Cajun Shrimp Pasta

The following recipe was prepared for my Chef Spotlight Dinner highlighting New Orleans chefs. You can read about it and get other recipes from the event HERE.

Cajun Shrimp Pasta
shared at the event by Betsy
recipe can be found here

2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon basil
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 cup diced peeled and seeded tomatoes
2 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
3 cup chicken or shrimp stock
1 pound vermicelli pasta or linguine
1 pound fresh shrimp, peeled and deviened (can substitute chicken)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions
Saute the onion in the olive oil for approximately four minutes. Add the garlic and stir. Add thyme, cayenne and black peppers, and basil and cook at low heat for five more minutes. Add everything else except for the pasta, shrimp, and cheese, and cook over low heat for an hour. Saute the shrimp in some butter and garlic until three-quarters cooked (pink, but not totally opaque). Add the sauce and cook for an additional two minutes. Add the cooked pasta and toss well with the grated cheese. Serve hot.

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Leftovers Aren’t So Bad…

One of our staple dishes I resort to whenever we have leftovers is fried rice. It’s a dish that we make to use up leftover veggies and meats we have on hand… and the rice we use is always cold. That’s key for perfect fried rice, just like what you’d get at Chinese restaurants and how my parents made theirs for their catering business. Here’s my recipe for fried rice:

1 cup leftover meats – pork, chicken, beef, seafood
1-2 eggs
3-4 cloves minced garlic
1/2 onion finely diced
3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup chopped vegetables (fresh or frozen)
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1-2 tablespoons light or dark soy sauce
1-2 cups prepared rice, cold (or day old)

In a hot skillet or wok, heat oil.
Add garlic and onions & stir.
Add leftover meats of your choice, chopped up in bite sized pieces.
Stir fry meats until you get them a bit crispy.
Push the meats aside and crack eggs into the pan.
Scramble the eggs into the pan until cooked.
Add cold rice over the eggs & meat into the pan, making sure to crumble it in your fingers. (Dumping a large chunk of rice is not going to work here. You need to crumble it so it separates nicely).
Add salt, pepper, onion & garlic powders and soy sauce; toss.
Allow the rice to heat up and absorb the spices and soy sauce, tossing to help it along.
Add the fresh or frozen veggies and toss into the rice.
Continue cooking it all on high heat until rice is heated through and veggies are cooked.

I used leftover grilled chicken and some frozen veggies for lunch and served this with some homemade eggrolls – which I’ll be dedicating a whole post to in a couple of week. I’m teaching an eggroll class so I’ll save the details and recipes on making eggrolls then!

Seafood Paella

The following recipe was made and shared at my Tapas party. You can read about the event and view links to the other recipes shared HERE.

Seafood Paella
shared at the event by Joelen
recipe adapted from here

3 tablespoons organic extra virgin olive oil

1 large head garlic (or 12 cloves), peeled and chopped
1 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups dry white wine
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 cup chopped roasted red peppers
1/4 cup chopped roasted tomatoes
1/4 cup julienned carrots (matchstick)
2 cups frozen green peas, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 pound shrimp
1/2 pound calamari rings
1/2 pound sea scallops, halved
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley, to garnish

Ingredient Options: If you don’t care for mussels or any of the other seafood ingredients, simply substitute more of your favorite.

In a paella pan or large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté garlic until soft, about 3 minutes. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add rice and sauté for about 4 minutes or until rice becomes translucent, stirring frequently. Add 3 cups of the broth and 1 cup wine, saffron, paprika, marjoram, red pepper flakes and flakes and salt. Cover pan and reduce heat to simmer. Cook 15 minutes. Check occasionally, keeping moist with broth if needed. Add all seafood, peas, red peppers, carrots, roasted tomatoes and the remaining broth and wine. Squeeze lemon over entire dish and sprinkle with parsley. Serve straight from the pan.

Shrimp Ceviche

The following recipe was made and shared at my Tapas party. You can read about the event and view links to the other recipes shared HERE.

