Saturday, July 31, 2010

Pasta with Rosemary Shrimp Scampi


Coarse salt and ground pepper
12 ounces spaghetti
1 pound large (31 to 35) peeled and deveined frozen shrimp, tails on (if desired), thawed
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook spaghetti until al dente; reserve 1/2 cup pasta water. Add shrimp to pot, and stir. Immediately drain spaghetti and shrimp, and set aside (the shrimp will continue to cook).

In same pot, heat oil over medium. Add garlic, rosemary, and red-pepper flakes. Cook, stirring, until garlic is golden, 1 to 3 minutes.

Remove from heat; return pasta and shrimp to pot. Add lemon juice and enough pasta water to create a thin sauce that coats pasta. Season with salt and pepper, and serve.

Courtesy of Pasta with Rosemary Shrimp Scampi and more delicious recipes, smart cooking tips, and video demonstrations on

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas

I am on a chicken kick.

Grilled Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas via Real Simple

Serves 4 | Hands-on Time: 15m | Total Time: 20m

1 2- to 2 1/2-pound rotisserie chicken, meat shredded
4 cups baby spinach (about 3 ounces)
1 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack (6 ounces)
4 large flour tortillas
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup store-bought fresh salsa
1/4 cup sour cream

1. Heat grill to medium. In a large bowl, combine the chicken, spinach, and cheese. Dividing evenly, place the mixture on one half of each tortilla. Fold the other half over to cover.
2. Grill the quesadillas until the cheese has melted and the tortillas are crisp, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Serve with the avocado, salsa, and sour cream.

Before you grate cheese, coat the grater with cooking spray. It will be easier to use and wash.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Good salads

A really good salad.

1/4 cup whole-grain mustard
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 pounds chicken cutlets
4 small zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
4 Roma (plum) tomatoes, cut lengthwise in half
1 large red onion, sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rings
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 5-ounce bag salad greens

In a medium bowl, whisk together the mustard, apple juice, vinegar, 2 tablespoons water, 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper, and 1/2 cup of the oil. Transfer 1/2 cup of the mixture to a large resealable plastic bag and refrigerate the rest. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Add to the bag, seal, and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat grill to medium. Place the zucchini, tomatoes, and onion on a baking sheet. Add the salt and the remaining oil and pepper and toss.

Grill the chicken and vegetables, turning occasionally, for about 10 minutes total. Transfer to a cutting board and roughly chop the ingredients.

Divide the salad greens among individual bowls and top with the chicken, vegetables, and the reserved dressing.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Beer Marinated Pork Chops

If you like pork chops, you have to try this recipe:

- 4 pork chops
- 8 oz. beer
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 T fresh ginger (or 1 t dried ginger)
- 2 T brown sugar

Mix the beer, soy sauce, ginger and brown sugar in a bowl. Place the pork chops into a container (I used a tupperware container) and pour the marinade over the chops. Cover the container and refrigerate overnight. Prepare a fire in the grill and cook the chops for 6-7 minutes per side. Remove the chops from the grill, cover with foil and allow them to rest for 10 minutes.

Cook's Notes: This recipe was easy to make a delicious. Next time, I will add more brown sugar and use fresh ginger

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Another excellent chicken recipe

I was flying solo Friday night while Paul was busy taking care of all the logistics at the Relay for Life. I wanted chicken. I wanted easy (read bake) and I wanted quick. Oh and it had to be delicious. This little recipe was all of the above. And with nominal ingredients needed, the possibilities to change it up are endless.

Garlic Chicken

2 teaspoons crushed garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
Warm the garlic and olive oil to blend the flavors. In a separate dish, combine the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dip the chicken breasts in the olive oil and garlic mixture, then into the bread crumb mixture. Place in a shallow baking dish.
Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until no longer pink and juices run clear.

Cook's notes
You could add almost anything to the mixture - crushed red pepper, rosemary, basil, etc. Also, I didn't cook it by time. I turned the oven on the convection setting, stuck the probe in the chicken breast and cooked it to 165. I let it sit for 10 minutes.

It was fantastic.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Potent Potable

This is the first drink that I will have at the cottage.  Guaranteed.  And thank you Abi and Grace.

Bourbon Slush
1 cup Sugar
6 oz. Frozen Orange Juice
12 oz. Frozen Lemonade
2 cups Hot Tea (2 cups hot water with 2 tea bags.  Steep 5 minutes)
2 cups Bourbon
6 cups Water

1.    Mix all the above in large bowl.
2.    Freeze overnight.  (We place the mixture in a Tupperware tub with lid.)
3.    Take out of freezer and let stand for ½ hour.
4.    Spoon into glasses and garnish with cherry.
5.    Keep mixture refrigerated while serving.


Saturday, March 20, 2010

Chicken and Potatoes with Mustard Vinaigrette

New at the cafe!  We were feeling blah and uninspired in the kitchen.  I had this simple recipe delivered to my inbox via Real Simple.  It is easy, delicious and provides great leftovers.  

1  pound  small red- and white-skinned potatoes, mixed
Boneless, skinless meat from 1 rotisserie chicken (about 4 cups)
1 1/2  tablespoons  kosher salt
1  tablespoon  Dijon mustard
2  tablespoons  white wine vinegar
1 large clove garlic, minced
1  teaspoon  honey
1  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
6  tablespoons  olive oil
2  tablespoons  capers, drained
½ bunch watercress, stemmed

Place the potatoes and 1 tablespoon of the salt in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Drain and set aside. Place the chicken in a large bowl and set aside. Using a whisk, combine the mustard, vinegar, garlic, and honey in a medium bowl. Add the remaining salt and the pepper. While whisking, gradually add the oil in a thin, steady stream until a medium-thick vinaigrette is formed. Halve the potatoes and combine with the chicken. Add the capers and vinaigrette, gently tossing with the chicken mixture. Fold in the watercress just before serving.

Cooks notes
We opted out of the rotisserie chicken and just used baked chicken breasts.  We didn't use watercress, rather we used steamed asparagus with it.  I could also see swapping out the capers and adding rosemary.    

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Best for chips

Deirdre writing. We have been slackers - work, travel and a little thing called a cottage have prevented much sharing.  Until today! 

This weekend, we had a friend over to hang out and cook.  The best thing she made, even better than the shrimp, scallops and chicken pasta, was the salsa.  So good and so blessed easy. 

2 cans of diced tomatoes with sweet onions  (do NOT skip the sweet onions part)
Olive oil
salt & pepper 
lemon juice 

Get some chips and eat it.  Don't let people see you lick the bowl.  #justsayin