Spicy Shrimp Pasta

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Mr. Meat Eater and I love shrimp so I’m always on the lookout for new recipes.  I found this one on Budget Bytes ~ which is an awesome site and you should visit!  There are loads of great recipes.

I did change this recipe up a little bit.  I used 1 1/2 lbs shrimp since they were on the smallish side and we like lots of shrimp in our dishes.  I used 6 cloves of minced garlic so the dish would be nice and garlicky.   I also used several shakes of red pepper flakes and I really couldn’t taste it too much so if you like food spicy, use more. I think the next time I make this, will get diced tomatoes with garlic or some other kind of spice.

Spicy Shrimp Pasta

Spicy Shrimp Pasta

8 oz fettuccine
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
4 cloves garlic, minced ~ I used 6 cloves, minced
1/2 lb peeled and deveined shrimp ~ I used 1 1/2 lbs
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp salt
Fresh black pepper
Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish

Add the pasta to large pot of boiling water and cook according to package directions. Drain.

While the pasta is cooking, put the olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat.

Rinse the shrimp, drain, and add to the melted butter/olive oil in the skillet along with the minced garlic. Saute just until shrimp turns pink. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add the tomatoes and their juice to the skillet with the red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Stir and let simmer over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until slightly thickened.

Add the cooked fettuccine to the sauce in the skillet and toss to coat with the sauce. Add back the cooked shrimp and toss to mix again. Adjust salt if needed.

Before serving, sprinkle chopped parsley over the top.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Budget Bytes

Happy Cooking!

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Creamy Tomato Pesto Soup

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This soup is just divine!  I made it for lunch over the weekend and I thought Mr. Meat Eater was going to lick the pan when it was all gone.  Tomato is my go-to soup when I am craving soup and this recipe just kicks it up a notch.

It is super easy to make.  If you don’t have a stick blender, you can just eat it as is and it will be just as delicious.  I used San Marzano canned tomatoes because I like the way they taste the best but if you can’t find them, any crushed tomatoes will be just as good.

Creamy Tomato Soup

Creamy Tomato Pesto Soup

2 tbsps olive oil
1/2 cup diced onions
2 tbsps minced garlic
1 (28 oz) can whole peeled crushed tomatoes
1 pint heavy cream
6 tbsps basil pesto
3 tbsps grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a soup pot. Over medium heat, add the onions and garlic and saute until translucent.

Add the tomatoes with their juice. Add the cream slowly while stirring, then add the pesto and cheese. Turn heat down to low and simmer for 20 minutes.

Using a stick blender, blend until smooth. If no stick blender is available, serve as is.

Serve with crackers or garlic bread if desired.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from Paws-itively Good Chow

Happy Cooking!

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Easy Chicken Chili

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Don’t faint ~ it’s actually a NEW post!!!! I needed a long break from thinking about food ~ as much as I love to cook, I do need a break from even thinking about it once in awhile.

Quite a bit has happened since I’ve been gone from the blog. The most important being my daughter got engaged and Mr. Meat Eater was out of work and is now back at work. The wedding date is June 9, 2012, and we are very excited and I’m sure you will get sick of me talking about it in the months to come. As for Mr. Meat Eater ~ he can never fully retire or we will kill each other.

I loved this recipe ~ it’s a bit spicy but not bad and you can always make it spicier if you prefer by adding hot sauce before eating.  It’s easy to make but it needs to simmer on the stove for about an hour so keep that in mind.

Easy Chicken Chili

2 poblano chili peppers, chopped
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsps olive oil
2 (14.5 oz) cans zesty chili style dice tomatoes (I used Del Monte)
3 cups chopped cooked chicken (I used a rotisserie chicken)
1 (16 oz) can navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (12 oz) can beer or 1 1/2 cups chicken broth (I used beer)
1 envelope white chicken chili seasoning (I used McCormick brand)

Put the olive oil in a Dutch oven and heat. Saute the first 4 ingredients over medium-high heat for 8 minutes or so or until tender.

Add the diced tomatoes and the next 5 ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to low and simmer, stirring occasionally for 1 hour.

Serve with desired toppings.

Makes 4-6 servings

Happy Cooking!

Three Tomato Pasta

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What an excellent pasta recipe!  The original recipe calls for goat cheese ~ I’m still not that thrilled with goat cheese so I subbed in mozzarella but if you love goat cheese, by all means use it.  The only thing I didn’t have on hand for this recipe was the sun-dried tomatoes so this is almost a pantry recipe.  I also didn’t use the fresh parsley because I didn’t have any so I use a few shakes of dried parsley.

