Crispy Baked Shrimp With Lemony Mayonnaise

May 21, 2011 at 12:02 pm | Posted in Seafood | 34 Comments
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Except for my Mother’s hallowed fried chicken recipe, I’m pretty much convinced that panko bread crumbs are the perfect breading for almost anything.  The end result of a light and crispy/crunchy coating just seems like such a no fail solution to frying and even baking. 

And except for my Mother’s hallowed fried chicken recipe which is accompanied by buttery mashed potatoes and creamy white chicken gravy, I’m thinking  peppery arugula may be the best little platform for about any type of meat.  I’ve been using it alot lately and feeling so springy about the whole thing.

Continue Reading Crispy Baked Shrimp With Lemony Mayonnaise…


Holy Jolokia! This Is a Great Shrimp Appetizer Recipe…..And a Give-Away

January 7, 2011 at 7:37 am | Posted in Appetizers, Seafood | 42 Comments
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No…no…no…Hub’s camera, I said I wanted the background blurred, not the foreground. I swear, these cameras have a mind of their own!

This is a delicious appetizer, a riff on a Buffalo Chicken Wing recipe. It comes together in a snap and I could have eaten about two dozen.

The shrimp are breaded in a cayenne and  flour breading, sautéed in a Buffalo-style butter and hot wing sauce combo, then stand tall in blue cheese dressing. Served alongside a battalion of cool crunchy celery… this dish equals a delicious bite after bite of cheesy delight. But first let’s talk about the Hot Wing Sauce I used in this recipe. A sauce that’s made from the Hottest Pepper In The World!

Sticky Brand Sauces is a local Colorado company that makes some very tasty Chicken Wing and BBQ Sauces.  And I mean TASTY. Curiosity got the best of me when, at a product demonstration at Tony’s Market, a company representative told me about their highly flavorful hot wing sauce made from the mysterious Jolokia pepper (also called the Ghost Pepper). From India, he added, “It’s the hottest pepper in the world”.

Of course I bought some. How could I resist the triple-dog-dare nuance. It’s interesting to taste this sauce straight from the bottle. When it first hit my tongue I went into survival mode. With watering eyes, short of breath and the kitchen sink in sight, I ran for the phone in case I needed to call 911,  but almost immediately, and to my pleasant surprise, the heat faded into a warm peppery tingle. A pleasant flavorful pepper flavor followed. I wanted to do it all over again. Like a fine wine, it had a long long finish…in a barbed-wire sort of way.

Am I glad I bought it? Yes! And going forward I knew I would use this sauce with delightful caution and would no longer be afraid of well-crafted hot pepper sauces.

So here’s the fun part. Rob over at Sticky Brand Sauces has agreed to give one lucky winner a bottle of this very special Ghost Pepper Sauce along with a bottle of the sauce of your choice. Simple rules. Just head over to the Sticky Brand Sauce website and take a look around. Choose  one other sauce besides the Jolokia Sauce that you’d like to receive.  Leave that selection in the comment section of my blog.  That’s right the winner will get two bottles…a bottle of  Holy Jolokia and the bottle of your choice.  Sticky Brand Sauces.  So head on over and Pick Your Sticky.

Winner will be selected randomly and deadline for this contest is January 16

Easy Enough?  Fair enough?  Any questions?  Thanks Rob over at Sticky Brand Sauces.  Now let’s take a look at this great recipe.

Holy Jolokia Buffalo Shrimp (adapted from

  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 ounces Maytag blue cheese (about 1 cup crumbled)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 dozen large shrimp shelled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1-2 teaspoons Sticky Brand Sauce Holy Jolokia Wing Sauce (or your favorite wing sauce) 

In a bowl, combine first six ingredients to make blue cheese dip. Cover and refrigerate. 

In a shallow bowl, combine flour salt and cayenne pepper. Pat shrimp dry and toss in the flour mixture, coating well. In a large skillet heat oil, butter and 1 – 2 teaspoons hot sauce. Amount depends on how much heat and flavor you want. Add shrimp and cook about 4-5 minutes per side, until nicely browned. Pour a little of the sauce over the shrimp while browning.

Place dollops of the blue cheese dressing on a platter. Stand a piece of shrimp in each dollop and serve with celery sticks.

