Seafood Au Gratin

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Once in awhile I crave a rich creamy cheesy seafood dish, and this by far is my favorite. It isn’t difficult to make, you can use shrimp, lobster, crab, or scallops,  and doesn’t take much time to make . You wont be disappointed in the flavor either. Enjoy !!

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs of seafood. You can use just one or all doesn’t matter as long as its around 2 lbs. Shrimp, lobster, lump crab, and scallops. If scallops are large cut in half, if using lobster chop in med size pieces.
  • 4 tablespoons of real butter
  • 4 tablespoons Sherry- or cooking Sherry
  • 5 oz Sharp Cheddar Cheese – shredded
  • salt and pepper
  • 3/4 cup crushed Ritz cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 cup shredded Romano or Parm cheese. Fresh shredded not the bottled cheese.
  • 1 tablespoon of either paprika or old bay seasoning

Cream Sauce:

  • 6 tablespoons of butter
  • 6 tablespoons of flour
  • 3 cups whole milk or half and half

 

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a sauce pan; slowly stir in flour and cook for a minute; add milk or half and half and stir constantly until sauce thicken. Five to 8 minutes.
  2. 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large saute pan and saute the 2lbs of seafood .
  3. Once the seafood is sauteed  add sherry, sharp cheese, and hot cream sauce to the pan and mix well .
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Heat thoroughly and pour into a 9×9 casserole, pie dish, or individual au gratins.
  6. Sprinkle top with cracker crumbs, Romano/Parm cheese, and paprika or Old Bay.
  7. Dot with remaining butter and cook at 350 degrees until golden brown; about 20-25 min.

 

 

Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche Salad- with Creamy Lime and Honey Dressing

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This makes a fantastic lunch or in smaller portions a great starter before dinner !!! I prefer to buy medium tortillas and bake them in shell form. and if you dont have the pans you can make them with a muffin pan …   http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/taco_bowls.html

Ingredients:

  • 2 limes- fresh juiced
  • 1 lb cooked and chilled and chopped shrimp (I use thawed out frozen)
  • 2 medium Tomatoes seeded and chopped (If I have tomatoes to use up I will use up to 3)
  •  2 Hass Avocados
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/2 chopped red onion
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped Cilantro
  • 1 heart of Romain Lettuce
  • salt and pepper to taste

Dressing:

  • 2 limes- fresh juiced
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • 2 heaping tablespoons of low or no fat sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • pinch of chopped Cilantro
  • *optional* – pinch of chipolte seasoning (or chili powder/Mexican spice)

 

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl combine red onion, lime juice, olive oil, jalapeno,cilantro, and pinch of salt and pepper. Let them marinate at least 5 minutes to mellow the flavor of the onion.
  2. In a large bowl combine chopped shrimp, avocado, and tomato. Slowly mix the two bowls together blending well. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl mix all dressing ingredients together and whisk until very creamy. Adjust to taste.
  4. Chop up lettuce and place into a salad bowl or taco shell, spoon shrimp mixture on top and drizzle with dressing … enjoy 🙂

Creamy Corn Chowder with Shrimp

This recipe varies to different tastes. You can make this with shrimp, crab, lobster, or chicken. Even without meat. I suggest you season to taste as my tastes may not be the same as yours. But this is a great soup and you can alter the ingredients as seen fit. No recipe is set in stone, so I will give you the ingredients and the base, you finish it with your own amount of seasoning  …. have fun cooking, smelling, and eating … bon appetite !

     Ingredients:

  • 1 lb shrimp cooked and cleaned ( I buy cooked frozen, and if they are large I chop them up)
  • 1 stick of butter ( preferably unsalted but if not just don’t use a lot of table salt later )
  • 1 large onion finely chopped ( anything but a red onion will do )
  • 2 large potatoes ( use more if you like, but I only use 2 )
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 – 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped red pepper
  • 2 cans creamed corn
  • 2 cans whole sweet corn
  • 1 pint heavy or whipping cream
  •  2 cups chicken broth (more if you like a thinner soup)
  • 1/4 cup of white wine or sherry ( this is optional, but I like it so I use white wine most often )
  • 3 tablespoons of flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar ( that is what I use … sometimes I add even more…you may not like it as sweet as I do so add slowly to your own liking)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Dash or thyme, salt, pepper, cumin, and old bay – also top with old bay when serving.

