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Garlicky Breaded Shrimp, A Must Try.

11 Dec

This week has already turned out to be incredibly stressful. Work is crazy as I try and fit everything in before the end of the month, and there is probably a 200 page rant I could easily write about my frustrations with Gold’s Gym at the moment (hello fraud case!). However, I will spare you.

::deep breath:: Tomorrow is my Friday, and for that I am extremely grateful.

 On a happy note, I finally finished a table that I’ve been working on and it turned out even better than I hoped – pics coming soon, and as always it is available for purchase. I put a lot of effort into this piece, and it totally paid off – I can’t wait for you to see it!

Also, I’ve been working on spicing up our dinners. This is an on-going process, and I love to see my recipe book grow and grow. Last night I had the amazing idea of preparing shrimp in a similar way that I prepare breaded chicken – why not, right? I can’t wait to serve it up again, it was a huuuge success!

Garlicky Breaded Shrimp

garlic shrimp

What You’ll Need:

  • Frozen shrimp (I had about 10 left over)
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 1 cup bread crumbs (any flavor, mine were plain)
  • salt & pepper

What You’ll Do:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. In a microwavable dish, melt butter and garlic together
  3. Peel shrimp (I take the tails off, even though they shrink if you do that), and add to the butter and garlic mixture. Let marinate for 1-2 hours.
  4. Mix together the bread crumbs, salt, and pepper (I used about 2 tsp of each). Dip the shrimp in the bread crumb mixture and place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  5. Drizzle the shrimp with the leftover butter and garlic mixture. Top with extra breadcrumbs and place in the oven for 18-20 minutes.
  6. Enjoy!

Holiday Cookbook: Classic Chocolate Chess Pie

4 Dec

I’m a huge fan of anything chocolate, and this Thanksgiving was my first time making a classic Chocolate Chess Pie. It was gone instantly. So I thought I would share it with you, you know, so you can impress your family this Christmas!

Classic Chocolate Chess Pie

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 3 large eggs (room temperature)
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 partially 9-inch baked pie crust

What You’ll Do

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees
  2. Combine sugar, cocoa, flour, and salt.
  3. Blend in milk. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  4. Add butter and vanilla, beat until smooth.
  5. Pour into a pre-baked shell (or make your own!) and
    Bake in 325 degrees for 55-60 minutes.
  6. Enjoy!
*Original recipe found here

Holiday Cookbook: Southern Pecan Pie

29 Nov

Today, let’s talk about something dangerous: Southern Pecan Pie. Mmmmm… my favorite!

Southern Pecan Pie

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups corn syrup
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups pecans (chopped if you like, but I keep mine whole)
  • 1 unbaked deep dish pie shell

What You’ll Do:

  1. In saucepan boil sugar and corn syrup together for 2 to 3 minutes; set aside to cool slightly.
  2. In large bowl beat eggs lightly and very slowly pour the syrup mixture into the eggs, stirring constantly.
  3. Stir in butter, vanilla, and pecans and pour into crust.
  4. Bake in a 350°F oven for about 45 to 60 minutes or until set.
  5. Enjoy the best Pecan Pie that you’ve ever tasted!

Holiday Cookbook: The Very Best Pumpkin Pie

28 Nov

I’ve been MIA lately, but in my opinion a little break from technology is actually a good thing every now and then. I always spend the holidays baking, and thought it would be fun to share some of my favorites with you! Today let’s talk about my favorite holiday food, Pumpkin Pie. Once you try this recipe, you won’t want to use canned pumpkin ever again – I promise!

The Very Best Pumpkin Pie

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 pie pumpkin (or use a jack-o-lantern like I always do – it makes enough for 3 full pies!)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1.5 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1.5 cans evaporated milk

What You’ll Do:

  1. Prepare your pumpkin: scoop out all of the goop and seeds (I save the seeds and roast them!), cut the pumpkin into pieces, and place in a large microwavable dish. Add a few inches of water (no need to fully submerge!), cover with a towel, and cook for 20 minutes – or until it separates from the outer skin super easily and is mushy. (If you use a large pumpkin, you will need to microwave several parts at a time. If you hate microwaves for some reason, here are some other ways to prep the pumpkin along with pictures and the original recipe)
  2. Scoop out 3 cups of the pumpkin and place into a large bowl (per pie). Mash into a smooth consistency.
  3. Mix all of the other ingredients listed above and pour into a pie crust.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for an hour and a half (keep an eye on it, and you’ll know it’s ready when you place a knife in the center and it comes out pretty clean)
  5. Enjoy! Every time I make this, family & friends tell me it’s the best pie they’ve ever eaten… it’s simple and classic!