Adding a little bit at a time and tasting as I went, I used probably just over one teaspoon of this very hot sauce and it seemed to deliver the perfect flavor and heat. Showy and delicious with great flavors, I will make this appetizer over and over. 

Holy Jolokia! Buffalo Shrimp…It’s What’s for a Delicious Appetizer.

Noodles with Sauteed Shrimp and Cilantro

July 11, 2010 at 11:48 pm | Posted in Pasta, Seafood | 15 Comments
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I swear, I should never be allowed to go to any grocery story, farmer’s market or specialty market unsupervised. You might as well throw in convenience stores. I’m sure I could find some gourmet fake orange cheese product that I couldn’t live without.

Still trying to work out of the pantry to use up some of my “stock-pile” here’s what I came up with.

Love the combination of flavors here. The salty citrus combined with the cilantro and the sweet shrimp work well here. And the addition of red pepper flakes really BAM it up.  Take a look:

Noodles with sautéed Shrimp and Cilantro:

  • 1/2 pound noodles of your choice, (I used flat egg noodles)
  • 1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 T. tamari soy sauce
  • 3 T. teriyaki Sauce
  • 1 T. agave syrup (or honey)
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced and separated into rings
  • 3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 1 t. lime zest plus the juice from one lime
  • A sprinkle of crushed red pepper
  • Lime wedges for serving

Cook the noodles according to package directions.

Meanwhile in a large bowl combine 2 T. of the oil with the soy, teriaki and agave syrup. When noodles are cooked and drained, toss them in the sauce, cover and let marinate while you:

Heat 1 T. of the oil in a skillet. Add shallots and cook over moderate heat stirring until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes  Transfer shallots to a paper towel and in same oil add the garlic and cook over low heat until fragrant and just turning gold (about 2 minutes). Transfer garlic to the paper towel.

Meanwhile combine the lime juice with zest and remaining oil and toss with the de-tailed, de-veined shrimp. Season with a little salt and then saute the shrimp in the same oil until done. 

Arrange noodles in large pasta bowls.  Sprinkle with the scallions, garlic, cilantro and some crushed red pepper to taste.  Arrange the shrimp on top, lime wedges along side.

Good to the last drop.

Noodles with sautéed Shrimp and Cilantro…

It’s What’s for Dinner.

Potatoes in Banana Leaves and Shrimp with Lime Zest

December 16, 2009 at 2:51 am | Posted in Potatoes, Seafood | 41 Comments
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Steaming Potatoes Cooked In Banana Leaves

I absolutely love this method of cooking potatoes.  I learned this trick a few years ago from a Whole Foods grilling demonstration.  After a sample of the finished product, I couldn’t get to the produce department fast enough to purchase banana leaves and potatoes.  The only place I can find banana leaves right now is at H-Mart in the freezer department. 

Banana leaves are used as a kind of wrap in Thai cooking. Banana leaves not only look beautiful, but also lend a subtle aroma and taste when foods are cooked inside them.  They can be used for grilling,  baking, or steaming foods. While functioning as a wrapping material, they also lend a hint of flavor to your food that is very pleasant. 

With our mountains as a backdrop, it gets dark in Denver around 4:30 p.m. these days.   I usually use the grill for this recipe,  but with our dark days, baking works just fine. 

Potatoes in Banana Leaves: 

  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 6 medium potatoes peeled and thinly sliced, preferably with a mandolin
  • Salt and pepper
  • Ementhaler Cheese
  • olive oil
  • 1 banana leaf (thawed if not fresh)

Lay the banana leaf on a buttered baking sheet.  I also sprayed the top of the banana leaf with Pam.  Scatter potatoes and onion on the leaf.  Toss with a bit of olive oil. Generously add salt and pepper and grated Ementhaler Cheese.  

Fold and make a packet with the leaf and secure with toothpicks.  Bake 350 degrees 30 minutes.  (Depending on the thickness of the potatoes, you may need to bake up to 40 minutes.) 


This photo is steamy rather than blurry.  When you first open up the packet, the steam and flavor pleasantly hit you right in the face. 


 I served the potatoes with an easy and delicious shrimp dish that I prepared in advance.  I love this recipe. 