Directions:

  1. Prepare your shrimp.
  2. In a small pot steam your carrots and potatoes for a few minutes ( about 3-5) until they soften a little but still remain firm.
  3. In a frying pan saute onions, celery, and red peppers with a little butter until onions are almost transparent.
  4. In a very large stock or soup pot melt the stick of butter on a med heat, then add the chicken broth.
  5. After butter and Ch. broth are warm and well mixed add the wine/sherry if using. Continue at med heat.
  6.  Now slowly add in the cream and sugar, and  mix well. Cook for a few minutes before adding anything else and stir often.
  7. Remove about a cup of the mixture and place in a bowl, whisk the flour into it until there are no lumps and then return back into the soup pot. Stir well.
  8. Now you can add in your Shrimp,onions, peppers, celery, carrots , and potatoes . Add the creamed corn. Drain the canned sweet corn and add as well.
  9. Mix well and cook for about 5 minutes on med heat. After that turn to a simmer.
  10. Add the cayenne pepper … stir well.
  11. Now it is time to start adding the other spices and keep adding and tasting to your own personal flavor.
  12. When you have altered the soup to your liking simmer on the stove covered for about 30 minutes…. and then let cool at least 15 minutes before eating. If using seafood sprinkle some old bay on top before eating … even more if your from MD 🙂

If you find you prefer a thicker soup you can add more creamed corn or flour, if  you want it thinner add more chicken broth. Enjoy… Ive made this several times and in different ways and have never been disappointed … so enjoy 🙂

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

    

Sounds fancy doesn’t it ? It really isn’t. In Italian it means “Devil Brother”, which just means a spicy brother to spaghetti. I happen to be a shrimpaholic and love to make this from time to time. I don’t like mine too spicy so if you enjoy a fire in your mouth by all means spice it up. I have started the new year off by eating less and eating healthier, in three days I can already see a difference in my energy level and mood. I don’t do diets because they are only a temporary fix. I’m learning that you can eat all the same things just is moderation, and some things are day foods, and some things are night foods. Oh plus I just heard Dr. Oz say we should all drink a glass of red wine every day … good for our digestion, metabolism,  mood, heart, and sanity …I can live with that 🙂

     Ingredients:

  • 1 lb large or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined ( I often use frozen and just thaw 5 min in water)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped small
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped, or 1  tablespoon of minced garlic, or 1 teaspoon garlic salt or powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley, or 3 tablespoons fresh
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil, or 3 tablespoons fresh
  • 1 (14.5 ounce  can) diced tomatoes with juice
  • 2 cups spaghetti sauce
  • 1 cup white wine
  • Grated Parmesan cheese(optional)
  • 1 lb of fettuccine, linguini, or whatever pasta you desire. ( I am using whole wheat pasta now…. not bad)

Directions:

  1. Pat dry the shrimp.Toss shrimp, salt  and red pepper flakes is a bowl .
  2. In a large skillet heat the oil at medium to high. Once hot add shrimp and saute for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Remove shrimp into a bowl but leave remaining oil and juice in skillet.
  4. Turn heat to medium or lower and add onion, cook about 5 minutes or until transparent.
  5. Now add tomatoes (with juice), wine, garlic, and oregano . Simmer until sauce thickens a little, should take about 10 minutes.
  6. Now is a good time to boil up your pasta.
  7. After the sauce thickens, return shrimp to the mix, and add spaghetti sauce.
  8. Simmer for about 4 minutes stiring and coating shrimp.
  9. Remove from heat and let sit a few minutes …. then spoon on to pasta…. sprinkle on the Parmesan cheese and enjoy 🙂

Dijon Shrimp Marinade for Grilling

You can’t always just have hamburg and hot dogs. Well I’m sure you can but the excitement fades if you make them too often. So every once in awhile I treat my house to some grilled shrimp. They are easy to make and only take about 4-5 minutes to grill. If you like grilled vegetables like I do you can use the same marinade and skewer some of those babies too. I use large chopped pieces of onion, cubed zucchini, squash, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, peppers ect ect. Not all at once just which ever ones I have at the time. Yes it is a healthy way to eat for one meal, and it hasn’t killed us yet 😉

Ingredients:

  • 2-1/2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1-1/2 lemons juiced-or 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of lemon concentrate
  • 3 tablespoons of Dijon mustard (Grey Poupon Country mustard is my favorite)
  • 1/2 cup minced basil leaves – or 1/4 cup dried basil
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced – or 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of minced garlic (jarred not dry)
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1-2 pounds of medium or large shrimp peeled and deveined (thawed if not fresh)
  • metal or wooden skewers – soak wooden ones in water for a few minutes

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl mix together oil and melted butter … mix well
  2. Slowly stir in remaining  ingredients
  3. Add shrimp (and veggies if using) to the bowl and toss well until covered
  4. Refrigerate for one hour prior to grilling but no longer – the protein in the shrimp  will break down and make them soggy if left too long.
  5. Preheat your grill to high
  6. Remove shrimp from bowl and skewer through tail and head of shrimp. If using veggies put them on their own skewers.
  7. Cook shrimp for 4-5 minutes turning over only once and are pink – cook veggies until ends are charred and beginning to soften

If you want another side corn on the cob, coleslaw, or rice are great with this. Oh and beer is also a great chaser 🙂 ENJOY !!