my foodgawker gallery

 

Wednesday
Aug032011

BBQ spiced shrimp with tomato salad

This is Week #31 of my 2011 cooking challenge! Click here to view all recipes from this challenge. All recipes created for this challenge come from the Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2010: An Entire Year of Recipes.

I traveled far and wide to gather the ingredients for this salad. Ok, really it wasn't so far or wide, and this recipe was totally worth going to two stores for. Our local grocery store didn't have heirloom tomatoes or a good jumbo shrimp selection, but Whole Foods pulled through. Back to the totally-worth-it part. If I could be a salad, this very salad is the salad I would be. It has seafood and spice and tomatoes and onions and basil, which apparently when all put together makes The Perfect Salad. That, coming from the queen of salads, is saying a lot.

And lucky for me, my husband didn't seem too interested. I played it down. "Eh, it's pretty good." All the more for me! Guess what I'll be eating for lunch and dinner for the next couple days!

It's also super easy to make (30 minutes or less), which is always a selling point for me.

In a blender, puree the following until smooth:

1/3 cup packed basil leaves

1/3 cup olive oil

Season with kosher salt and pepper and set aside.

Light a grill.

In a small bowl, combine the following ingredients:

Mix together.

Brush 1 pound of jumbo shrimp with canola oil and coat the shrimp with the spice mixture.

Grill the shrimp over moderately high heat, turning once, until they are lightly charred and cooked through, about 4 minutes total. 

Arrange heirloom tomato slices on a plate (or maybe 2 plates if you are sharing) along with sliced red onions.

Drizzle the basil mixture over the tomatoes and onions. Top with the shrimp.

Garnish with basil leaves, if desired.

As I finished up photographing this salad, The Perfect Salad, the sun had just gone down which made the outside temperature tolerable. I sat outside by myself, devouring every last morsel on my plate while enjoying the peace that follows a setting sun. 

BBQ Spiced Shrimp with Tomato Salad

This salad is INCREDIBLE, with a delicious combination of flavors and array of beautiful colors. (source: Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2010)

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Aug 3, 2011

Serves: 8

Total time: 25 min

BBQ Spiced Shrimp with Tomato Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup packed basil leaves, plus extra leaves for garnish
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure ancho chile powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 24 jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3 large yellow heirloom tomatoes (1 1/2 pounds), sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
Instructions:
  1. In a blender, puree the 1/3 cup of basil leaves with the olive oil until smooth. Season the oil with salt and black pepper.
  2. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. In a small bowl, mix the sweet smoked paprika with the pure ancho chile powder, light brown sugar, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of black pepper. Brush the shrimp with the canola oil and season all over with the spice mixture. Grill the shrimp over moderately high heat, turning once, until they are lightly charred and cooked through, about 4 minutes total.
  3. Arrange the tomato and onion slices on a platter and drizzle with the basil oil. Top with the shrimp, garnish with the remaining basil leaves and serve.

 

 

Sunday
Jul312011

Cherry gazpacho with basil

This is Week #30 of my 2011 cooking challenge! Click here to view all recipes from this challenge. All recipes created for this challenge come from the Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2010: An Entire Year of Recipes.

Bing cherries are the first things I see upon entering the grocery store. I almost always put a bag in my cart. Usually I end up snacking on them throughout the week and ultimately eating the entire bag by myself. My four-year-old tells me, "Mommy, you're going to turn into a cherry! And Sammy is going to turn into a blueberry!" It's true, I can see both things happening. Sam adores his blueberries and I adore my cherries. I rarely think to cook with cherries because then I would need to buy two bags every week! One to snack on and one to cook with. This week, though, I desperately wanted to try this cherry gazpacho. And I'm glad I did. Upon taking my first bite of this summery soup, the following words popped into my head: FRESH, cherries, cucumbers, FRESH, summer, basil, YUM.

You will need two slices of 1-inch-thick Pullman bread. Drizzle 1 slice of the bread with olive oil on both sides.

In a medium skillet, fry the bread over moderate heat, turning once or twice, until golden, about 4 minutes.

Rub the fried bread slice with 1 whole garlic clove. Cut the bread into 1-inch cubes and transfer to a medium bowl.

Add to the bowl:

1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1 yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1 seedless cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 pound bing cherries, pitted (reserve 12 cherries for later)

3 ounces tomato juice

1 1/2 ounces red wine vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Let this mixture stand at room temperature for about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, remove the crust from the remaining bread slice. Cut the bread into 1/2-inch cubes and toss with 1/4 cup of olive oil.

Add the bread cubes to a skillet along with:

1 thyme sprig

1 whole garlic clove

Cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until the croutons are browned and crisp, about 4 minutes. Transfer the croutons to paper towels to drain. Discard the garlic clove and thyme sprig and season the croutons with salt.

Working in batches, puree the cherry and bell pepper mixture in a blender until completely smooth. Strain the gazpacho through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl. Season the soup with salt, pepper and Tabasco.

Ladle the cherry gazpacho into shallow bowls. Garnish with:

Reserved cherries, diced

Croutons

Torn basil leaves

Serve right away!