Shrimp Salad with Lime Zest: 

1 cup kosher salt
6 cups cold water
2 1/2 lbs medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
3 Tbs heavy cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 Tbs fresh lime juice
1 1/2 tsp finely grated lime zest
1/4 cup finely diced celery
2 Tbs finely chopped dill
1 Tbs thinly sliced garlic chives
Salt and freshly ground pepper 

1. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Prepare a bowl of ice water. 

2. In a large bowl, dissolve the kosher salt in the water. Add the shrimp and let stand for 30 seconds, then rinse well. Add the shrimp to the boiling water and cook until firm and pink, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the shrimp and transfer to the ice water to cool. Drain again and pat dry. 

3. In a bowl, beat the cream until stiff. Whisk in the mayonnaise, lime juice and zest, and stir in the celery, dill and chives. Add the shrimp and toss well. Season with table salt and pepper and serve. 

Make Ahead.  The shrimp salad can be refrigerated for up to 5 hours.  Serves 4. 



For dessert tapioca pudding topped with a sprinkle of fresh grated nutmeg.

How bout them bananas – This meal really is so delicious.  The texture and sweet flavor of the potatoes, the fresh creamy flavor of the chilled lime/dill shrimp, and then there’s that tapioca pudding.  Who needs summer.

Fried Zucchini

August 17, 2009 at 10:57 pm | Posted in Vegetables | 4 Comments
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Man slowly backing away from large zucchiniimagesWell it about that time. The time of year when Zucchini start showing up.  They mysteriously appear on your desk at work or on your front step.  They arrive like Secret Santa gifts. And they’re never normal size like the ones commercially grown that you find at the store. These are more the size of small dogs. And being the good stewards of our land, we do our best to use them. We start looking for recipes, zucchini bread, zucchini cake, sauteed zucchini, grilled zucchini, stuffed zucchini. Well here’s a new one for you and it’s quite yummy! Fried Shoestring Zucchini.   I found this on Michele’s blog.

Fried Shoestring Zucchini

Start by shredding zucchini on the fine setting of a mandolin.
Heat a saucepan of canola oil (about 2 inches deep) over medium high heat. You know it’s ready (about 350 degrees) when you dangle in a zucchini strip and it sizzles. Don’t put the zucchini into cold or cool oil or it will just absorb all of the oil. When the oil is hot, carefully add a good handful of the shredded zucchini to the oil – it will bubble fiercely because of the water in the zucchini, so just let it go awhile.
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When the water has started cooking out (which takes a surprising amount of time, like 5 minutes or more), the bubbles will die down a bit and you will see the zucchini start to turn brown. Keep cooking it until it’s mostly browned, but not burning. Remove with a spider or slotted spoon and drain on paper towels while you cook the next batch. Make sure to salt the fried shoestring zucchini while it’s still hot – and since salty foods are a perfect pairing with Champagne, why not enjoy this as an appetizer with a glass of bubbly the next time you have friends over?
Served with lemon shrimp and tomato from the garden

Served with lemon shrimp and tomato from the garden

Shrimp Tostadas

August 12, 2009 at 3:21 am | Posted in Mexican/Southwest, Seafood | 5 Comments
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This creation is one of my favorite things to make during spring,  summer…fall…oh heck, we might as well throw in winter. This is delicious, easy, fresh and makes a year round appearance on our dinner table.


 Just start out with a little slicing and dicing. 


 I don’t know why, but I don’t have good luck frying those commercially packaged corn tortillas from the “regular” store.  Sometimes they are just fine and other times they don’t work.  So until I figure out what’s going on, I buy these frozen at Whole Foods.  They fry up just right every time. 


This award winning photo is one of those corn tortillas simmering in olive oil.  Just a minute or so per side.  Just enough to crisp.


 Add a pretty lime wedge for garnish and serve it up.  I also like to squeeze a little lime juice over the top before eating (optional).  We like to serve this with a nice fresh berry scented Rose wine.  This just adds the frosting on the “fresh and crisp” cake.

Warning, these are so good and  not very graceful to eat.  In other words, they’re kind of a mess, stuff falls off, and as hard as you try not to, you sometimes end up with avocado somewhere on your face……..depending on how fresh the avocado is. 

