Archives for April 2011

Shrimp Tacos and Slaw for Sunday!!!












Happy Sunday y’all,
Lately I’ve been looking to add some variety to my nightly meals. Just my luck, a couple of weekends ago I found myself having dinner with my parents at one of my favorite Tex-Mex restaurants, Pappasitos Cantina. I have been eating at this Texas legacy almost my entire life and I always order the Grilled Chicken Taco Salad, which arrives in a huge fried tortilla shell, layered with fresh romaine lettuce, sliced tomatoes, red onion, and carrot. The salad is layered with tender slices of grilled chicken breast and then drizzled with homemade barbecue sauce and homemade poblano honey-mustard dressing…then I usually apply a generous helping of chile con queso because you can never miss out on that good stuff. While that dish is my all-time fave, my last trip to Pappasito’s I was taken aback by the dish that my mother ordered, a simple and classic Tex-Mex dish: shrimp tacos. Of course after one bite, I had to coerce myself to create my own spin on the dish. Instead of the regular cabbage coleslaw we are all used to eating, I used shredded carrot and zucchini to create the base for the slaw. The slaw then gets tossed with my homemade dressing that is zesty, yet subtly sweet. Yowza! I grilled the shrimp in my favorite tequila lime rub from Whole Foods (the seafood department uses this rub religiously on just about any cut of fish in their case…not to mention that my seafood lady insisted that I use it to grill the shrimp). Once again, Whole Foods has yet to disappoint me. I layer everything together in fresh corn tortillas and top with creamy crumbled goat cheese. Might I just say that this is by far one of the best dishes that I have ever made, the flavors compliment each other so well, and for a few brownie points…this dish is quick and easy to prepare so you can have dinner on the table in no time!

Soft Shrimp Tacos with Zucchini-Carrot Slaw

Ingredients:

For the Zucchini-Carrot Slaw:
2 large zucchini squash, roughly grated on a box grater (should yield about 1 1/2-2 c.)
2 large carrots, roughly grated on a box grater (should yield 1- 1/2 c.)
6 oz. container of Greek yogurt
2 Tbs. mayonnaise (I used Miracle Whip…gives the slaw a good tanginess)
1 Tbs. sugar
juice of 1 lime
bunch of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

For the Shrimp Tacos:
1/2 lb. fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 18 medium shrimp)
1 Tbs. tequila lime dry rub seasoning (you can also use any type of your favorite spicy dry rub or seafood seasoning)
1 tsp. olive oil
juice of 1 lime
4 corn tortillas
fresh goat cheese with honey, crumbled

Directions:

For the Zucchini-Carrot Slaw:
1. Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and combine using a spatula until fully incorporated.
2. Place the slaw in the refrigerator and allow to chill for at least one hour.

Directions:

For the Shrimp Tacos:
1. Place the shrimp in a small bowl and toss with the olive oil, tequila lime seasoning, and lime juice until evenly covered with the marinade.
2. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat and drizzle with olive oil.
3. Place the shrimp in the skillet and cook the shrimp evenly on both sides, about five minutes each (the shrimp should be slightly pink and lightly browned on both sides when cooked through).
4. Remove the shrimp and set aside to cool.
5. Place the corn tortillas on a plate and cover with a generous helping of the slaw (about 1/4-1/2 c.).
6. Place around 4-5 pieces of shrimp over the slaw in each tortilla.
7. To finish, crumble the goat cheese over each taco (you can also melt the goat cheese for a couple of seconds and spread over each tortilla before the layering process).

I serve my tacos with a side of buttered corn, pinto beans, and my favorite green avocado salsa from Whole Foods. Then I garnish with a bit of freshly chopped cilantro. This dish is absolutely out of this world!

MANGIA!!!

Presto Panini!















Happy Saturday,

It has been a long week but luckily I have had the chance to create some awesome recipes to share with you all. My latest obsession is experimenting with lunch ideas, in particular, lunch sandwiches. I can recall the days where my mom would pack my school lunches, which usually consisted of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a fruit roll-up, and a Little Debbie pumpkin cake (you know, the ones that look like jack o’ lanterns…those are still my fave). What I wouldn’t give for one of those packed home lunches right about now! Today I still pack my lunch for work. I even carry my lunch in an awesome green lunch tote that I bought at Whole Foods (it’s definitely not my trusty old brown bag, or my Barbie lunch box, but it gets the job done nonetheless). Since my elementary days, I have definitely taken my lunch to a “whole notha’ level,” so to speak. Here is my latest upscale-ish type of sandwich, or for my Italian entourage, a panini. This panini uses simple ingredients and takes about ten minutes to make. I would suggest packing this for your next lunch. On the plus side, this panini will make you feel as though you are sitting outside a small Italian cafe in Venice…at least that is what I try to imagine instead of my usual back ground music at work, which often consists of noisy blenders and customers who always have a complaint.

Turkey Panini with Cheesy Roasted Red Pepper Spread
Ingredients:


For the Cheesy Roasted Red Pepper Spread:
juice 1 lemon
3.5 oz package of sun dried tomatoes
1 Tbs. olive oil
12 oz. can of roasted red bell peppers in water, drained
15 oz. ricotta cheese
1/4 c. Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp. salt
pepper, to taste
For the Turkey Panini:
two slices of whole wheat bread
sliced deli turkey breast (about 6 slices)
fresh arugula and spinach

Directions:

For the Cheesy Roasted Red Pepper Spread:
1. Place all ingredients in a food processor or a blender and process until fully combined into a smooth pureed spread.
For the Turkey Panini:
1. Heat a panini pan over medium heat.
2. Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray.
3. Spread two slices of whole wheat bread with the cheesy roasted red pepper spread (I would suggest spreading each slice with a generous helping).
4. Layer each slice of bread with three slices of turkey breast.
5. Top one slice of the bread with fresh arugula and spinach.
6. Sandwich the two slices of bread together and place the panini into the pan.
7. Place the panini press down over the top of the panini, grilling each side of the panini for about 5 minutes, or until each side is golden brown and has beautiful grill marks.
8. Serve the panini hot off the pan, I enjoy mine with a small glass of cold almond milk…soooo good!

MANGIA!!!