I was in the grocery store last week and saw that they had some soft shell crab. I bought a few and decided to fry them up for dinner. I decided to go with a simple tempura style batter. The batter was very light and turned out much better than I thought it would. The next time I make this I would try to incorporate some panko bread crumbs into the batter. I also threw together a nice Asian coleslaw to serve with the crabs. You can find the recipes below.
I had a few crabs left over and decided to make a soft shell crab sandwich the next day. The coleslaw worked well with the crab and I made up a nice wasabi soy mayo to put on the bread. It turned out to be a great way to use up the left over crabs. Enjoy!
A few weeks ago I was at Triumph Brew Pub in Philadelphia and tried the avocado fries they had on the menu. I was surprised at how good they were, crunchy on the outside with a nice smooth and creamy texture on the inside. This past weekend I decided to take a stab at making them myself. The recipe is very easy, hardest part is breading the avocados. They turned out just like I remembered the Triumph ones tasting. Give them a try if you are looking for a healthy alternative to french fries!
Earlier this week I made up a nice surf and turf with a ribeye steak and some sea scallops. I also experimented with some grilled potatoes that I marinated in a chipotle sauce. For the steak I just sprinkled on some kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper then cooked it to a nice medium rare.
For the potatoes I wanted to try something different and looked up a few ideas for grilled redskinned potatoes. Most of the recipes I found were pretty basic so I modified a few to add some spice to the potatoes. I thought they turned out quite well and were a nice change up from a regular baked potato.
I cooked the scallops on Himalayan salt blocks. If you can I highly recommend getting one. They cook some of the best scallops I have ever eaten. They are also good with tuna and thinly sliced pieces of beef. The most important part of cooking with a salt block is to make sure you heat it correctly. You need to take your time to not damage the block. I go over the proper way to heat a salt block in the recipe for the scallops.
The salt blocks give the scallops a fantastic sear and a light and salty seasoning. Enjoy!
I just finished up the Dinner with Robert Irvine event and I must say it went pretty well. While there were a few technical difficulties in the show overall it was a great experience. During the program we cooked two dishes with Chef Irvine, sauteed shrimp with strawberry salsa and spinach polenta and pork tenderloin with a mustard pan sauce and a potato peach hash. Both dishes were delicious but the shrimp and polenta was the stand out dish of the evening. I had never thought to use strawberries over shrimp, the flavor combination worked so well.
The pork tenderloin and hash was also delicious. The use of peaches in the hash was a surprise but again, much like the strawberries, just worked. This whole experience has changed the way I think of fruit. Now I do not view fruit as dessert or something that stands on its own and I will be experimenting with new uses of fruit in main dishes and appetizers.
The only critiques of the event I had were he could have slowed down a bit, at times Irvine went into full chef mode and was pushing out parts of the dish quite quickly. Also it would have been helpful if we received a full ingredient list with some directions for prep, ie chopped, diced, etc. Also a heads up about preheating the oven would have been a big help too However overall for the first time doing a show like this I thought it went very well and I learned a few new techniques and will definitely be making the shrimp dish again in the near future.
With the nice weather we have been having I wanted to make use of the grill. This dinner combines one old favorite and one new favorite dish. My mom has made Summer Spaghetti my whole life and still makes it better than I have ever been able to. It is a great side dish to have throughout the summer. The honey bbq chicken wings have quickly become a summer favorite with my family. By cooking the wings over indirect heat they come out moist and tender and are healthier than frying chicken wings. The wings turn out best if you can marinate them overnight in hot sauce. Also cutting the wings into the drumstick and wing section can be time consuming. Get out there and grill and enjoy these two recipes!
For Cinco de Mayo I decided to whip up a few Mexican dishes. The guacamole recipe is quite simple and very delicious. Just remember to use a good amount of lime juice to prevent the avocados from turning brown. If you do not feel like chopping all the vegetables you can just mash up the avocados and add fresh salsa. When making the refried beans I used a mix of ancho and chipotle powder but you can used whatever type of chili powder you like most. The center piece of the meal was the chicken enchiladas. While they take a little bit of time to prepare they are well worth it. Depending on the size of your pan this recipe will make 5-8 wraps. you can also serve this dish with yellow rice, my favorite is Goya. You will find the recipes below, Enjoy!
For Some reason I have been experimenting with cooking with beer a lot recently. I wanted to make mac and cheese and saw a recipe that used hot turkey sausage and Guinness in mac and cheese and adapted some of what they did for this dish. A warning in advance, while this recipe is delicious it does not taste like your traditional mac and cheese. Depending on how hot the sausage is that you use it could have some heat to it. Also the stout gives this dish a very distinctive finish. I will walk you through the recipe in this post, you can find the full recipe by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page.
Heat a large saucepan over high heat, add oil and swirl to coat pan then reduce heat to medium. Remove casings sausages and add sausage and onion to pan. Cook for 6 min, stirring to crumble up sausage.
Add flour, salt, and pepper. Stir and cook for an additional minute.
Add beer and bring to a boil. Cook mixture for 3 min until thick and bubbly, stirring continuously.
Remove from heat and add cheddar, Velveeta, and milk; stir until smooth. Then add pasta and mix in.
Divide mixture evenly among 4 ceramic gratin dishes sprinkle with panko bread crumbs and bake at 450 for 10 min. You could also put mac and cheese in a casserole dish and serve family style, timing will remain the same. Enjoy and find the full recipe below.
I recently experimented with creating an Asian inspired sauce for chicken. I was surprised at how this sauce turned out, reducing the soy sauce brings develops a very savory flavor in this sauce and the addition of the garlic chili sauce lends a nice heat. The only downside to this sauce is that it is a bit thin, to fix this you need to add some flour to bring it to your desired consistency. You can serve this dish with Spicy Ginger Noodles and snow or snap peas.
A reminder to all the guys out there, tomorrow is Valentines Day. If you haven’t thought of anything to do for your Valentine yet how about cooking them dinner? The following recipes are easy to prepare but look and taste impressive. A few of these recipes I have posted on the blog before while others will get a full post in the future. Enjoy and I hope this helps with your Valentines Day plans.
Steak Dinner: Show her you are the master of the grill and pick your favorite steak, or her’s. Season it with kosher salt and pepper and grill to your desired finish. Serve it with a baked potato, salad, or other vegetable. You can never go wrong with a well prepared steak dinner.
Honey Mustard Pork Tenderloin: I’ll give you the shortcut for this recipe, longer recipe will be a blog post later. Marinate the pork in honey mustard dressing overnight. Cook in oven at 350 degrees F for 20-24 min or until done. While pork is cooking take spinach, garlic, shallot, olive oil, lemon juice, and whole grain mustard put in pan and saute spinach until wilted. Serve pork with spinach and wild rice. This is a very simple recipe with great flavor.