Pasta with Shrimp, Lime & Saffron


Whenever I make a dish with fish or shellfish in it I just feel like I am eating better.  Obviously that is not always the case, but generally I do feel it holds some truth.  Fish and shellfish are both very low calorie and fat, and generally are prepared in ways that keep things light and fresh.  Despite the large amount of olive oil in this dish (but keeping in mind olive oil IS good for you lol) I do feel like this is a pretty light, yet satisfying dish.  The nice fresh, slightly sweet taste of the shrimp pairs perfectly with the bright tangy and spicy sauce.

Let’s talk about saffron for a minute.  It is the most expensive spice on the market and most people have probably never tried it.  It is actually the stigma of a certain type of crocus.  It lends a sort of sweetness to a dish, and a little goes a LONG way.  When you buy it you often get a tiny amount and you really only need a few threads for a dish.  If you just can’t justify spending so much on a spice, I think this dish would still be a winner without it, but if you’re curious definitely give a shot!  It will probably last you a long time because not many dishes call for it.  A tip I found for dispersing the flavor more evenly in your dish is to soak the threads for about 5 minutes in a teaspoon of warm water or white wine to then be used in your dish.

The recipe I followed actually had a slightly different name (Pasta with Scampi, Lime & Saffron), but I don’t think it’s correct.  When I think of scampi I think of shrimp cooked in a garlic butter sauce, and there is no butter in this dish.  There is however a good deal of garlic.  Don’t shy away from it, it’s not nearly as intense as it seems lol.  I used a shallot as my onion for a more mild onion flavor.  The recipe was also originally written for a full lb box of pasta, but I used a bit less (11oz).  I didn’t end up needing any pasta water to thin my sauce out, but don’t forget to hang on to it just in case.  The recipe I followed called for Nolly Pratt, but I have no idea what that is (however they referenced white wine in the article so that’s what I went with), instead I used a chardonnay.  And, as always, if you can get your hands on some nice fresh shrimp that would definitely be best.  However frozen is fine too.  I wanted to leave the tails on for a prettier picture, but the part of me that can’t stand food that is a hassle to eat won in this case.

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Pasta with Shrimp, Lime, & Saffron

Ingredients :

  • 12 oz. linguine
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 18 medium sized shrimp (about a lb)
  • 1 onion finely chopped (or shallot)
  • 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 100 ml white wine
  • few strands of saffron (remember a little goes a long way)
  • zest of 2 limes
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp. chili flakes
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped parsley
  • 1/4 sliced green onions
  • black and white sesame seeds for garnish
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions :

  1. Clean, devein, and prepare shrimp how you like them.  Salt and pepper them.
  2. Heat a skillet over medium to medium-high heat with a bit of your oil and cook shrimp on each side for about a minute and set aside.  They should be mostly cooked through because they won’t cook much longer after this, but remember shrimp are easy to over-cook.
  3. Add the rest of your oil to the skillet and saute onions for a few minutes until softened.  Add garlic, chili flakes and saffron (on medium so your garlic doesn’t burn) and cook until fragrant.
  4. Add white wine, and scrape any bits off the bottom of your pan.  Bump it back up to medium-high and let it simmer for a couple minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions and reserve some of the starchy pasta water to thin your sauce as needed.
  6. Add to your pan the chopped parsley, lime zest, lime juice, green onions, and drained pasta.  Add a little of the pasta water at this time (only if necessary) as well.
  7. Add your shrimp, toss to coat, and heat through… make sure your shrimp are now fully cooked through.
  8. Garnish with a sprinkling of black and white sesame seeds and a wedge of lime.

Recipe from My Kitchen Treasures

 

 

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Paprika Chicken Stroganoff


This dish has almost all the elements that to me make a perfect meal…. pasta, mushrooms, garlic, meat, bold flavor, creamy sauce, and some fresh parsley!  The only thing it IS missing to be a perfect combo of my favorite things is some cheese, but this isn’t really a recipe that needs it, so I guess I will give it a pass on that lol.  This is not only a tasty dish, but is also very visually appealing.  The red/orange color of the sauce, the white of the pasta, and the bright green of the parsley make it look like a piece of art!

As if those elements alone weren’t enough to make me or anyone else want to try this, I was also intrigued by the use of Greek yogurt in the dish.  When I think of stroganoff I think of cream of mushroom soup, or some other variety.  If the recipe is more health conscious or just more involved it at least calls for cream or butter or something to make it so good and creamy, but not quite so healthy.  With this dish there really was no need.  The sauce was thick and creamy from the yogurt and the flour alone.  This for me at least cuts back on the guilt of either using cream and butter or “cream of soup” (which I am trying to phase out in our house).