Crock Pot Veggie & Bean Soup

14 Nov

Did you know that it’s suuuuuper easy to make almost any kind of soup in your crock pot? One thing that I love about the cooler months is that meals in the crock pot are always incredibly delicious and incredibly easy. I really like to make a huge pot of soup and then divide it up into individual servings and freeze it – really great to bring to work, because it’s de-thawed and ready for the microwave by lunchtime! It’s also pretty cheap…

Crock Pot Veggie & Bean Soup

(today’s lunch! sorry for the poor quality!)

What You’ll Need:

  • Mixed veggies of any kind. For this particular batch, I used 2 potatoes (diced), 1 cup chopped carrots, 1 cup mushrooms, 1 cup peas, 1 cup onion (chopped), 1 cup corn, 1 cup peppers (chopped). Really, just use whatever you have on hand!
  • Beans of any kind… I had a random can of garbonzo beans that had been sitting in our cabinet for far too long, so I threw that in there.
  • Chicken broth, Chicken Boullion Cubes, or a mixture of both. Also, spices sich as salt and pepper, chili powder, etc.
  • Things to add that I didn’t: small shell noodles, lentils, cut up chicken or beef, whatever looks good!

What You’ll Do:

  1. Chop up all veggies and throw into your crock pot. Don’t fill it too full or it won’t be “soupy” enough… I usually fill mine about 1/3 of the way with veggies and beans.
  2. Add beans (and other things of your choosing)
  3. Add the broth. I use 1 cup water for every can of broth. If you don’t have broth, use the boullion cubes (I kind of prefer this or a mixture of the two). Just add 3 cubes per 1 cup water. Fill it up to the top…. for this particular batch I used 2 cups broth, 4 boullion cubes, and about 4 cups of water.
  4. Season with spices. I usually keep tasting and adding throughout the day… I keep it simple with salt, pepper, and chili powder but you can pretty much add whatever smells like it would be good! I honestly don’t measure spices I just toss them in…. I probably used around 1 tbs of each.
  5. Finally, turn your crock pot onto it’s lowest setting and let everything cook for about 5 hours! Enjoy!

My Favorite Side: Baked Potato Bites!

25 Oct

I’ve been feeling so exhausted this week… so let’s talk about carbs!

This is a dish that I’ve been making for a few years now, and it’s easy to make in a frying pan, in the oven, over a campfire, or even on the grill. I made ours in the oven last night, because it’s the easiest, most hands-off way. I like to call these Baked Potato Bites, because it’s all the goodness of a baked potato but it’s much easier to eat (and each bite is equally covered in toppings… a must!)

Baked Potato Bites

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 small potatoes
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • seasonings to taste: salt, pepper, oregano, chili powder
  • toppings – we use shredded cheese, bacon bits, and sour cream

What You’ll Do:

  • Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees
  • Cut up potatoes into bite size pieces and mix with chopped onions
  • Place the potatoes and onions on an ungreased cookie sheet. Cut up butter into liberal slices and place on top.
  • Add seasonings, and place inside the oven for 45 minutes (I usually mix everything up after 30 minutes)
  • Add your toppings, and enjoy!

 

What’s your favorite side dish?

Shrimp & Pasta: Easy, Delicious, and (somewhat) Healthy!

23 Oct

Around our house, we’ve been eating pretty horribly for the past month or so. My favorite foods include pizza, ice cream, and basically all carbs covered in butter. Needless to say, our stomachs needed a break.

So last night, after my boyfriend and I had been complaining about stomach pains due to our lovely diet, I decided to make something a little lighter and healthier than we are used to. We haven’t had shrimp in a while, and this recipe is quick and simple – ready in about 20 minutes!

Shrimp & Pasta: Easy, Delicious, and (somewhat) Healthy

What You’ll Need:

  • 1/2 box pasta (any kind will do)
  • 3 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • Mixed veggies, to taste (I used onions, peppers, and broccoli)
  • 1/2 bag of shrimp, cleaned
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 TBSP cream cheese
  • oregano to taste
  • a splash of white wine

What You’ll Do:

  • Boil water and cook the pasta all the way through.
  • While pasta is cooking, simmer the olive oil and garlic in a medium pan. add in the veggies, salt, and petter, and then at the very last minute, the shrimp (*shrimp cooks fast! don’t over cook it – it’s ready as soon as it turns pink!). Also, add in the wine and chicken broth.
  • Once the pasta is boiled, drain and add in oregano and cream cheese. Add this mixture to the shrimp and veggies and stir.
  • Allow just enough time for everything to warm up and mix together, and then serve warm.