29th July 2008

    No-Cook Stew: Santa Fe Summer Pot with Shrimp and Avocado


    Tonight, a dish that’s perfect for those hot summer evenings where you don’t want to turn on the stove or the oven: a “stew” made entirely of raw and precooked ingredients. Shrimp, cucumbers, and avocado are topped with a puree of tomatoes, onions, and peppers, then topped with cilantro and tortilla chips. This recipe comes from How to Eat Supper.

    Lisa says:

    Is this like gazpacho or something?

    Chris says:

    Sort of — it’s like the world’s best chunky salsa.

    Lisa says:

    Yum… seems pretty light if it’s just raw veggies and shrimp.

    Chris says:

    Yep! Light and refreshing… that lime juice brightens up the flavors a bit.

    Lisa says:

    So, you mentioned that you don’t have to turn on the oven, but we did anyway for the bread we had with it.

    Chris says:

    Yeah, well I also mentioned that it’s good for really hot nights, but it’s actually kinda cool and raining.

    Lisa says:

    True. It’s still delicious.

    Santa Fe Summer Pot with Shrimp and Avocado
    1/4 cup fresh lime juice
    1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
    2 large garlic cloves, minced
    1/2 jalapeño, seeded and minced
    1/4 tsp cumin
    1/4 tsp coriander
    1/4 tsp freshly-ground black pepper
    1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
    4 sprigs fresh cilantro
    1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
    1 ripe avocado, diced
    1 pound cooked peeled shrimp
    Handful tortilla chips, lightly crushed
    limes, cut into wedges

    In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, onion, garlic, jalapeño, and spices. Let marinate for 10 minutes.
    Place the tomatoes and cilantro sprigs into the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until the mixture is chunky. Add the onion mixture, and pulse five times.
    Divide the cucumber, avocado, and shrimp among four bowls. Spoon the tomato blend into the bowls. Garnish with the crushed tortilla chips, additional cilantro, and lime wedges.

    4 Servings

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    posted in How to Eat Supper, Main Dishes, Soups and Stews | 7 Comments

    8th June 2008

    Chicken & Shrimp Laksa

    Chicken & Shrimp Laksa

    Tonight Lisa made this Chicken & Shrimp Laksa, a curry laksa, adapted from a recipe in Asian Flavors. This Malaysian dish consists of wide rice noodles, chicken, and shrimp in a nicely seasoned coconut broth; stir-fried bean sprouts and snow peas add crunch, color, and texture to the soup.

    Lisa says:

    I think it needs just a little salt and a little bit of Sriracha.

    Chris says:

    Those noodles really soak up that broth; seems like it thickens as it sits. I like it.

    Lisa says:

    It would be really good with mushrooms and carrots… next time I’ll add those in.

    Chris says:

    Yum! And we’ll have to find shrimp paste; our anchovy-paste-and-fish-sauce substitute probably wasn’t quite as intense.

    Lisa says:

    Well there you go, now we have an excuse to make it again.

    Chicken and Shrimp Laksa
    2-3 tbsp peanut oil
    4 red shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
    2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
    1 tsp minced fresh lemon grass
    1/2 tsp shrimp paste
    1 red chili, seeded an finely chopped
    1 tbsp ground coriander
    2 1/2 cups chicken broth
    1 3/4 cups light coconut milk
    1 tbsp brown sugar
    1 boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
    16 oz shrimp, peeled and deveined
    9 oz flat rice noodles
    6 oz snow peas, sliced lengthwise
    4 oz bean sprouts
    scallions

    Soak the rice noodles until they are tender. Heat half the oil in a large saucepan and fry the shallots over low heat until softened. Add the garlic, lemon grass, shrimp paste, red chili, and coriander and continue to cook over low heat for two to three minutes. Stir in the chicken broth, coconut milk, and sugar and bring to a simmer. Add the chicken, shrimp, and noodles and leave over a low heat until the chicken is cooked through.
    Meanwhile, heat the rest of the oil in a wok and stir-fry the snow peas and bean sprouts for two minutes or until they start to soften.
    Spoon the laksa into serving dishes and stir in the snow peas and bean sprouts. Garnish with scallions, and extra chili peppers.

    4 Servings

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    posted in Asian, Asian Flavors, Main Dishes | 1 Comment

    25th May 2008

    Salt and Pepper Grilled Shrimp

    Salt and Pepper Grilled Shrimp
    We recently picked up the full-color edition of Steven Raichlen’s Barbecue Bible, and this is the first recipe we’ve made from the book. If this one is any indication, I’m guessing we’re going to have a great time grilling this summer! In this recipe, shrimp is briefly marinated in lime, salt, and white pepper, and then dipped in mixture of the same. Very simple, and it came together extremely quickly.

    Chris says:

    I love grilled shrimp — it cooks so fast that it’s in my mouth that much sooner.

    Lisa says:

    I really like the dipping sauce. Very limey.

    Chris says:

    It’s been a while since we’ve had shrimp and left the shells on — a bit messy while eating, but they seem more flavorful.

    Lisa says:

    It looks like I ate a ton of food with all these shells on my plate. You know, we could probably use these shells for something.

    Chris says:

    Yep — if you don’t want to toss them, you can use those shells to make paper or dress wounds.

    Lisa says:

    Um, okay, I thought you were going to suggest making a shrimp-shell stock…

    Chris says:

    Oh. Yeah. That makes more sense.

