pretty rare for our area.  We have a nice patio right behind the house, a pool with a great deck my dad built, a volleyball net, and then some extra room to spare.  My dad loves landscaping and gardening (sadly, I did not inherit his green thumb) and in the summertime we spend most of our time in the backyard.

Last May, I decided I wanted to cook a really nice meal for two of my best friends, LPC and ALG, to kick off the summer and have a little girls night.  I went to Target and got cute things for my tablescape (which, by the way, is a new word I've learned blogging) and got cooking!  Now, I'm craving a taste of that delicious meal as well as summer fun with friends.

ALG, LPC, Allie
Please ignore my slight sunburn

The menu for the night was a Lemon Shrimp Pasta and one of my summer (or anytime of year for that matter) favorites, Sangria.  ALG also brought some homemade chocolate-dipped strawberries for dessert.  I got both of the recipes online, however, I wrote them down by hand, and therefore can't cite them to their proper source.

  • 1 bottle red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Roja, Zinfandel, Shiraz)--I have no memory of which I used
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges
  • 1 orange cut into wedges
  • 1 lime cut into wedges
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • Splash of orange juice or lemonade (I used OJ)
  • 2 shots of gin or triple sec (optional)--I used the gin and may have been a bit generous when adding it, hehe!
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 small can of diced pineapples (with juice)
  • 4 cups Gingerale (I used Sprite because I don't really care for Gingerale)
  1. Pour wine into a large pitcher and squeeze the juice wedges from the lemon, orange, and lime into the wine.  Toss in fruit wedges and pineapple, then add sugar, OJ, and gin.
  2. Chill overnight (I learned that this is key to making a good Sangria!)
  3. Add Gingerale (Sprite in my case), strawberries and ice just before serving.
Lemon Shrimp Pasta
Makes 6 servings. 
  • 1 lb of shrimp
  • 12 oz angel hair pasta
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts (these were expensive, so I skipped them)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp lemon zest
  • Juice of 1-2 lemons (1/4 cup or so)
  • 1 tbsp table salt
  • 2 cups grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs such as basil, parsley, mint (I used all 3)
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper (I did not measure this, just added some pepper)
  1. Cook angel hair pasta al dente
  2. Cook shrimp on a skillet (until pink) with olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and zest, herbs, salt and pepper
  3. Combine with pasta and grape tomatoes.  Add more salt and pepper as necessary to taste
Voila, the final product!

It turned out quite nice, if I do say so myself!

We had so much fun sipping (or, maybe, gulping) sangria and chitchatting all night!  

What are your favorite summertime meals?  Are you craving summer as badly as I am?

As a side note, in case you were wondering, I went to the doctor and have a sinus infection, which is a bummer.  Luckily, however, it's not contagious, so I can still spend some much-needed time with Cuties A and B.


  1. I am seriously craving summer too!! Your house/yard sounds like the one I had growing up! I do miss it!! Now my goal is to try and recreate it here. First step - need to build the pool!! :)

    I always start thinking about the beach! I used to love long weekends to the OBX from Richmond. Now we need a few more days b/c we're further away!

    Ahh...memories! :) Have a great day!

  2. What a sweet idea and your table looks beautiful! I have been looking for a good sangria recipe and now I have one~thanks! Your house sounds lovely by the way~I've always dreamed of having a pool in my backyard ;)

  3. Qhhhhh I'm craving summer as too!!! Thanks for sharing the recipes. I love Sangria, but haven't ever made it myself. And cute table...it turned out absolutely adorable.

  4. I am so craving summer too! I loooove sangria and it signifies summer like no other drink well maybe a pina colada does too. And your pasta sounds delicious..what a great friend you are! (and what a great mom and wife you will be) how old are you...humm...I do have a very handsome and very eligible almost 24 year old! LOL...he would die if he saw me writing this and you can cook..major bonus points!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. The table looks so cute! Sounds like a good idea for after exams this semester! We use that exact same Sangria recipe, and it's ALWAYS a hit...love it!

  6. I love, love, love summer entertaining. Grilling is the best - so easy to please lots of palates b/c you can do multiple meats/veggies!

  7. In Malaysia always summer. But I always craving spaghetti when My family sit together.

    Enjoy your summer day :D

  8. Cute tablescape (love that word)! I'm dying for it to be summer. I thought we were close but today's weather just puts me back in bed haha! Can't wait for some backyard fun of my own!

  9. I am going to have to make that lemon shrimp pasta this week, yum!
    Please come enter my first giveaway!

  10. Yuck to the sinus infection, those are the worst! Here's to a speedy recovery and spending time with the super cuties! They are *so* stinkin' cute, btw...(c:

    And the table looked great! I love that striped table cloth!

  11. Adorable tablescape! sorry about the sinus infection :( the worst!

  12. the wedges are lucky brand and were pretty inexpensive!

  13. aw, sorry you've been sick! hope you're feeling better soon. and no worries about getting photos in! we got a pretty good collection though... nice to see everyone's reactions and different points of view on the colours.
    Talk soon, xo

  14. I have a sinus infection too...weird! Looks like y'all had a great night. I am totally craving summer as well, I can't wait to hit the pool and grill out every night! I hope you feel better!

  15. That sounds and looks fabulous! I am so ready for summer, too! That sangria recipe also sounds wonderful--I'm going to have to try that this summer!

    P.S. Thanks for the watch suggestions! Hope you feel better soon! Have a wonderful trip home this weekend! I'm so sad we couldn't meet up!

  16. This looks like so much fun! There is NOTHING better than summer, good food, good drinks and girlfriends!!

  17. sounds delicious! I miss Summer and getting together with my friends as well. Most of my friends will be abroad this Summer though so it will be sad not having everyone together!

  18. What a great meal. Love it! I'm impressed. Menu was impressive. Wish I had been there.

  19. Sounds like perfection!! I am always craving summer, but it's already been over 90 degrees down here in South Georgia for several days now, so I am dreading how hot it could get this summer! xoxo

  20. I'm craving summer as well! And those recipes sound fantastic!

    I gave you an award on my blog today. Come by Life with Elizabeth to pick it up!

  21. Where can I find a babysitter like you?! Sick with a sinus infection and still looking forward to babysitting! That is too sweet. Hope you get to feeling better and yes, I'm craving some summer too!

  22. This looks amazing! Fantastic job!

  23. Fantabulous recipes, thank you very much!
    And your tablescape, well darling!
    Hope you get to feelin' better and have a wonderful weekend!

    Mrs. Kindergarten

  24. I hope you start and feel better! Your tablescape is so pretty. I am def ready for summer. This has been a very long winter.


  25. Looks like a great dinner (thanks for the recipes). I can't wait for summer, I want to have a nice outdoor dinner.

    -Julie. littlepinkrainboots.blogspot.com

  26. I get such a kick out of reading your blog....b/c you are LIGHT YEARS ahead of where I was when I was in college. I can only imagine the fabulous backyard bbqs you will be hosting in the years to come.

    Cheers to you!!!! (with Sangria, of course!)
    xoxo elizabeth

  27. Patio eating!! So many great things to look forward to when thinking about good weather!! Great set up!

  28. Allie, I know you also got it from Elizabeth, but I awarded you the Lovely Blog Award too :)

  29. I'm only a few weeks away from summer vacation ~ I can hardly wait! Summer evening suppers on the patio, catching up with friends, lazy days on the beach and a relaxing start to each day.

    The recipes sounds wonderful!


  30. How yummy! My mom used to make lemon shrimp pasta with pine nuts so often. Its so delish without that heavy gross full feeling.

    BTW, I gave you the Versatile blogger award on my blog. Come check it out :)


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