10 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into small pieces, divided
½ large shallot, finely minced
2 cloves garlic finely minced
1½ pounds fresh fettuccine noodles
⅔ cup heavy cream
½ pound Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved (see note)
1 pound large cooked deveined shrimp, tails off
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce
2 tablespoons chili and lime flavored hot sauce (such as Cholula)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Put the shrimp, lime juice, soy sauce, hot sauce and oregano in a heatproof plastic container. Cover tightly and refrigerate about 1 hour.
Bring a large stock pot full of very salty water over high heat.
In a large saute pan over low heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter until foamy; add shallots and garlic and cook until soft but not brown. Add cream and heat until very warm but do not let it boil.
When water has reached a boil, add the noodles. Cook for 2½ minutes.
While the pasta cooks, put the shrimp and marinade in microwave on low power for 45 seconds, just until it's warm. Don't over cook or shrimp will become tough.
When pasta is done, drain but do not rinse. Immediately put pasta into the saute pan with the cream, shallots and garlic. Add the remaining butter and the cheese. Toss well but gently until pasta is coated with the butter and cheese.
Divide pasta among four plates; place 4 or 5 shrimp on top of pasta. Serve immediately.
Cook's note: Look for Parmigiano-Reggiano that has aged at least 24 months; it can cost upward of $23 a pound, but it is worth every cent. It has an incredible nutty flavor and a crunchy texture. The cheese makes this dish the special treat it is.