Cajun Shrimp with Peas and Rice

image

INGREDIENTS:

– about 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and uncooked

– 1/2 -1cup long white rice

– water, for boiling rice

– 6-8 oz. peas

– olive oil and butter

– about 2-3 tbsp. chopped garlic

Directions:

1) Bring a pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add rice and cook about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 2) In a saucepan, heat butter and oil. Chop the garlic, then add it and the shrimp to the pan and saute. Add peas and cajun. 3) Once the rice is finished cooking, add it to the pan and continue stirring and sauteing for approximately 3 more minutes. When your done, cool slightly and serve. I usually like to add a little more cajun to mine because I like a little more spice.If you do add extra, I recommend about 1/2 – 1 teaspoon extra, or just a couple shakings of seasoning. Enjoy your meal!

Orange Rosemary Chicken with Potatoes

IMG_2873 (2)

INGREDIENTS:

– 1 orange, cut into thin slices (seeded)

– 2  1/2 tbsp. fresh rosemary

– 4 – 6 boneless chicken breasts

– salt and pepper

– smoked paprika

– 3 garlic cloves, minced

– 3 – 4  brown potatoes, cut into small wedges (skin on)

– olive oil

PAM baking spray

DIRECTIONS:

(1) Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees fahrenheit. Pour a small amount of olive oil onto a skillet at medium heat. Add minced garlic to pan. Stir constantly, without letting garlic burn. When the garlic turns golden brown, remove heat and set aside.       (2) Cut the potatoes into small sized wedges, skin on. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside. (3) Season chicken with salt, pepper, and paprika. Re-heat skillet of oil and garlic (medium-high heat). Place chicken onto re-heated skillet to brown. Add in potatoes, sliced orange pieces, and rosemary. (4) Spray an oven-safe pan with baking spray. Transfer chicken and potatoes mixture to sprayed pan, and cook for 35 – 40 minutes in the preheated oven, until potatoes and chicken are thoroughly cooked. Plate and serve immediately, or refridgerate. Enjoy!

Won Tons with White Rice and Asparagus

image

INGREDIENTS:

– 1 package of won ton wrappers

– 1 1/2 cup of high sodium kikkoman soy sauce

– 1 packet of ground pork

– 2/3 bundles of green onions

– two cans water chestnuts

– garlic salt, pepper, and salt to taste for asparagus

– 1 bundle asparagus

– 1 bag of white rice (I ended up using brown rice, but either works, I prefer brown rice more)

– water, needed for rice and won tons

– 2  1/2 quarts vegetable oil, for deep frying

DIRECTIONS:

1) On a cutting board,  cut green onions into really small pieces and put into a mixing bowl. Now, open the cans of water chestnuts and cut into tiny pieces as well. Put into mixing bowl. 2) With the ground pork, open the package and put all of it into the mixing bowl, as well as the cups of soy sauce. Hand mix until the chestnuts and onions are blended into the meat. I know it’s messy, so when you’re done, remember to wash your hands afterwards for the future steps. 3) In a pot, pour in oil and set over stove on medium/high heat. Cover with a splatter sheet or lid. Be  very careful with the oil splattering. 4) In a small cup or bowl, pour in about 1 cup of cold water. Open up your won ton wrappers, and set on any surface. With the water, use a brush to wet only the outside part of the won ton wrapper, just like you would make a square border on a paper. DO NOT cover the whole wrapper with water, or else when you wrap everything it will not stick together. 5) After brushing the outwards part of the won ton wrappers with water, take the bowl of meat and spoon out small bits of the mixture onto the center of each wrapper. Carefully fold in the sides of each wrapper to the top and gently squeeze so it wraps properly.          6) In the pot of oil, using a slotted spoon drop each won ton in the pot 2 at a time. Let them fry for about 2-3 minutes, or until the wrapper is golden and crisp, and the meat is fully cooked. Repeat until you have the desired amount of won tons. When they are done, put onto/into a plate or bowl. 7) Meanwhile, in another pot start boiling the rice. (To do this, just fill a pot with water and set to boil, and when the water comes to a full boil, pour in rice and cover, letting it simmer for 16-18 minutes, giving an occasional stir.) Remember to keep checking the won tons when needed. 8) Yet in another pot, boil the asparagus for about 5-7 minutes, or until soft and tender. Add in salt and pepper occasionally, if desired. 9) Once everything is done (the won tons, the asparagus, and the rice), plate how you wish. If desired, add garlic salt to the asparagus, or soy sauce to the rice. Cool slightly, and serve. Enjoy!

Seared Salmon with a Fantastic Garlic Bread Side and Salad

INGREDIENTS:                yield: 4

– 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

– 4 boneless salmon fillets

– zest and juice of 1 lemon

– 1 tablespoon snipped chives

– 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

– salt and pepper, to taste

GARLIC BREAD:

– Italian bread, cut into 1/2 inch pieces

– 1 tablespoon unsalted butter for each piece of bread you make

– garlic salt

– finely chopped parsley or basil, either works

DIRECTIONS:

1) Pre heat oven to 400 degrees farenheit. 2) Cut 4 12-inch squares of aluminium foil and brush with the melted butter. 3) Place a piece of salmon onto each square and spoon the lemon rind and juice over the fish. Sprinkle filet with the salt, pepper, chives, and parsley. Place filets onto pieces of aluminium foil. 4) Carefully wrap the fish with the square of foil, then place on a baking sheet of your choice. I personally think its better to use a cookie sheet with sides so the filets don’t slip, or use an oven proof baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes in the pre – heated oven. 5) When done, take out and cool slightly. Plate as you wish, but leave room for the garlic bread.