Shrimp Ceviche
shared at the event by Kurt
recipe from here

1 pound medium-small shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 Tbsp salt
3/4 cup lime juice (juice from 4-6 limes)
3/4 cup lemon juice (juice from 2-3 lemons)
1 cup finely chopped red onion
1 serrano chile, ribs and seeds removed, minced
1 cup chopped cilantro
1 cucumber, peeled diced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 avocado, peeled, seed removed, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

In a large pot, bring to a boil 4 quarts of water, salted with 2 Tbsp salt. Add the shrimp and cook for 1 minute to 2 minutes max, depending on size of shrimp. (Over-cooking the shrimp will turn it rubbery.) Remove shrimp with a slotted spoon and place into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.

Drain the shrimp. Cut each piece of shrimp in half, or into inch-long pieces. Place shrimp in a glass or ceramic bowl. Mix in the lime and lemon juice. Cover and refrigerate for a half hour.

Mix in the chopped red onion and serrano chile. Refrigerate an additional half hour. Right before serving, add the cilantro, cucumber, and avocado.

Cold Paella Salad

The following recipe was shared during my Chef Spotlight Dinner highlighting recipes of Chef Wolfgang Puck. You can view other recipes and pictures of the event HERE.

Cold Paella Salad
shared at the event by Robert
Original recipe here

1 small whole chicken (about 2 1/2 to 3 pounds), cut into 8 pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and de-veined
1/2 red onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, smashed and roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, cored, de-veined, and diced
1 green bell pepper, cored, de-veined, and diced
1/2 teaspoon saffron
1/2 pound chorizo, sliced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups rice
4 cups chicken stock or water
1 pound mussels, cleaned and de-bearded
3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
Fresh Herb Vinaigrette, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Season chicken pieces generously with salt and pepper. Add oil to a large, heavy, oven-safe skillet and heat over high heat. When oil is almost smoking, carefully add chicken to pan and sear until almost cooked through; remove chicken from pan and set aside. Add shrimp to oil and sear until almost done; remove shrimp from pan and set aside.

Add more oil if needed, reduce the heat to medium, and then saute the onions and garlic until translucent, about 5 minutes; do not let onions and garlic brown. Add bell peppers and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add saffron and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chorizo and brown for 2 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook for about 5 minutes. Add rice, and stir until the rice is well coated, about 1 minute. Add stock, return the chicken and shrimp to the pan, and add mussels and peas.

Transfer skillet to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven and drizzle vinaigrette over. Refrigerate and serve chilled or at room temperature. If serving at room temperature, refrigerate until 30 minutes before serving and then bring to room temperature.

Fresh Herb Vinaigrette: 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves 1/4 cup minced chives 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1/4 cup sherry vinegar Salt and freshly ground black pepper 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Put chopped herbs in a medium bowl. Add garlic and vinegar. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Whisk in olive oil until combined. Set aside until paella is ready.

Wasabi.. not only for Sushi!

In an attempt to use up some leftover wasabi, I decided to make a sushi inspired sauce combining wasabi and soy sauce. I call this, shrimp with wasabi soy noodles.Here’s my recipe:

1 lb large raw shrimp
1/2 package Shanghai egg noodles

2 cups water

2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon wasabi
1 tablespoon sugar
splash of mirin
splash of sesame oil
1/2 cup julienned green beans
1 tablespoon slivered almonds

In a wok, add water & shrimp.

Cook shrimp until pink.
Add remaining ingredients except noodles, beans and almonds.
Allow shrimp to simmer and absorb flavors.
Remove shrimp and set aside.
Add noodles and cook until softened and sauce is absorbed.
Add beans and almonds; toss to coat.
Serve noodles with shrimps on the side.

Shrimp oreganata

This recipe was made for my 2007 Holiday Party featuring an Italian inspired menu. You can read about it and view the additional recipes I made for this event HERE.

Shrimp oreganata

3lb large cooked shrimp (31-40 count)

olive oil for sauteeing
1/4 cup minced garlic
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon italian seasoning
1 box sun-dried tomato Wheat Thins
1 stick butter, melted
Chopped parsley (garnish)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a skillet, coat bottom with olive oil.
Saute garlic and onion in olive oil.
Turn off heat and toss in frozen cooked shrimp in baking pan.
Add italian seasoning.
Process Wheat Thins in a food processor to crumbs.
In a bowl combine processed Wheat Thins with melted butter.
Sprinkle this cracker mixture over shrimp.
Cover with foil and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
Garnish with chopped parsley.