This winsomely crabby pasta is what you should serve someone you want to impress without looking as if you’re trying too hard. I’d recommend it to wooers—and eleventh-hour cooks as well. Delicately flavored and soothingly filling, it’s the paradigm of NBD cuisine. “What, this? Just something I whipped up on the fly,” you’ll say, shrugging, when your guests look at you worshipfully. They might also start adding nori to their pasta at home because of it. I like using the large sheets; they yield longer strips that pair well with the noodles. Cut them with kitchen scissors.
- Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a large pot over high heat. When the water is boiling, salt it. Add the spaghetti, stirring a few times right after you put it in the pot and then again, a minute later, to prevent sticking. Cook the pasta until al dente. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the spaghetti.
- Meanwhile, place the peppercorns in a mortar and grind them with a pestle. In a separate large pot, combine the zest of 2 Meyer lemons, the juice of all 3 Meyer lemons, the olive oil, and butter, and place over medium- low heat. Cook until the butter melts, whisking continuously to emulsify, about 3 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat, add ½ teaspoon of the fine sea salt and the mashed peppercorns, and whisk again to incorporate.
- Add the cooked pasta to the pot with the lemon mixture and toss well to combine. Add the reserved pasta cooking water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed, until the sauce coats the spaghetti. Toss in the crabmeat, followed by the chives and the remaining ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, tasting and adding more if necessary. Add the nori strips, tossing again, separating any that stick together. The nori will wilt as you stir it through the pasta. Serve immediately.
Reprinted with permission from Kitchen Remix by Charlotte Druckman, copyright © 2020. Photographs by Aubrie Pick. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC.