Shrimp Florentine with Zoodles

May 17th, 2016

Shrimp Florentine 1

David has been in the kitchen.  I bought the Spiralizer, but he has been the one to use it most often.  Shrimp dishes are his specialty.  We love shrimp scampi but sometimes all of that butter and pasta is way too much.  This rendition of shrimp with sauteed vegetables, including zoodles, is just the ticket.  It is flavorful and very satisfying.

There is a whole lot going on right now in our lives.  Our house in Florida sold.  We are there right now clearing out our belongings in anticipation of an estate sale at the end of the week. It is hard to let go of cherished household items, but I am doing very well.  The kitchen has been the hardest part.  I have absolutely no room in my Lake Lure Kitchen for more stuff!  So I have been strongly resisting keeping much.  I have made an exception for my beloved paella pan and a few platters, but that is it.  I wish all of you could be there, because I know I would find good homes for my extra kitchen accoutrements.

LL Sleeping porch 1

With all that is going on right now, I wish I were home in Lake Lure on our sleeping porch with a good book and no responsibilities.

LL Balconey Herbs 1

We managed to get the herb planters going before we left for Florida.  It is so nice to have our herbs high above the ground so that our hungry deer do not bother them.  We have a great neighbor watering everything while we are gone.

LL Balconey Herbs 2

Two varieties of parsley and sage decorate this planter.

Shrimp Florentine 2

We enjoyed this Shrimp Florentine dish so much.  The fresh spinach and zucchini noodles made this both delicious and healthy.  I need to let David plan meals more often.  He tends to cook healthier meals than I do.  I would be happy with just macaroni and cheese.

SHRIMP FLORENTINE WITH ZOODLES

1 Tablespoon butter
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Zucchini, cut into noodle-shaped strands
1/2 large yellow onion, minced
1/2 red bell pepper, julienned
1 Tablespoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon Italian herbs

2 Tablespoons butter
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 6-ounce bag baby spinach
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Heat 1 tablespoon butter and olive oil together in a large skillet over medium heat; cook and stir zucchini noodles (zoodles), onion, red bell pepper, chopped garlic, Italian herbs and 1/2 teaspoon salt until zoodles are tender and onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.  Transfer zoodle mixture to a bowl.

Heat 2 tablespoons butter in the same skillet; cook and stir shrimp and minced garlic until shrimp are just pink, 3 to 4 minutes.  Remove shrimp to a bowl and deglaze the pan with the white wine and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes to reduce the liquid by half.  Add spinach, lemon juice, red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper; cook and stir until spinach begins to wilt, 3 to 3 minutes.  Add zoodle mixture and the shrimp and cook and stir until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes.  Serve.

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Pappardelle with Salmon and Leeks

February 18th, 2015

Pappardelle with Salmon and Leeks 1

We returned to Florida from North Carolina just before winter storm Octavia descended upon the state. Because the Southern states were being hit so hard with snow, ice and sleet, there was a danger that power outages would occur.  It was a comfort to see over 30 power company trucks with buckets traveling in convoy from Florida up I 95 to the affected states.  I’m sure there were more Florida utility trucks traveling north up I 75 as well.  We are definitely the United States of America.  It was also a comfort to me to watch the outside temperature gauge in our car rise from 16 degrees in NC to 75 degrees in Florida.

This bowl of pasta and shrimp was also a comfort to me the day after we got home.  I was in the mood for something citrusy and healthy but with a little heft to it.  After all, I was still trying to thaw out.

Pappardelle with Salmon and Leeks 2V

The dish is elegant and easy.  Rosy salmon, pale green leaks and fresh herbs are tossed with broad pappardelle pasta.  I adapted the recipe from Cooking Light Magazine.  I didn’t have all of the fresh herbs that they called for, but used what I had; which was parsley, basil and thyme.  It is nice to be able to keep small pots of herbs just outside my door.  The lemons came from our small tree.

Pappardelle with Salmon and Leeks 3

This had the taste of spring to me.  For all of you who are suffering through this brutal winter, I wish you an early spring.  In the meantime, this recipe might help a little.  Enjoy.

PAPPARDELLE WITH SALMON AND LEEKS

3/4 pound uncooked pappardelle pasta
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 large leeks (1 pound), trimmed and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons minced fresh savory or 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme plus 1 teaspoon minced fresh mint
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson)
1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon grated fresh lemon rind
1 (1-pound) fresh or frozen sustainable salmon fillet
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons unsalted butter

Preparation

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid; keep pasta and cooking liquid warm.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add leeks, savory, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; cook 15 minutes or until leeks are translucent, stirring occasionally. Increase heat to medium-high. Add wine; cook 1 minute. Add stock; bring to a simmer. Remove from heat; stir in pasta, reserved cooking liquid, parsley, and lemon rind.

