Delicate crabmeat gives sweetness to a light citrus sauce served on top of pasta.click photo to enlarge
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup tarragon or white-wine vinegar
1/3 cup finely chopped shallot1
1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon pieces
1 lb jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over
3 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemon zest
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 lb dried egg fettuccine
Boil wine, vinegar, and shallot in a 2 1/2- to 3-quart
heavy saucepan over moderate heat until liquid is
reduced to about 1 tablespoon, about 3 minutes.
Add a few tablespoons butter, whisking constantly.
Add remaining butter 1 piece at a time,
whisking constantly and adding each new piece
before previous one has completely melted,
lifting pan from heat occasionally to cool mixture.
Reduce heat to low, then add crabmeat and cook,
stirring occasionally, until just heated through, about 2 minutes.
Remove pan from heat and stir in herbs, zest, lemon juice, and salt.
Meanwhile, cook pasta in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Reserve 3 tablespoons of pasta-cooking water, then drain pasta.
Toss pasta with crab sauce and reserved cooking water in a serving bowl.
Season with salt and pepper.
Makes 6 main-course servings.