I didn’t make any changes to the recipe, which for me is rare lol.  So with that, I will just get on with it and share the recipe.

Paprika Chicken Stroganoff

Ingredients :

  • 1 1/4 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 T. paprika
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 T. all-purpose flour
  • 1 T. olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium  yellow onion, diced
  • 8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 T. tomato paste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 T. all-purpose flour whisked with 1 T. water
  • 1o oz. dry egg noodles
  • fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish

Directions :

  1. In a medium bowl, toss the cubed chicken with the paprika, salt and pepper. Sprinkle the flour on top of the chicken and toss to coat.
  2. Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until rippling and hot. Add the chicken and cook 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink (no need to cook through); remove the chicken onto a plate and set aside.
  3. Add the last teaspoon of oil to the pan and allow to get hot, about 1 minute; stir in the onions and mushrooms. Saute the mixture, stirring occasionally and scraping up the browned bits from the chicken, until the onion is translucent and the onions and mushrooms are browned, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, saute 30 seconds or until fragrant.
  4. Meanwhile, heat 2 quarts of water in a large pot. Bring water to a boil and add noodles. Cook 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain and set aside.
  5. Pour in about 1/4 cup of the chicken broth and deglaze the pan by scraping up any bits from the bottom. Stir in the tomato paste, whisking to combine. Add the rest of the chicken broth and the bay leaf, whisking well. Add the chicken back into the skillet and simmer the mixture over medium-low to medium heat, until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce thickens slightly, about 5-6 minutes. Stir in the yogurt and cook for about 2-3 minutes longer.
  6. Add the flour and water slurry to the simmering mixture in the skillet, whisking quickly to combine. Let the mixture simmer for 2-3 minutes until thickened. Serve over hot noodles and garnish with fresh parsley.

Recipe from Prevention RD

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Pumpkin Thai Chicken Pizza


Sounds odd right?  Well I thought so at least, but I am only just starting to come around to using pumpkin in anything other than dessert.  Still, I was intrigued, and put it on my menu as soon as I saw it.  I love Thai pizzas, so I figured why not?  If it turned out I would have an interesting post for my blog, and if not, at least it would be simple to make and I won’t have wasted too much of my time.

Turns out it not only doesn’t taste like pumpkin… something I was rather concerned about given the amount of pumpkin vs the amount of other ingredients… but it tastes great too!  My husband said that he felt it wasn’t too different from a more traditional peanut sauce which is a good thing because that’s definitely his favorite part of Thai pizza, but also the highest portion of fat/calories!  My only critic on this would be that I felt it had room for more flavor.  Perhaps some red peppers!

In regards to the ingredients… I had way more sauce than I needed for one pizza.  I could have probably gotten two out of the amount I had.  The only problem was I didn’t have enough chicken for two pizzas.  I also don’t feel like the amount of cheese listed is enough for a pizza…. I probably used 3 times that to be honest, and I encourage you to use however much you like.  With such a simple pizza I like there to be a nice layer of cheese.  I used a store-bought crust, it was a large square one, that bakes in 8 minutes according to the package, so I ended up basing my time off that, and then at the end I broiled it for just a minute to get some color on the top too.  My last change was to use chicken breast I seasoned with some salt and pepper and cooked in a skillet.

I would definitely make this again, and perhaps try it with the addition of the peppers I mentioned.  It came together easily, and was a nice change from the more traditional pizzas.

 

Pumpkin Thai Chicken Pizza

Ingredients :

  • pizza dough, prepared (I used a prepared crust)
  • 1 (15oz) can pure pumpkin
  • 1 T. chili garlic sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Thai red curry paste
  • 1 chicken breast from a rotisserie chicken, shredded (see note above)
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella (see note above, I used a lot more)
  • 2 thin slices of onion, chopped
  • handful fresh cilantro, chopped

Directions :

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.  In a large bowl mix together the pumpkin, chili garlic sauce, salt and pepper.
  2. In another smaller bowl mix together the cut chicken, curry paste and lime juice.  Mix together until the chicken is evenly coated with the red curry paste.
  3. Flour your surface and roll out the prepared pizza dough.  Sprinkle the pizza stone or cookie sheet with corn meal and place the dough on the sheet/stone.  Evenly spread the pumpkin mixture on the dough leaving about an inch bare for the crust.  Sprinkle the chicken on top of the pumpkin mixture and evenly place the onion slices on the chicken.
  4.  Finally sprinkle with cheese and bake for 16-18 minutes until cheese has melted and crust is a light golden brown.
  5. While it’s baking chop or tear the cilantro.  After you take the pizza out and it’s cooled sprinkle the cilantro over it and serve.  Enjoy!