3. Sprinkle salmon fillet with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and butter; swirl until butter melts. Add salmon fillet, and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Flake the salmon into large chunks. Arrange 1 cup of the pasta mixture on each of 6 plates, and top evenly with flaked salmon. Serve immediately.

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Venetian Fish Soup

December 3rd, 2014

Venetian Fish Soup 1

I don’t know about you, but after the Thanksgiving holidays I crave food that is totally different from that table of white carbs and sweet desserts.  Also, for health reasons, David is trying to eat better.  So he has been on a seafood soup kick lately.  He spends his mornings at the gym and then comes home and throws something together like this Venetian fish soup.  Similar to bouillabaisse or cioppino, this fragrant fish soup is vibrant and alive with flavor.

Venetian Fish Soup 2V

Shrimp and fish fillets are the protein in this soup.  Combined with vegetables, clam juice, crushed tomatoes and white wine, you have a relatively light bowl of goodness.  If you wanted to add some carbs to the mix you could add a piece of garlic infused toasted baguette to the bowl before you add the soup.  But for lunch we liked it just the way that it was.

Venetian Fish Soup 3

The recipe came from Food and Wine Magazine.  David adapted it slightly.  But I am showing it here as it was written.  I am fortunate to have him in the kitchen doing his healthy cooking.  Maybe it will offset all of the cookies I am getting ready to make.

VENETIAN FISH SOUP

1/2 pound large shrimp, shells removed and reserved
2 cups water
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 carrots, chopped
2 onions, chopped
1 fennel bulb, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 1/2 cups bottled clam juice
2 1/2 cups canned crushed tomatoes in puree (from a 28-ounce can)
1/4 teaspoon dried red-pepper flakes
5 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt or more, depending on the saltiness of the clam juice
2 bay leaves
2 pounds moderately firm white fish fillets such as cod, halibut, ocean perch, orange roughy, or pollack (cut in pieces)
Freshly ground black pepper

Put the shrimp shells and the water in a small pot; bring the water to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.  Strain the shrimp stock into a bowl.  Discard the shells.

In a large pot, heat the oil over moderate heat.  Add the carrots, onions, fennel, celery and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, about 5 minutes.  Add the wine; cook until it almost evaporates, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the shrimp stock, clam juice, tomatoes, red-pepper flakes, 4 tablespoons of the parsley, the thyme, salt and bay leaves.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 25 minutes.  Taste for salt and, if needed, add more,  Remove the bay leaves.

Add the fish, shrimp, the remaining tablespoon parsley and the pepper to the pot and bring to a simmer.  Simmer until the fish and shrimp are just done, about 2 minutes.

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Recipe for a Grand Dinner Party

July 29th, 2013

My friend Penny of The Comforts of Home and From Harvest to Table is a multi-talented lady.  Not only has she turned her new home into a beautiful place to live by painting, sewing, digging in the dirt and creative decorating, but she is also an accomplished and creative cook.  This past weekend David and I had the pleasure of dining with Penny and her hubby.  The menu was posted in her kitchen.

We were seated in her cozy kitchen nook and enjoyed the crostini and brushetta while she stirred the risotto and we all had a chance to chat. It is fun to watch the hostess put the finishing touches on a meal.  It is smart though to have a place for your guests to sit well out of the way of the action.  Sometimes it is easy to get distracted when people are leaning over your shoulder and messing in your space.  Penny has the perfect set up.

Unfortunately, I did not get a picture of the appetizers.  But they were just perfect with a glass of crisp white wine.

I cannot say enough about the Creamy Corn Risotto with grilled shrimp and truffle oil.  This is a perfect summer dish.  All of the flavors of fresh corn are extracted from the ears.  The cobs are used to make a stock and the corn kernels are used in both a puree and a saute.  The risotto is creamy and full of the flavor of corn.  The shrimp with truffle oil is just simply the perfect embellishment to the dish.  I can see why Penny said “there were a lot of mmms going on from her friends” when she first made this because we were doing it too.  We all ate our dishes with a big spoon and I scraped my bowl clean.

Ah, Poached Pears in Marsala wine with English Stilton Cheese.  This was such an elegant dish and believe it our not it was made in a crock pot.  Simple elegance.  Penny and I both have The French Slow Cooker cookbook by Michele Scicolone which we love.  But she also bought the Italian Slow Cooker and this recipe came from that book.  It is a no fail easy way to poach pears and the rich sauce and bleu cheese complemented it perfectly.  I have a feeling Penny will have the recipe on her From Harvest to Table website soon so be sure to go over there to view it.  Here is her recipe for the risotto.  It might seem long but it can be done in stages and each component held in the fridge until the final cooking of the risotto.