DIRECTIONS FOR GARLIC BREAD:

1) Pre-heat oven to 350′ farenheit. On your sliced Italian bread, spread out the butter. Do it very gentle or you might break the piece of bread. 2) Sprinkle on the garlic salt. Now add the herbs until the bread is slightly covered with the herbs. Carefully, put aluminium foil on a pan and spray it with non-stick Place the bread on the pan, and put it in the pre-heated oven for about 10-14 minutes, or until crispy. Plate with the salmon, ans serve. Enjoy!!

Mini Pumpkins

IMG_2488

INGREDIENTS:

– 4 mini pumpkins

– 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted( a tablespoon for each pumpkin)

– 1 teaspoon cinnamon per pumpkin

– 1 teaspoon brown sugar per pumpkin

– vanilla ice cream for sides

DIRECTIONS:

1) Pre heat oven to 375′. Cut open tops of pumpkins, and clean out guts and seeds. If you’d like, you can save the seeds to cook. Now, melt 1 tablespoon at a time of butter, and pour gently and carefully into pumpkin. Now add in 1 tablespoon of cinnamon and brown sugar into each pumpkin. Mix in the pumpkin until brown and creamy. Replace lid back on.2) Put onto a baking sheet, and cook for 40-50 minutes, preferably 45 minutes. 3) When done baking, plate with vanilla ice cream on the in or outside (optional). Serve warm, and enjoy your meal!

NOTE: Without the ice cream, this can actually be a side to  a dinner meal or an appetizer. You can have it set the way you choose, though. I had mine for dessert because I couldn’t resist the savory flavor to vanilla ice cream; check out my home made recipe for vanilla ice cream for a super sweet treat! Enjoy your meal!

The Best Beef Wellington Dinner

IMG_2091

INGREDIENTS:           yield: 4   note: read below for gourmet mashed potato directions

– 4 beef filet’s, thawed

– 2 large portobella mushrooms, chopped

– dijon mustard, for brushing meat

– 2 egg yolks, beaten with a tbsp. of water, for eggwash

– puff pastry sheets (if frozen, thawed)

– 8 slices of porsciutto

-olive oil

– salt and pepper, to taste

MASHED POTATO SIDE:

– 3-4 sliced potatoes, cut in good sized chunks

– salt and pepper, to taste

– 4 pinches thyme

– 4 basil leaves, chopped (optional: for garnish)

– milk, for the mashed potatoes.

 DIRECTIONS:

1) Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees farenheit.  2) Take off the stems on the mushrooms. Break the mushrooms into small pieces, so that you are able to cut them with the food chopper. Once both mushrooms are fairly chopped, put them in a food processer. Now puree it.  Leave small chunks if you would like more mushroom taste. Heat a sauce pan on high. Put your mushroom puree into the pan, and constantly stir, until any mushroom liquid is evaporated. Once completely evaporated, set aside. 3) Now, get another sauce pan, and pour a little olive oil in it. Medium heat is a good temperature to use. Take your beef, and pan seer it until each side is browned. Do not cook it completely! The rest will cook perfectly in the oven. Let it cool, and set aside for now.        4)Now, take 2 pieces of porsciutto. Overlap them on top of each other. Its time for your mushroom mixture now. Using a basting brush, dip the mushroom puree onto the baster and brush the mushroom mix onto the porsciutto. Do this for each filet. Clean your baster with just water, because you need it right now. Apply some dijon mustard to your baster. Grab your meat, and baste the mustard on all sides of the filets’. Once done basting the beef, place the meat into the middle of the porsciutto. Wrap the porsciutto around the beef. 5) Now, its time for the puff pastry. It should be well thawed. Get a rolling pin, and spread the pastry dough out on a lightly floured surface. When you finish this step, place the meat in the center of the dough and gently wrap the puff pastry around the meat. Repeat for the other filets. 6) Crack 2 eggs, and only keep the yolk. Place the yolks in a bowl. Add a tbsp. of fresh cold water in with the eggs and beat throughly. Egg wash the Wellingtons’. 7) Get an oven-safe pan, and cover with aluminum foil. Place the Wellingtons’ on the pan and cook for 35-37 minutes at 400 degrees. Let it cook. While it is cooking,though, you need to make the mashed potatoes! Follow the directions below on how to make this gourmet side to your Beef Wellington.

MASHED POTATO DIRECTIONS:

1) Fill a pot with water, and place over to stove on medium or high heat. Let it boil. 2) While the water begins to boil, start peeling you potatoes. When all the potatoes are peeled, slice over a cutting board into good sized chunks. If the water is boiling, carefully insert the cut potatoes. Your potatoes are done boiling when you are able to easily cut straight through them without any problems. 3) Drain the water from the pot very carefully. 4) Get a medium sized mixing bowl. With you potatoes well drained, put them in the bowl. Now start to mash them using a potato masher or a large fork or spoon. Now this is a kind of guess and tell part. Add in a little milk then mash again. If it is still very firm and hard to mash add more milk and repeat until its the desired consistency, or until creamy and smooth. Add salt and pepper. Then put in the thyme. 5) The Beef Wellingtons should be done now. Plate the Wellington and mashed potato. Garnish the potatoes with chopped fresh basil and serve. Enjoy!