Naan shrimp flatbread

Are you looking to change-up your standard flatbread or Naan pizza recipe?  Why not use grilled or sautéed shrimp?  I made these flatbreads one week ago and they were well received by everyone.

I used about 10 shrimp for three flatbread.  After preheating the oven to 400 degrees, I tossed the shrimp in an everyday pan with a tablespoon of olive oil.  I added some lemon pepper seasoning and cooked them until pink and firm.  I removed them from the stovetop and cut into smaller pieces for the topping.

Using the three flatbread, I spread a thin layer of tomato paste first and added shredded mozzarella cheese.  Then I baked this layer for about 5 minutes and removed them from the oven.

Meanwhile, I sliced three small tomatoes, and seeded them and chopped fresh basil from my indoor herb garden.  When the flatbreads were out of the oven, I placed the other ingredients on top, including some fresh mozzarella and sesame seeds.

Return the flatbreads to the oven and bake for a total of 15 to 20 minutes.  Slice and serve for appetizers for your next party.

Shrimp Alfredo in a pressure cooker

Would you believe that it is possible to cook delicate shrimp in a pressure cooker?  Well, it is possible and was super easy to make and serve a dinner very quickly with this recipe.

I have had some fears about using an electric pressure cooker.  So much so, that I have kept mine in a box for many months.  I would read the recipes and think about the process and then say, “well, maybe another day.”

So that day came.  And, the process was super easy.  It took only this recipe to convince me that pressure cooking is really all that has been proclaimed. Put ingredients into a pot, close the lid and “presto” a meal has been created.  That actually happens.

Here is how I made the magic happen with shrimp.  Gather these ingredients:  olive oil, 1 medium yellow onion, 2 cups tri-color penne pasta, 12 to 14 ounces of frozen shrimp, 2 1/2 cups chicken stock, 1 Tablespoon Pensey’s minced garlic, 1 teaspoon shrimp boil, 1/2 cup of half and half, 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1/2 cup of grated Swiss cheese, 2 teaspoons Wondra flour, salt and pepper to taste and parsley flakes.

Using my Cuisinart pressure cooker, I heated a couple Tablespoons of oil and browned the onion for about 2-3 minutes.  Next, I added the dry pasta, shrimp, chicken stock, garlic, and shrimp boil seasoning to the pot.  I locked the pot and cooked on High for 7 minutes.

I used the quick release and removed the pressure. I opened the pot and added the half and half, Swiss cheese, Parmesan cheese, flour, salt and pepper and simmered for 6 minutes.  Serve with parsley flakes and enjoy.

This is a quick dish and will serve 2-3 people.

Shrimp Chowder

Spring weather fluctuates in Michigan. We have many chilly April days. So, making a pot of soup is not out of the question in my kitchen.  I was inspired by a recipe I found in Cooking Light magazine and prepared this delicious chowder in my Staub pot.

This chowder is not a thick soup, like I have made in the past.  But, it was equally delicious.  Gather these ingredients.  2 cups vegetable broth, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, black pepper, 2 Tablespoons margarine, 1/2 cup chopped carrots, 1/2 cup chopped white onion, 1/2 cup chopped celery, 2 tablespoons flour, 3/4 bag of cooked shrimp, 1 cup half and half, 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese

Prepare the broth.  Combine broth, thyme, pepper.

In the cooking pot, saute carrots, onion, and celery. Add flour and cook out for 1 minute.  Add shrimp, and then the broth.  Heat to simmer.  Add half and half and continue to cook until the chowder is hot. Season with parsley flakes when serving.

Serve with a side salad or crusty bread.

One pot New Orleans shrimp

Even though we have lived been living in Michigan for nearly ten years, the second time around, I still have a love for down-South cooking. We spent nearly one year in New Orleans and became very endeared to the fish and seafood specialties of the area.

Here is a recipe that I have been making for many years which reminds us of our time spent in that area of the country.

Gather these ingredients to make this dish:  coarse salt, 2-3 tablespoons margarine, 2 stalks celery, garlic paste, 1/2 white onion, green onions, 4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, sliced lemon, about 20-25 cleaned shrimp, Herbs for Seafood and parsley flakes. White or brown rice as desired to accompany the dish.

