Monday, February 23, 2015

Coconut Thai Shrimp Salad

I don't know about you, but i have been in a cold weather/hibernating slump!  It has been so chilly here and I just want to be inside making hearty stews and casseroles!  I decided I needed a plate full of color to kick up my energy. 

I made this last week and had it for lunch everyday into the weekend.  The Thai flavors and crunchy cashews make this salad super delish!  So if you are looking to eat the rainbow (and no... I'm not talking about Skittles!), indulge yourself with this healthy  salad.  

Coconut Thai Shrimp Salad

Coconut Curry Peanut Dressing
1 can full fat coconut milk
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 teaspoons curry powder
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 tablespoon sriracha
1 lime, juiced
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste

1/2 pound peeled deveined shrimp

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and whisk to combine.  Pour about 1/4 cup of dressing over the shrimp in a separate bowl and let marinate for at least an hour.

To cook shrimp, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Saute until shrimp are perfectly pink and firm.

Dressing will keep good for about a week.  This would also be a great marinade for chicken.

Salad Ingredients
greens of your choice
red cabbage
unsweetened coconut flakes
red peppers, peppadews or chilies

In a pan over medium heat, first toast the cashews and then the coconut.  I did not list amounts because it is up to you as to how you would like to assemble the salad.

When ready to eat, toss the salad salad and vegetables with a light coating of the dressing and then with the toasted cashews and coconut.  Top with shrimp and enjoy!

You can make this salad last for a few days if you keep the greens, toppings and dressing separate.  Just assemble and toss before you are ready to serve.  This would also be good in one of those mason jar salads.  Layer in this order:  dressing, shrimp, toppings, greens and cashews/coconut.  Pour out and toss when ready. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dark Chocolate Pot de Creme

If you know me, you know how much I love snow.  Well, we finally got our first big snow storm of the year down here in DC!  It came at a very inconvenient time though, as I was supposed to fly down to Georgia for work this morning.  Last night, it just kept coming down and when I went to bed my 9:00am flight was still a go.  Thankfully, it was canceled and I was able to reschedule the trip for the beginning of March. 

My company follows the Federal Government schedule so since they were closed today, I was able to work from home which was nice.  I promised the hubs that I would make him a nice chocolate dessert and have been meaning to try out this recipe for a long time.  

It literally took me no more than 15 minutes to throw this together.  It was so easy to make and the rest of the time they are just chilling in the fridge.  If you like chocolate, you have to try this recipe. 

The Grand Marnier is optional, but please try to use good quality ingredients;  especially chocolate and vanilla.  These would also be great for entertaining because you can make them a day before and then pull them out before you are ready to serve.  They basically taste like a very rich, dense, creamy and chocolate pudding. I also highly recommend making some fresh whipped cream because it helps cut through the richness. 

I'm just tickled that I finally made this recipe and am so pleased with the result.  This is one of those desserts that will be in my rotation for many years to come!  

Dark Chocolate Pot de Creme
adapted from Food Network
9 ounces dark chocolate (at least 60% cacao), chopped
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
6 large egg yolks
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

Chop up the chocolate into bite sized pieces and place in the blender.  In a medium saucepan, whisk together the milk, cream, egg yolks, sugar, Grand Marnier, vanilla and salt.  Cook for about 5-6 minutes over medium-low heat until slightly thickened.  The mixture should coat the back of a spoon. 

Pour the mixture over the chocolate in the blender and cover with lid.  Remove the top vent and place a dish towel over hole and slowly blend until chocolate is smooth and velvety.  There will be some air bubbles, but that is okay. 

Pour into small ramekins, filling them about 2/3 the way up to the top.  Place in the refrigerator and chill for at least 2-3 hours and as long as overnight.  

Top with homemade whipped cream (1 cup of cream beaten with 3-4 tablespoons of powdered sugar) and serve chilled. 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits with Honey Butter

One of the fun things about having a food blog is that it challenges me to conquer recipes that have given me difficulties in the past.  Enter biscuits.  One of my husband's favorite foods and every time that I tried to make them, something just wasn't right.   I've always been determined to learn how to make light and fluffy biscuits, but had yet to find the right recipe. 

Two weeks ago I was in Houston for work and had dinner at Rio Ranch, a restaurant attached to our HIlton Houston Westchase.  Before dinner, they served us a huge basket of biscuits, cornbread and honey butter. I could have made a meal on those biscuits.  They were so fluffy and delicious.  

After eating the biscuits, I was perplexed as to what made them so light and fluffy and then I figured it out.  Those biscuits had yeast in them!  Upon further research, I found that yeasted biscuits are actually called angel biscuits and I decided to give a recipe a try.  

These biscuits are exactly what I was looking for.  They are flaky, crumbley, buttery and fluffy as can be.  I felt like I would have made a southern cook proud with these babies!  Slather them with some whipped honey butter and you have yourself some down home cookin'. 

Fluffy Biscuits
Recipe from Add a Pinch
4 cups self rising flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 packet yeast
3 tablespoons warm water
1/2 cup vegetable shortening 
2 cups buttermilk
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 450 degrees and grease a pan or line a cookie sheet with parchment. 

In a large bowl, add flour, sugar and salt and whisk to combine.  In a small bowl, add warm water to the yeast and mix to activate.  The mixture should be smooth and velvety.  

Add shortening to flour and cut into it with two forks or a pastry cutter.  When ready, mixture should resemble small peas.  Form a well and add the buttermilk and yeast mixture.  Slowly bring down the sides and mix until a dough forms.  Do not over-mix.  

Heavily flour the counter and turn dough out.  Dough will be very sticky, so be sure to continue flouring, flipping and moving the dough around.  Pat out dough into a disc about 1 inch thick.  Cut biscuits and place in prepared pan or sheet pan.  

Bake for 12-14 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.  Remove from oven and brush the tops with melted butter. 

Makes 12-15 biscuits.  

Honey Butter
1 stick butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons cream, room temperature
1/4 cup honey

Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl and whip with whisk attachment for 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy. 

Pin It button on image hover
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...