    Salt and Pepper Grilled Shrimp
    1 1/2 lb pounds large-jumbo shrimp, deveined, shells on
    3 tbsp fresh lime juice, plus 1 large lime, quartered
    3 tsp coarse salt
    3 tsp ground white pepper

    Rinse the shrimp under cold running water, then drain and pat dry with paper towels. Place the shrimp in a large glass baking dish, sprinkle the lime juice and 1 tsp each salt and white pepper over them, and toss to coat. Let stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes.
    Meanwhile, cut the lime lengthwise into 4 wedges. Put a lime wedge in each of 4 small shallow bowls or dishes. Place a small mound of salt (1/2 tsp) on one side the lime wedge and a mound of white pepper (1/2 tsp) on the other. Set aside.
    Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.
    When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Arrange the shrimp, in their shells, on the hot grate and grill, turning with tongs, until the meat is firm and pink, about 2 minutes per side.
    Transfer the shrimp to serving plates. To eat, squeeze the lime wedge over the salt and pepper and stir two or three times with chopsticks; peel the shrimp and dip it in the lime mixture.

    4 Servings

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    posted in Main Dishes, The Barbecue Bible, Vietnamese | 4 Comments

    7th April 2008

    Fisherman’s Rice


    A few nights ago I made this surprisingly easy and quick rice dish — somewhere between a paella and fried rice — found in The Border Cookbook. We used chicken chorizo instead of pork/beef to lower the fat content, and considering there’s only a teaspoon of oil added, it was pretty healthy.

    Chris says:

    Yay for sausage!

    Lisa says:

    That chicken chorizo is pretty spicy…

    Chris says:

    Yeah, it’s good. The dish itself is pretty subtle, so I think it works well to have the distinct spices from the sausage and the contrasting cool avocado.

    Lisa says:

    I really like this dish — you’re right, it’s reminiscent of both fried rice and paella.

    Chris says:

    This would be good topped with some of that tomatillo-chipotle salsa that we made with the Arroz Con Pollo.

    Fisherman’s Rice
    —————-
    4 oz bulk chorizo (I used chicken chorizo)
    1 tsp vegetable oil
    1/2 medium onion, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 cup uncooked rice
    2 cups chicken stock
    1 tsp soy sauce
    1/2 tsp white vinegar
    1 bay leaf
    12 oz shrimp, cooked as desired
    1/2 Haas avocado, diced
    2 medium tomatillos, husked, roasted, and pureed

    In a heavy skillet, fry the chorizo in oil over medium heat. When just browned, add the onion, garlic, and rice and saute briefly until the rice is translucent. Pour in the stock, soy sauce, vinegar, add the bay leaf, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 to 18 minutes until most of the liquid is absorbed.
    Stir in the cooked shrimp, avocado, and pureed tomatillos, cover again, and continue cooking for 2 more minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let the rice steam, covered, for at least 10 minutes. Stir and serve.

    3-4 Servings

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    posted in Main Dishes, The Border Cookbook | 7 Comments

    17th March 2008

    Nasi Goreng (Indonesian Fried Rice)


    Carrie was over tonight to enjoy the first recipe we’ve made from Asian Flavors, a book we’ve been sitting on since Christmas. The chapters in the book are divided by ingredients (for example: lime leaf, coconut, etc.), and the recipes in each section feature that key ingredient. This fried rice dish was featured in the Soy chapter and uses kecap manis, a thick, sweet soy sauce used in many Indonesian dishes.

    Carrie says:

    Now *this* is a Carrie dinner!

    Chris says:

    Mmmm… I like the little egg on top. I’m usually not a fan, but this is really paper-thin.

    Lisa says:

    Yum, I like this dish! Cathy will be glad to hear we finally made something from the book. :)

    Chris says:

    It’s almost a meat-stravaganza… small shrimp, jumbo shrimp… chicken…

    Lisa says:

    So you just followed the recipe exactly?

    Chris says:

    Pretty much… used a bit less oil than listed below… so there was some sticking to the wok… but that’s a small price to pay!

    Nasi Goreng (Indonesian Fried Rice)
    ———————————–
    1 tsp sambal oelek
    2 tbsp kecap manis
    1 tbsp ketchup
    4 tbsp peanut oil
    4 scallions, chopped
    2 carrots, sliced
    4 oz button mushrooms, sliced
    1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
    1 chicken breast, skinned and cut into small pieces
    4 oz frozen peas
    8 oz long grain rice, cooked *
    4 oz small peeled shrimp
    8 jumbo shrimp
    1 large egg, beaten

    * Cook the rice the day before and refrigerate
    Prepare and cook the jumbo shrimp as desired (I marinated in lime juice and grilled them on skewers).
    Mix together the first three ingredients and set aside. Heat two tablespoons of peanut oil in a wok and stir-fry the scallions and carrots for two minutes over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and garlic and stir-fry for another two minutes. Remove and set aside.
    Add 1 tbsp of peanut oil to the wok, increase the heat to high, and stir-fry the chicken for two minutes. Return the vegetables to the wok, add the peas, rice, and small shrimp and pour in the sambal oelek mixture. Toss the ingredients together over the heat for three minutes until piping hot. Pile into a serving dish, arrange the jumbo shrimp around, and transfer to a low oven to keep warm.
    Heat the remaining peanut oil in a small skillet, add the egg, and cook until it sets as a thin omelet. Tip out of the skillet onto a cutting board and cut into strips. Arrange the strips over the rice mixture in a lattice and serve.

    4 Servings

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    posted in Asian Flavors, Indonesian, Main Dishes | 4 Comments


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