I prepare this dish in my Staub cooking pot, which helps add to the flavor of the dish with the built-in cooking technology to the lid.

Prepare the rice for serving as the dish is completed.

To make the dish:  Melt the margarine in the Staub cooking pot.  Add celery, green onion, white onions, salt to taste and garlic.  Cook until soft. Next add, the Worcestershire, Herbs for seafood, lemons, and shrimp. At this point, I cover the dish, reduce the temperature and cook for about 5 minutes before stirring again. Continue to cook until the shrimp is done and top with parsley flakes for presentation over the rice.  This dish takes under 30 minutes to prepare and serve.  It is very tasty and full of flavor. Staub pots can be purchased at many cooking stores, such as Sur la Table or Williams Sonoma. One-pot cooking is easy, fast and very comforting to serve.

Recently at the International Home and Housewares show, Staub featured many of their new colors and designs for 2017.  Here are some of the lovely pots that they featured in Chicago.

Shrimp with Lemon orzo

Citrus and fish blend very nicely, offering a great taste and a light presentation. We really enjoyed this combination, instead of serving with a traditional rice.  The orzo is creamy and takes far less time than a risotto.  I found this recipe in the December 2016 Cooking Light magazine.

I used a one pot approach and brought out my Staub pot for this great dinner.  Here is how I prepared the dish.  First, gather these ingredients:  1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 chopped white onion, 2 teaspoons dried thyme, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1 cup uncooked orzo, 1/3 cup white wine, 3 1/2 cups chicken broth, 1/2 tsp Kosher salt, 1 cup frozen peas, 1 teaspoon dried lemon peel, 1 pound uncooked, cleaned shrimp, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, ground black pepper, 1 ounce low-fat cream cheese, dried chives.

Heat the oil in the pot.  Add onion, thyme and garlic. Cook until the onion is soft and lightly browning.  Add orzo and toast about 1-2 minutes.

   

Add wine and boil.  Add 2 cups of the chicken stock with salt to taste.  Boil on high.  Decrease the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.  Stir from time to time.  Next, stir in the rest of the stock, the peas, lemon peel and shrimp.  Cook until the shrimp are done and the liquid is absorbed.

   

Remove from the stove and add in lemon juice, cream cheese, and pepper.  Serve in bowls and top with chives.  I also served glazed carrots with this dish and the flavors were excellent together.

Grilled chives from the garden

Summertime herbs are being harvested in my garden, and I recently decided to grill some chives with my other vegetable assortment for dinner.

The chives were delicious on the grill and gave another texture to the Asian dish, which I paired with some grilled shrimp.  There is something just so wonderful about taking cuttings from a home garden and adding them into the dinner menu.

I usually clip my chives a couple of times a season and enjoy them in everything from herb dips to garnishes for salads or pasta dishes.

If you did not plant chives this year, be sure to put them on your list for next year, as they are super easy to grow and will even tolerate some shade in the garden.

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Won-Ton soup

One of our favorite Winter meals is soup.  Soup and salad or soup and crusty bread or even soup and sandwich come together in a matter of minutes and can be super delicious on a cold night.  This is one of my all-time favorite soups.  No need to get take-out as this soup recipe is better than take-out.

Assemble these ingredients and combine in a large stock pot on the stove:  8 cups of chicken broth, sliced fresh mushrooms, sliced water chestnuts, about 6 green onions including the green stems, cooked shrimp, pork or chicken slices (could be leftover from another meal), fresh romaine lettuce pieces, and won-ton noodles.  I slice my won-ton noodles into thin strips and use them in the soup.  I do not take the time to make filled won-tons.  Only slice as many noodles from the package as you will need for the soup, probably not even 1/3 of the package. The last time I used 10 noodles cut into thirds.

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Boil the stock and add the above ingredients except the greens. Stir in the noodles and cook to heat. Add the greens just before serving the soup.  If this soup will be served for a planned Asian themed party, serve with egg rolls or any classic Asian dish. I have many posts on this blog for Asian entrees, egg rolls and spring rolls. Use the search tool and input Asian or shrimp to find quite a few recipes very quickly. Or scan the recipe categories to search more efficiently for exact names of dishes.

This soup can also be served on a buffet.  Use an attractive soup tureen and it will be the star of the meal.

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