Recipe from Seaweed & Sassafras

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Easy Lemon Chicken


Any recipe with the word Easy in the title draws my attention.  I like to cook and try new things, and don’t mind an involved recipe now and again.  But there are nights when I barely want to cook, let alone go through a bunch of complicated steps.  The next thing that caught my eye about this particular recipe was the use of lemon curd.  I have had lemon curd on desserts in the past and really enjoyed it, but I had never thought about using it in a dinner type meal and thought it was really ingenious.

This recipe definitely came through on the easy part!  I also enjoyed the lemony flavor of the curd, though it wasn’t quite as lemony as I thought it would be.  I am not complaining though because I have made lemon dishes in the past and though they taste great it can be a bit complex at times and I loved that all the lemon flavor in this recipe came from a jar.  It’s perfect for a weeknight meal when you are pressed for time.

Easy Lemon Chicken

Serves : 4-5

Ingredients :

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 1 jar of lemon curd
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, chopped
  • 1 tsp. garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup (approx) flour
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • zest of one lemon
  • pinch of salt and pepper

Directions :

  1. Cut the chicken into 1 inch pieces and coat each piece with flour.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large pan or wok and stir fry the chicken until it’s browned.  Transfer the chicken to a plate.
  3. Add the second tablespoon of olive oil to the pan along with the ginger, garlic and diced white section from the green onion.  Stir fry until the onion is softened.  Turn the heat down to about medium and add the chicken broth slowly and stir constantly.  Gradually add the lemon curd one spoon at a time, stirring frequently until it’s combined and the liquid is now slightly thick, but smooth.
  4. Return the chicken to the pan along with a pinch of salt and pepper, lemon zest and the greens from the onion.  Turn the heat down to low and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Recipe from Create-Celebrate-Explore

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Published in: on July 9, 2013 at 6:52 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Healthy Sweet & Sour Fish


I don’t know about you, but when I am browsing for new recipes and I see the word HEALTHY in the title I automatically pay attention.  Of course, sometimes upon further investigation of the recipe I decide it’s either just not for me, or not nearly as healthy as it claims, but lucky for me I decided to give this one a try.  I honestly don’t even care if it’s healthy or not because it was just so good!

It has all the elements of a nice Hawaiian type sweet and sour with the vinegar, peppers, pineapple, etc, but then you get the kick from the chili sauce and this just takes on a whole new level of goodness.  I really liked the use of fish in this rather than something like chicken, which I would typically do.  It was so soft and flaky and the flavor was perfect.  You just have to be a little more careful in the cooking process so as not to break up the fish too much.  Besides being full of flavor, this dish has a lot of color and would be sure to impress at your next dinner party.

This dish does take a little longer to prepare, but it’s worth the extra effort, and having everything prepped and ready to go from the start really makes things go smoothly.  The recipe says to serve over rice, but you’ll probably notice I just mixed it all together in the picture.  I was just saving myself the hassle and mess of trying to do it later on my plate lol.

Healthy Sweet & Sour Fish

Serves : 8          Time to make : 40 minutes

Ingredients :

  • 2 lbs. tilapia
  • 2 T. olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 yellow onions
  • 2 each,  red/yellow/green bell peppers
  • 2-3 cups fresh pineapple
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup sweet chili garlic sauce, or more to taste
  • 2 T. + 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • cooked brown rice
  • sesame seeds

Directions :

  1. Fish: Cut the fish into bite-sized pieces and mince 1 onion. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and saute for 1 minute. Add the fish and sprinkle with cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper to taste. Cook, flipping occasionally and draining any excess liquid, for 5-10 minutes or until the pieces are golden brown on the outside and white all the way through. Set aside.  (Be careful with the fish to avoid breaking it up too much)
  2. Vegetables: Chop the bell peppers and 1 onion into bite-sized pieces. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet and saute the peppers and onions for 5-10 minutes, until golden brown on the outside and tender-crisp. Chop the pineapple into bite-sized pieces and add to the pan, cooking for another few minutes. Set aside.
  3. Sauce: Combine the vinegar, ketchup, sugar, salt, pineapple juice, orange juice, and sweet chili garlic sauce in a large skillet over medium low heat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Whisk the cornstarch into a few tablespoons of water until smooth. Add to the sauce in the skillet and bring to a low boil. Cook for a few more minutes until the sauce is thickened.
  4. Combine the fish, vegetables, and sauce (you might not want all of it – just eyeball whatever looks good) in a large pan or bowl. Serve over brown rice and sprinkle with sesame seeds. I liked mine with extra sweet chili garlic sauce.

Recipe from pinch of yum

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