Simple Supper: Lemon Pepper Shrimp Scampi

On Friday, at the end of a long day (and after it’d been awhile since the grocery store and I visited), I was thankful for the frozen bag of shrimp in my freezer. Within 20 minutes I’d cooked up this light and simple shrimp dish for supper. I used rice in place of the orzo and substituted mixed, chopped fresh herbs in place of the parsley. This meal will definitely be added to our supper rotation. To balance out the meal, add a green salad, or other lightly sauteed veggies.

LEMON PEPPER SHRIMP SCAMPI
(from Cooking Light)
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1 cup uncooked orzo (use rice to make gluten-free)
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
7 teaspoons unsalted butter, divided
1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp (I actually used medium shrimp)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Cook orzo according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain. Place orzo in a bowl. Stir in parsley and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cover and keep warm.

While orzo cooks, melt 1 Tablespoon butter in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Sprinkle shrimp with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add half of shrimp to pan; saute 2 minutes or until almost done. Transfer shrimp to a plate. Melt 1 teaspoon butter in pan. Add remaining shrimp to pan; saute 2 minutes or until almost done. Transfer to plate.

Melt remaining 1 Tablespoon butter in pan. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Stir in shrimp, juice, and pepper; cook 1 minute or until shrimp are done.

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Simple Supper: Cajun Shrimp and Rice

Before I jump into today’s recipe, I want to announce that the winner of last Friday’s Table Inspirations book giveaway is….Amanda! Her favorite summer meal is a BLT and sweet corn. Sounds delicious!

 

I’ve taken to purchasing a package of frozen shrimp about once a month on my quest to teach myself to like shrimp (I’m getting there!). They make a quick supper, which is a huge draw for me at the end of a long work day. I really enjoyed this dish; it’s filled with spice. And aside from researching and mixing up my own Cajun seasoning, this came together super quick. Jeremy was more than happy to take the leftovers for lunch the next day.

CAJUN SHRIMP AND RICE
(from Food Network Magazine, April 2010)
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1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails intact
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
2 bunches scallions, chopped
3 cups cooked rice
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Heat the butter, olive oil, and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the Cajun seasoning and shrimp and cook, stirring until the shrimp begin to curl, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the tomatoes and scallions to the skillet and cook, stirring, about 1 minute. Add the rice and 1/4 cup water and continue to cook until the rice is warmed through and the shrimp is opaque, about 3 more minutes. Stir in the parsley and serve with lemon wedges, if desired.

International Cuisine: Stir-Fried Shrimp

I’m a bit iffy about shrimp. The texture troubles me and I dislike cocktail sauce (the way shrimp is typically available to me); however, my husband likes shrimp. Thus my quest to find a shrimp recipe(s) that I enjoy. Aldi sells frozen bags of de-veined, peeled shrimp for under $4. I bought a bag of the medium-size and set out to find a recipe.

The Cooking Light website offered several recipes that sounded quite good, but for the sake of ingredients on hand, I tried the Stir-Fried Shrimp with Spicy Orange Sauce. I added a bag of frozen sugar snap peas and diced onion (didn’t have the green onions) and served it on a bed of vermicelli noodles. The flavor was delicious. The texture, I’ll continue to acquire. Overall, a success and a recipe I’d definitely consider making again and tweaking with additional veggies.

Bonus, this is easily made gluten-free, if you use gf soy sauce (La Choy brand is gf, also San-J wheat-free Tamari).

STIR-FRIED SHRIMP WITH SPICY ORANGE SAUCE
(slightly adapted from Cooking Light website)
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1 1/2 pounds peeled, de-veined large shrimp
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 Tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 Tablespoons honey
1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon chile paste with garlic (I added 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes and an extra clove of garlic)
2 Tablespoons canola oil
1 Tablespoon minced peeled fresh garlic
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup chopped green onions
frozen vegetables of choice (optional)

Place shrimp in a medium bowl. Sprinkle with cornstarch; toss to coat. Set aside.

Combine juice, soy sauce, honey, rice vinegar, and chile paste, stirring with a whisk. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or a wok over medium-high heat. Add the minced ginger and garlic; stir-fry for 15 seconds, until fragrant. Add shrimp mixture and any additional veggies of choice; stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add juice mixture and onions; cook 2 minutes or until the sauce thickens and shrimp is done, stirring frequently. Serve immediately over a bed of rice, vermicelli noodles, or stir-fried veggies.

International Cuisine: Chinese Main Dishes

We love to order take-out every once in awhile. These recipes made me realize that I should make Chinese at home more often!

SZECHWAN SHRIMP
(adapted from allrecipes.com)
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4 Tb. water
2 Tb. ketchup
1 Tb. soy sauce
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. honey
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1 Tb. peanut or vegetable oil
1/4 c. sliced green onions
4 cloves garlic, minced
12 ounces peeled, deviened shrimp with tails

In a bowl, stir together water, ketchup, soy sauce, cornstarch, honey, crushed red pepper, and ground ginger. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in green onions and garlic; cook 30 seconds. Stir in shrimp, and toss to coat with oil. Stir in sauce. Cook and stir until sauce is bubbly and thickened and shrimp is fully cooked – about 5-7 minutes.

ASIAN BEEF with PEA PODS
(adapted from allrecipes.com)
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3 Tb. soy sauce
2 Tb. rice wine vinegar
1 Tb. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1 Tb. peanut oil
2 tsp. fresh ginger root, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. beef round steak, cut into thin strips
8 oz. pea pods

In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine, brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside.

Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. Stir-fry ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add the steak and stir-fry for 2 min. or until evenly browned. Add the snow peas and stir-fry for an additional 3 min. Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce is thick. Serve immediately.

SWEET & SOUR CHICKEN
(adapted from allrecipes.com)
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1 (16 oz.) can pineapple chunks, drained (juice reserved)
2 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/4 c. cornstarch
1 3/4 c. water
3/4 c. white sugar
1/2 c. distilled white vinegar
2 drops orange food color
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cut into 1 inch cubes
2 1/4 c. self-rising flour
2 Tb. vegetable oil
2 Tb. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 egg
2 c. water
1 quart vegetable or canola oil for frying

In a saucepan, combine 1 1/2 cups water, sugar, vinegar, reserved pineapple juice, and orange food coloring. Heat to boiling. Turn off heat. Combine 1/4 cup cornstarch and 1/4 cup water; slowly stir into saucepan. Continue stirring until mixture thickens.

Combine flour, 2 tablespoons oil, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, salt, white pepper, and egg. Add 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 cups water gradually to make a thick batter. Stir to blend thoroughly. Add chicken pieces, and stir until chicken is well coated.

Heat oil in skillet, fryer or wok to 360 degrees F. Fry chicken pieces in hot oil until golden. Remove chicken, and drain on paper towels.

When ready to serve, layer green peppers, pineapple chunks, and cooked chicken pieces on a platter. Pour hot sweet and sour sauce over top. Serve with steamed rice if desired.