This is a perfect dinner party menu.  I hope you give it a try.  Thanks Penny.

 

CREAMY CORN RISOTTO WITH GRILLED SHRIMP AND TRUFFLE OIL

RECIPE (serves 6)

Corn Stock

  • 6 ears corn, husked
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 2 celery stalks, halved lengthwise
  • 1 leek (white and light green part only), cut into 1-inch pieces

 

Corn Purée and Sauté

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 3 fresh thyme sprigs

 

Risotto

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup grated Sartori Stravecchio cheese (or another domestic Parmesan  cheese)

Shrimp

  • 24 peeled and de-veined shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon truffle oil
  • 2 medium summer truffles, very thinly sliced (optional)

Make the Corn Stock

Using a large chef’s knife, cut the corn kernels off the cobs and set aside.  Place the cobs in a large stockpot along with the onion, celery, and chopped  leek. Add 10 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat  and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Strain the corn stock through a fine-mesh  strainer into a bowl. Discard the solids. You should have at least 6 cups of  stock.

Make the Corn Purée

Heat the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter in a medium saucepan over  medium heat until the butter begins to foam. Add the onion and garlic and sauté  until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes. Add 1 cup of the reserved corn  kernels, season to taste with salt and pepper, and continue to cook over low  heat, stirring constantly, until the kernels begin to soften, about 5 minutes.  Add the cream, thyme, and 1 cup of the corn stock and continue to simmer over  low heat until the mixture begins to thicken, about 10 minutes. Remove the thyme  and purée the mixture in a blender until smooth.

Sauté the Corn

Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in a medium sauté pan over  medium-high heat. Add the remaining corn kernels and sauté until the corn is  tender, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Make the Risotto

Heat the olive oil in a large wide saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion  and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the rice and stir  to coat with the oil. Add the wine and reduce the heat to a simmer until most of  the wine has evaporated. Add 1 cup of the corn stock to the pan and continue to  cook, stirring constantly, until most of the stock is absorbed. Repeat the  process with the remaining 4 cups of corn stock, making sure the stock has been  fully incorporated after each addition before adding more. Once the rice is  tender yet firm to the bite, remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the corn  purée, sautéed corn, and grated cheese and season to taste with salt and  pepper.

Prepare The Shrimp

Preheat a gas grill to high.  Lightly brush the peeled and de-veined shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper.  Place on grill and cook until pink, about 2 minutes per side.

To Serve

Divide the risotto among 6 warm bowls. Arrange 4 shrimp atop each bowl of risotto. Drizzle with the truffle oil and garnish with sliced summer  truffles, if desired.

Salmon Cakes

November 29th, 2012

 

David asked me to make salmon cakes for him last week.  I had a can of salmon in the pantry.  I threw together a hasty batch of them and although they were good, they were not memorable.  He is nothing if not persistent.  He researched different recipes, finally settled on a Barefoot Contessa recipe, bought all of the ingredients and made a batch himself.

 

 

This recipe used fresh salmon, lots of fresh vegetables and Old Bay Seasoning.  It seemed like he was in the kitchen for hours.  I have learned that when he is cooking it is wise to move my pretty rug that is usually in front of the stove and make myself scarce.   Things tend to fly.

 

 

His salmon cakes were delicious.  He had almost decided that they were too much trouble until we tasted them.  Wow!  Leave it to the Barefoot Contessa to have the perfect recipe.  And he cleaned up the kitchen too.  Think I’ll keep both him and this recipe.

 

SALMON CAKES ( The Barefoot Contessa )

1/2 pound fresh salmon
Good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup small-diced red onion (1 small onion)
1 1/2 cups small-diced celery (4 stalks)
1/2 cup small-diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup small-diced yellow bell pepper
1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon capers, drained
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
3 slices stale bread, crusts removed
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the salmon on a sheet pan, skin side down.  Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until just cooked.  Remove from the oven and cover tightly with aluminum foil.  Allow to rest for 10 miutes nd refrigerate until cold.

Meanwhile, place 2 tablespoons of the butter 2 tablespoons olive oil, the onion, celery, red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, capers, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce,  crab boil seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt , and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a large saute pan over medium-low heat and cook until the vegetables are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes.  Cool to room temperature.

Break the bread slices in pieces and process the bread in a food processor fitted with a steel blade.  You should have about 1 cup of bread crumbs.  Place the read crumbs on a sheet pan and toast in the oven for 5 minutes until lightly browned, tossing occasionally.

Flake the chilled salmon inot a large bowl.  Add the bread crumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, and eggs.  Add the vegetable mixture and mix well.  Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.  Shape into 10 cakes.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat.  In batches, add the salmon cakes and fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until browned.  Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a preheated 250 degree F oven and serve hot.

 

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© Penny Klett, Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen. All rights reserved.