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Posts Tagged ‘recipes’

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While on vacation last summer in Carolina Beach, I ordered the shrimp and grits the last evening of our vacation. Being a northerner I really didn’t know what to expect. I hadn’t tried grits before, only because I don’t like the name. It really is an ugly word. Much to my delight it was super yummy! It was the best meal of our trip and I wished I’d had it every day. This version is healthy and easy. My kids however thought it too lemony, so you may want to tone down the lemon if you’re not a lemon lover. I thought it was perfect.

Lemon and Garlic Shrimp and Grits

3/4 cup instant grits
Course salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/4 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, (with or without tails, you decide)
1 can diced tomatoes with liquid
2 large cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1/2 a lemon, plus wedges for serving
2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley

Bring 3 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat, covered. Uncover and slowly whisk in the grits, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Reduce heat to medium low and cook, stirring occasionally until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the parmesan and 1 tablespoon butter. Remove from heat and keep covered.

While the grits are cooking start your shrimp. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the shrimp and garlic, toss and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until shrimp are pink. Add the tomatoes and liquid and heat through for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and parsley, stirring to coat the shrimp with the sauce.

Divide the grits in 4 shallow bowls and top with the shrimp and sauce. Serve with extra lemon wedges.

Serves 4

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It’s been a long time since I posted! Shame on me! This tasty recipe for baked egg rolls is super delicious, easy and very healthy. My five year old helped me “roll” the egg rolls, and both my kids loved the end result. The green onions are the only ingrediant that requires chopping. Everything else is just opening packages. I found egg roll wrappers in the produce section by the tofu, and oyster sauce is in the Asian food aisle. Get your kids to help and have fun! (Yes my daughter is pictured below still in her jammies at dinner time. And yes she’s wearing Christmas jammies in April.)

Crispy Baked Egg Rolls

2 tbsp. olive oil
16 oz. bag cole slaw mix (cabbage or broccoli slaw)
4 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 cups bean sprouts
1 tbsp. white wine (vermouth or sake)
2 tbsp. oyster sauce
2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 eggs (optional)
1/2 tbsp. cornstarch
20 egg roll wrappers

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Heat oil in a large pan over medium to medium high heat. Add coleslaw, green onions, bean sprouts, wine, oyster sauce, and soy sauce. Stir- fry until cabbage is wilted, 3 – 5 minutes. Push contents of pan to the outside leaving a well in the center. Whisk eggs in a small bowl and add to pan. Let the eggs cook for about 1 minute then stir until soft scrambled. Mix everything together. Mix cornstarch with 1 tbsp. cold water and stir into cabbage mixture. Stir for about 1 minute until sauce is thickened.

Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Place a 1/4 cup of the mixture in center of egg roll wrapper turned like a diamond.

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Fold the bottom corner up over the filling. Fold in both sides, then roll upward. Put a dab of water on the top corner to seal the roll. Place on baking sheet seam side down.

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Repeat with remaining mixture and wrappers, about 20. Egg rolls can be placed close together on baking sheet but cannot touch. Spray the tops with cooking spray and bake until golden brown, about 15 to 18 minutes. Serve with sweet and sour sauce and Chinese hot mustard.

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When I read this recipe I was totally weirded out by the use of tapioca. I have never purchased tapioca in any form, but it does a great job of thickening this slow-cooker stew. After I made a few modifications to the seasoning, I really liked this stew. Its easy to put together, no pre-browning of the beef required, and pre-sliced mushrooms are a big time saver. If you aren’t a fan of onions, decrease the amount or use sweet onions, because they stay rather powerful even after 6 or 8 hours in the crock-pot. Doesn’t crock-pot sound terribly old hat? The other great thing is that this stew is low calorie, only 345 calories and 11 grams of fat per 1 3/4 cup serving according to Cooking Light.

Slow-Cooker Beef Vegetable Stew
2 tablespoons uncooked granulated tapioca
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons salt
15 ounces tomato juice (approx.)
4 cups chopped onion
3 cups chopped celery
2 1/2 cups (1/4 inch thick) sliced carrots
2 (8 ounce) packages pre-sliced mushrooms
2 pounds beef stew meat

Place first 5 ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
Combine onion, celery, carrots, mushrooms and beef in an electric slow cooker, add juice mixture. Cover and cook on high 5 hours or low 8 to 10 hours until beef is tender.

Slow Cooker Beef Vegetable Stew

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Every once in a while when I accidentally make something really yummy I remember to write it down right away.  I made this soup for my kids when my 4-year-old was sick and my 5-year-old specifically asked for tofu.  I used organic chicken stock from a carton, which I really think is better than the alternatives at the grocery store.  Someday I might become one of those amazing people that makes their own chicken stock, but not yet.  If you are firm hater of cornstarch, don’t use it.  I used 1 tablespoon just to thicken the soup slightly. 