Cherry Gazpacho with Basil

source: Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2010

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Jul 31, 2011

Serves: 4

Total time: 3 hrs

Cherry Gazpacho with Basil

Ingredients:

  • Two 1-inch-thick slices of white Pullman bread
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 3 garlic cloves, 1 thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1 seedless cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 pound bing cherries, pitted, 12 cherries finely diced
  • 3 ounces tomato juice
  • 1 1/2 ounces red wine vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • Tabasco
  • 4 basil leaves, torn, for garnish
Instructions:
  1. Drizzle 1 slice of the bread with olive oil on both sides. In a medium skillet, fry the bread over moderate heat, turning once or twice, until golden, about 4 minutes. Rub the fried bread on one side with 1 whole garlic clove. Cut the bread into 1-inch cubes and transfer to a medium bowl. Add the sliced garlic, red and yellow bell peppers, cucumber, whole pitted cherries, tomato juice, red wine vinegar and ¼ cup of the olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper and let stand at room temperature for about 2 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, remove the crust from the remaining bread slice. Cut the bread into ½-inch cubes and toss with the remaining ¼ cup of olive oil. Add the bread cubes to the skillet along with the thyme sprig and the remaining whole garlic clove and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until the croutons are browned and crisp, about 4 minutes. Transfer the croutons to paper towels to drain. Discard the garlic clove and thyme sprig and season the croutons with salt.
  3. Working in batches, puree the cherry and bell pepper mixture in a blender until completely smooth. Strain the gazpacho through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl. Season the soup with salt, pepper and Tabasco.
  4. Ladle the cherry gazpacho into shallow bowls. Garnish with the diced cherries, croutons and torn basil leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and serve the soup right away.

 

 

Thursday
Jul282011

Grilled tomatoes with herbs and lemon

Mmmm, I love summer. I plan to enjoy every morsel of summer sun that shines upon our sometimes-frigid state. We Minnesotans are funny like that. In the summertime, if we are not working, we are ALWAYS outside. Every single one of us. Every lake, sidewalk and waterpark is packed full of people. In the spring, when it's, you know, 40 degrees, you can find us all outside donning short-sleeved shirts. I blame it on the intense winters we endure. They make us crazy! We certainly do appreciate our outdoor/warm sun time (or anything above 40-degree sun time).

If we are not throwing frisbees in a park or taking our kids down waterslides, we are grilling! Nothing screams "I love warm weather!" quite like grilling. My husband and I grill a lot. Well, he works a lot this time of year, so we grill as much as we can. The other night while he grilled some delicious burgers for dinner, I grilled tomatoes! Dear goodness, these were fantastic! They were super easy and packed full of flavor.

Heat a grill to medium-high heat.

In a small bowl, combine:

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon lemon zest

2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh oregano, finely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and ground pepper, to taste

Halve 4 large tomatoes crosswise and brush the cut sides with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.

Place them cut-side down onto the grill. Grill for 4 minutes. Flip the tomatoes and grill until the skins begin to char, 3 minutes. 

Transfer to a serving plate, cut sides up.

Drizzle the lemon-herb mixture over top, and serve warm.

That night I ate just what you see in the photo. A burger and two grilled tomatoes.

The next day, I added a leftover grilled tomato to a turkey sandwich. YUM.

And that night, I added a leftover grilled tomato to a leftover burger. YUM YUM.

Click here for a printable recipe!

Monday
Jul252011

Snap peas with mint

As promised, I'm back to share this super simple yet totally delicious snap pea recipe with you! Thanks so much for the birthday wishes. The day was a ton of fun, and....lobster is TOMORROW NIGHT! Tummy rumbling!

In a 12-inch skillet, bring 1 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of butter to a boil over high heat.

Add 1 pound of trimmed snap peas. Cover and cook until bright green, about 2 minutes.

Remove the lid and reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking, tossing occasionally, until the peas are crisp-tender and the water has evaporated, 2 to 4 minutes.

Remove from the heat and toss with 1/2 cup packed, thinly sliced fresh mint leaves. Season with salt and pepper.  

Serve with...LOBSTER! Or just pork.

Click here for a printable recipe!

Saturday
Jul232011

Pork chops with rhubarb-cherry sauce

This recipe has nothing to do with the fact that today is my birthday. It just happens to be the next recipe in line, so to speak. I suppose I could have made something up, like, I eat rhubarb and pork on my birthday every year. Hmm, that would be an unusual tradition. Actually, in case you are wondering, every year on my birthday my husband takes me out for a nice dinner. This year he has to work, so we are postponing it a few days. For the past few years, I have chosen Osaka as my birthday dinner spot, and I think I will choose it again this year. Mmm, can't wait for lobster, scallops, steak and fried rice! 

I cannot think of an appropriate transition from lobster back to rhubarb and pork, so I am declaring an abrupt change of subject!

I do have to say that this was a delightful little meal. I prepared it relatively quickly and I thoroughly enjoyed every bite.

In a small bowl, combine:

1/2 cup dried cherries (as I was making it, I thought how fabulous it would be to replace these with chopped bing cherries)

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup hot water

Let stand for 10 minutes to soften the cherries.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil over medium-low heat.

Add 1/2 cup finely chopped onion and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.

Add to the saucepan:

Cherry mixture

8-10 ounces rhubarb, ends trimmed, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces (2 cups)

3 tablespoons sugar

Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the rhubarb has softened, 5 to 8 minutes.

Stir in a pinch of ground nutmeg and season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and keep warm.

Generously season both sides of 4 pork loin chops (each 1/2-inch thick and 6-8 ounces) with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook the pork (in 2 batches) until browned and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Serve topped with the warm sauce.

There is a quick little recipe for the snap peas you see in the photos that I will share. Perhaps tomorrow or the next day.

Till then! I must get on with turning 36 years old!

Click here for a printable recipe!