The recipe came from a cookbook that I bought for my DD for Christmas but I didn’t remember buying it for her last Christmas, too.  So it became MY cookbook ~ The Essential Dinner Tonight Cookbook from Cooking Light .

Three Tomato Pasta

1 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped and drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
12 ounces penne, cooked
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella or 1/2 cup goat cheese
chopped fresh parsley, if desired
chopped fresh basil, if desired

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic, saute for a minute or two being careful not to let the garlic burn (if it does, throw it out and start over). Add sun-dried tomatoes and next 5 ingredients. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Mixture will reduce.

Prepare penne while the sauce cooks. Drain, place pasta in same pot that you cooked it in and add the sauce, cheese, parsley and basil, if using. Mix lightly and serve.

Makes 4-6 servings.

Happy Cooking!

Tortellini with Pesto Dip

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This is a super easy easy appetizer and the dip is spot on with the tortellini.  I am addicted to this stuff!  It’s perfect for a party or even as a side dish on your table.  I found the recipe in a Taste of Home cookbook submitted by Cheryl Lame.

I cut regular wooden skewers in half instead of buying some just for this and it worked out well.

Tortellini with Pesto Dip

4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tbsps olive oil, divided
1 pkg (10 ozs) refrigerated spinach tortellini
1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup prepared pesto
1/8 tsp pepper
1 pint grape tomatoes

On a double thickness of aluminum foil, place the garlic cloves and drizzle with 1 tbsps olive oil. Wrap the foil around and roast in the oven at 425º for 20-25 minutes or until tender. Cool for 15 minutes.

While garlic is cooking, cook tortellini according to the package, drain, rise in cold water. Toss with remaining 1 tbsp olive oil and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the mayo, Parmesan, milk, pesto and pepper. Squeeze the garlic into this mixture and stir until combined.

Thread tortellini and tomatoes onto skewers and serve with pesto dip.

I made all of this ahead and stored in the refrigerator.

Makes about 2 dozen skewers and 1 1/2 cups dip.

Happy Cooking!

Summer Salad

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This is such an easy salad and dressing to put together that you can really do it at the last minute.  I find that the pimientos don’t really add anything spectacular to the salad so feel free to leave them out if you don’t like them or don’t have any. This makes a large salad so feel free to cut it down to make a smaller one.

The dressing makes much more than you will need to dress this salad so either make half or less or save the rest for another salad later in the week.  It should last in the fridge for at least a week.

Summer Salad

Dressing:
1 1/3 cups canola oil
1 cup red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste

Salad:
2 bunches romaine, roughly chopped
1 bunch red or green lettuce, roughly chopped
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced, then halved
1 (4 ounce) jar diced pimientos, drained
2/3 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

Combine all dressing ingredients and whisk until well combined. Set aside. You can make earlier in the day and store in the refrigerator. Whisk well before dressing salad.

In a large salad bowl, combine all the salad ingredients except the cheese. Dress the salad with the dressing and then sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat all salad ingredients with the dressing. The salad may be make ahead up to adding the cheese and dressing and stored in the refrigerator. Just before serving, add the dressing and cheese.

Makes 10-12 servings.

Happy Cooking!

Spectacular Bruschetta

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This has got to be the BEST bruschetta I have ever made OR eaten.  The combination of flavors just works so well ~ it’s hard not to sit and eat it all.  I made it several hours ahead and stuck the tomato mixture in the fridge until it was time to make it.  There was some leftover so after another round of bruschetta, I used the tomato mixture in another recipe that I will post tomorrow.

Really, you HAVE to try this!

Spectacular Bruschetta

6 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup fresh basil, stems removed, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 French baguette
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Parmesan cheese, optional

In a large bowl, combine the Roma tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, basil, salt, and pepper. Allow the mixture to sit for 10 minutes. You can make this ahead and let it sit in the refrigerator.

Heat your broiler.

Cut the baguette into 3/4-inch slices. On a baking sheet, arrange the baguette slices in a single layer. Broil the slices for 1 to 2 minutes, until slightly brown.

Divide the tomato mixture evenly over the baguette slices. Top the slices with mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle some Parmesan over the mozzarella if desired.

Broil for 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.  Serve immediately as they get a little soggy if they sit for a long time.

Makes 12 servings.

Happy Cooking!