 Shrimp Tostadas in Adobo Sauce

1/8 C. olive oil
4 corn tortillas
20 or so large shelled and deveined shrimp (enough for 4 – 5 shrimp per tostada)
1 T. adobo sauce from canned chilies in adobo sauce
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 medium tomato, diced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 tsp fresh lime juice
1 Avocado, sliced
2 medium radishes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
Lime wedges, for serving

1. In a medium, deep skillet, heat 1/4 inch oil until hot. Fry one tortilla at a time over moderately high heat until lightly golden on both sides, about 2 minutes total. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with salt.

2. Preheat a grill pan. In a medium bowl, toss the shrimp with the 1 teaspoon or so of oil and the adobo sauce. Season the shrimp with salt. Grill the shrimp over moderately high heat, turning once, until they are browned in spots and cooked through, about 4 minutes total.

3. In a medium bowl, toss the cabbage with the tomato, green onions, sour cream and lime juice and season with salt. Set the tortillas on plates and top with the cabbage slaw, shrimp, avocado, radishes and sprinkle with some cilantro leaves. Serve with lime wedges.

Servings: 2  Note:  One time I didn’t have any canned chilies in adobo sauce, so sprinkled some achiote paste over the shrimp.  Also very good. Enjoy!

Ceviche Holiday Kick Off

July 5, 2009 at 1:50 am | Posted in Salads, Seafood | 1 Comment
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003What a way to kick off the 4th of July holiday!  We enjoyed a fabulous dinner last night, fresh, delicious, pretty and healthy.  Ceviche and Salad.  First of all let me say that my cilantro and parsley in my garden are now large enough to use.  I planted both by seed on May 10.  The silly wabbit ate my basil, so I had to purchase a fully grown plant to replace it.  It felt so good to walk out to the garden and pick fresh herbs to use in this meal. 

We served this with a very chilled 2005 Chateau St. Jean Fume Blanc SonomaCounty.  We thought it was delicious with the meal.  Plus it looked so darn pretty! 

Let’s start with the Ceviche:


  • 16 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and tails removed.
  • 20 bay scallops
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 medium Vidalia Onion, finelychopped
  • 1 green onion, white and some of the green chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno, diced
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1/8 cup cilantro, rough chopped
  • 3/4 cup tomato, diced
  • 1/2 avocado, rough chopped
  • a couple dashes of hot sauce
  • Kosher Salt

Add orange juice,  lemon juice, lime juice, ketchup and garlic to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, add shrimp and bay scallops; and let poach in liquid, about 2 minutes. Using a sieve, drain shrimp and scallops over a bowl and reserve juice mixture.

Place shrimp and scallops on a plate and put in the fridge to chill. Cool down the citrus mixture by placing it in the freezer for 30 minutes.

Add diced tomato, the onions, jalapeno pepper, cilantro, olive oil, and hot sauce to cooled mixture.  Add chilled shrimp and scallops stirring well to coat.  Let flavors marry in the refrigerator for up to two hours.

When ready to serve, dip serving glasses into lime juice and then into kosher salt. Spoon diced avocado into the bottom of each glass and spoon shrimp-scallop mixture with plenty of juice  in each glass.  One of our favorite restaurants in Denver, Chama, which is now closed, served their ceviche with corn chips, so I like to do that too.

Plain and Simple Ultra Nutritious Asparagus and Pea Salad

  • 6 spears thick asparagus – tough ends removed002
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 medium basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup sweet onion, chopped
  • 1/8 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, cooked
  • 1/3 cup pea shoots
  • 1/4 cup salted roasted pistachios, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2  cup jumbo lump crab meat
  • Lettuce of your choice, rough chopped


  1. Bring a saucepan of salted water to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. Half asparagus tips lengthwise and then cut in half again. Blanch the asparagus tips until heated through, 30 seconds. Drain and transfer to the ice water to chill; drain well. Pat dry and transfer to a bowl.
  2. In a blender, blend the oil, lemon juice, basil, onion and 1/4 cup parsley. Season the dressing with salt and pepper.
  3. On a plate, place a small mound of the lettuce leaves, Top with asparagus, peas, pea shoots and pistachios.  Add a helping of crab meat to top off and drizzle generously with dressing.