I think my husband started the habit of eating rice with soup, a habit my kids have embraced with exuberance.  We also had some Korean pear slices making the meal very well-rounded.  The soup would also be a nice side dish for fried rice or some stir-fry chicken and veggies.

Tofu Egg Drop Soup with Spinach

  • 2 cups organic chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ – ½ cup soy sauce (you can always add more at the table)
  • ½ cup apple juice (weird, I know, you have to trust me)
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon minced onion
  • ½ teaspoon rice vinegar (optional)
  • 14 oz package firm tofu, drained and diced
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • big handful of fresh baby spinach (2 cups)

In a large sauce pan bring the stock, water, soy sauce, and apple juice to a simmer.  Add the pepper, garlic powder, minced onion, and vinegar.  Add the tofu and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Dissolve the cornstarch in a cold water and add to the simmering soup.  Stir constantly until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.  Pour in egg in a slow steady stream while stirring.  Stir for about 1 more minute.  Turn off heat and add spinach and sesame oil.  Makes about 5 –  1 cup servings.

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Gingerbread pancakes, they really need no introduction, except YUM!  This is a great way to use up that little bit of molasses sitting around from the gingerbread cookies you made at Christmas.  My kids loved these with maple syrup and butter.  The molasses is the only sweetener, so if you don’t have enough add a little brown sugar to make 3 tablespoons.  Enjoy!

Gingerbread Pancakes

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3 tablespoons molasses (not robust or blackstrap)
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

In a medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices.  In a small bowl whisk together molasses, egg, sour cream,  milk, and melted butter; add to the flour mixture and stir until just combined.  Let the batter sit for about 10 minutes.

Heat a griddle or large skillet over medium to medium high heat until a drop of water scatters on surface.  Either spray with cooking spray or brush with butter.  Drop ¼ cup of batter per pancake on griddle and cook until bubbles appear on surface and edges look dry, 1 to 2 minutes.  Flip and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes.  Makes 10 – 12 4-inch pancakes.

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I made up this pasta recipe when I was in college and wanted to use pantry items I already had around.  I’ve been making it for years and I thought it was too boring to post until a friend asked for the recipe recently and his family gave it rave reviews.  It can be made very simply with dry basil and parmesan from the green container, or prettied up with fresh basil and fancy grated parmesan.  I made it the original way most recently and added some beautiful sautéed shrimp.  Other fantastic additions are chopped kalamata olives and sun-dried tomatoes.  You could even toss some spinach with the hot pasta to make it a complete meal.  There is a lot of garlic, so be prepared.

Mary Anne Pasta

  • 1 – 13 oz package spaghetti, thin spaghetti, or angel hair pasta (I used whole grain, but the flavor is better with regular pasta)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons dried basil or about 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes, or a dash if serving kiddies
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Grated parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions, don’t forget to add salt to the cooking water.  While pasta is cooking, in a glass measuring cup, combine the olive oil, garlic, basil, pepper flakes, and salt and pepper.  When the pasta is almost done microwave the olive oil mixture for 30 to 45 seconds.  Watch it closely, it needs to bubble and sizzle for a few seconds, but no longer because it will scorch.  You should be able to smell the garlic before you open the door.  Drain the pasta when done and return to empty cooking pot.  Pour the olive oil mixture over the pasta and toss well.  Add the cheese and toss until combined.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

For sautéed shrimp:  Peel and devein shrimp (about 1 lb).  Toss clean shrimp in a bowl with 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 to 1 ½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning.  In a non-stick pan over medium to medium high heat melt 2 tablespoons butter.  Add the shrimp and saute for about 2 – 3 minutes per side until opaque.  Be careful not  to over cook the shrimp or they will get tough.  Serve with pasta.

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Thank you for a great year!  M.A. Eats had a fantastic first year.  Thank you for reading and commenting.  My most popular post was Vegan Chocolate Cake, followed by Macaroni and Cheese, then Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars.  I’m reposting the Chocolate Cake recipe below with instructions for making wonderful cupcakes.  I hope you all had a wonderful 2010 and best wishes for the New Year!

Simple and Delicious Chocolate Cupcakes

  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1  teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup olive oil (or canola or vegetable oil work too)
  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Place cupcake papers in two standard muffin pans.  Spray the surface of the pan with cooking spray so that the cupcake tops do not stick to pan.  In a large bowl stir together dry ingredients, sugar, flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa.  Add water, olive oil, vinegar and vanilla.  Beat by hand with a fork until combined.  Batter should have a uniform appearance with no lumps.  Fill each cupcake paper 3/4 full.  Bake in middle rack of oven for 20 – 22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Dust with powdered sugar if desired.  Makes 24 cupcakes.

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