BAM – YUMMO – FANTASTIC- BON APETITE and what ever else all of our celebrity chefs say – this meal is all of that.

Burbs BBQ

June 21, 2009 at 8:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments
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Kathy's Caprese Display

Kathy's Caprese Display

We all met up over at Tom and Kathy’s house for a typical Highlands Ranch All-American backyard cookout. As predicted there were a couple of non-typical culinary highlights that merit mention.

 Honorable mention goes to the Caprese Skewers.  Ever since Tom and Kathy returned from a vacation in Italy a couple of years ago, Kathy has been the Caprese Queen.  She served her latest creation;  a head of cabbage cut in half and placed flat side down on a silver platter to cleverly display the wood skewers of cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella balls and basil leaves.  The balsamic vinegar was in a bowl on the side for dipping.

 First prize also goes to Kathy for her consistently delicious Jalapeno Bacon Shrimp appetizer.  We all agree we could eat these things every day, every meal.  I’ve made them and they’re easy,  just a little time consuming to assemble, but well worth the effort.

 Kathy’s Jalapeno Shrimp

  • 24 medium shrimp — shelled, deveined
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
    24 wood toothpicks
    12 slices bacon
    24 pickled jalapeno slices
    1/2 cup mayonnaise
    1 Tbs chili sauce
    1 Tbs sweet pickle relish
    1 Tbs minced red pepper

1. Place shrimp and balsamic vinegar in a large resealable plastic bag.  Refrigerate for about 15 min.  Soak toothpicks in water while shrimp is marinating.  Cut bacon in half, crosswise.  Remove shrimp from marinade, reserving marinade.  Put 1 piece of bacon on work surface, place on shrimp at the end, place one slice of jalapeno in the crook of the shrimp, roll and secure with toothpick.

2. Stir together mayo, chili sauce, pickle relish, red pepper and 1 T. water.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

3. Broil shrimp brushing with marinade 2-3 minutes.  Turn, marinade again and cook another 2-3 min.

Servings: 8

Below you’ll find a perfectly dipped Jalapeno Bacon Shrimp – AWESOME

A perfectly dipped Jalapeno Bacon Shrimp - AWESOME

Continue Reading Burbs BBQ…

Grilled Watermelon, Curry Shrimp with Mache Salad

June 15, 2009 at 12:55 am | Posted in Fruit, Salads, Seafood | 5 Comments
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 I finally found the time to run over to Whole Foods for some mache and one of those small seedless watermelons, (which are currently very good and on sale), for this dinner recipe I’ve been wanting to prepare.

This is easy and delicious and we love it.  Once you plate this, the juices from all ingredients seem to make their way into the dollop of Greek yogart waiting underneath, marrying flavors  into a wonderful combination.   Be sure to swirl each bite in a bit of the yogurt to get the whole effect of the flavors.

I also love how the shrimp taste after their bath in the olive oil and curry.  Delicate and delicious with a lemon yellow color to match.

Curry Shrimp

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 t. curry powder
  • 16 large shrimp, deveined, peeled, tail left on

In a bowl combine curry powder and oil and mix well.  Add shrimp and marinate in refrigerator for one hour, covered.  Heat a large fry pan over med-high heat.  Add some of the oil marinade, add shrimp and saute about 1 1/2 minutes per side.


Grilled Watermelon

Sprinkle two slices (about 1 inch thick and peeled) watermelon with sugar on one side only.  Place sugared side down on hot grill.  Grill for 2 – 3 minutes peeking underneath until you see good grill marks on the cooking side..  Don’t turn, just grill on one side and serve.  We’ve had rain downpours every afternoon, so I grilled the watermelon in my Le  Creuset  grill pan, stove top.  I brushed the pan with olive oil, got it nice and hot and the watermelon grilled beautifully.

007 (2)Mache Salad

  • 1/2 English cucumber coarsly chopped 
  • 1 tablespoons coarsely chopped mint
  • 1 T.  fresh lime juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 C. mache
  • 1/2 cup Greek-style whole-milk yogurt


    Combine all ingredients except yogart in a bowl and toss well.


    To plate the meal

    Swirl a large dollup of the yogart on each plate.  Arrange a slice of watermelon, the shrimp and the mache salad on top.  Serve and enjoy.  Serves 2

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