Margarita Marinated BBQ Shrimp Caesar Salad

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Margarita Marinated BBQ Shrimp Caesar Salad

After riding our bikes from Midcity to Greek Fest, Scott and I were sun-burned and tired from our canoe ride on Bayou St. John. We had riden along Lake Ponchatrain and I started craving Gulf shrimp.  We luckily had some in the freezer so when we got home, Scott threw them in the marinade and I made Caesar dressing for this perfect dish on a HOT New Orleans Sunday.

Ingredients

Shrimp marinade

24 large head on shrimp
1/4 cup of margarita mix
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp of salt
2 ounces of tequila

One head of romaine lettuce

1/2 Packet of Cajun King BBQ Shrimp Seasoning

Croutons

Directions for Shrimp

Skewer and grill marinated shrimp about 10 minutes (depends on heat of grill). Remove from skewers and finish on stove top with 2 tbsp of butter and 1/2 packet of bbq shrimp seasoning mix.

Caesar Dressing
1 egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 anchovies
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup shredded parmesan

Directions

Add salt and pepper to the salad bowl. Using the back of a soup spoon, grind the garlic against the wall of the bowl until it becomes a paste. Then add the anchovies, and grind them into a paste. Follow the same procedure, adding the Dijon, egg yolk, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce, 1 at a time. Toss with a couple of chopped heads of romaine. Place grilled shrimp on top of greens.

Inspired by: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/member/views/AUTHENTIC-CAESAR-SALAD-DRESSING-50000232#ixzz2Vm3u3iXA

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Crock Pot Pork Carnitas

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Crock Pot Pork Carnitas

This one is super easy and such a great use of your crock pot!

Ingredients:

2-4 pounds pork shoulder (bone or no bone)
1 onion
4 cloves garlic
1 Tb lime juice
1 Tb lemon juice
1 Tb olive oil
2 tsps oregano
1 tsp cumin
Salt and pepper

Directions:

Rinse and dry pork. Salt and pepper liberally. Mix olive oil with oregano and cumin and use it as a rub. Cover the pork with it and place into crock pot. Cover with chopped onion and garlic. Add lemon and lime juice. Cook on high setting for 4 hours, then reduce to low for a couple hours if in a hurry, or just leave it on low for 8-10 hours. When done it will fall apart effortlessly.

(No you don’t need to add any other liquid to this)

Inspired by: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/melissa-darabian/pork-carnitas-recipe/index.html

Lobster Thermidor

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Lobster Thermidor

This is specifically meant as a romantic dinner for two, and trust us, you both will love it.

Ingredients:

Lobster tails (2 large ones are 3 smaller ones, frozen is fine)
2 Tbs butter
2/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp minced onion
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
2/3 cup half and half
1 Tb sherry
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1/8 cup mushrooms (sliced or diced)
1 tsp lemon juice
Paprika

Directions:

Boil lobster. If frozen, boil for around 15-20 minutes. If fresh, boil for less than that. Cook until bright red and the tail curls. As they boil, prepare the sauce. Start at a medium temp with the butter and onion and mushrooms. After a few minutes, reduce to a medium low setting and throw in the remaining ingredients except for the paprika. When lobster is done, remove the meat and cut it up into small chunks. Try not to ruin the shells as you can still use them. Just slice them open down the middle, crack open the tail, and pull out the meat. Toss the chunks of lobster into the sauce and let that simmer for around ten minutes. Stir frequently, but while that’s simmering, trim the shells a bit to make them more functional as bowls. Stuff the deliciousness into the shells. Top with a dusting of Parmigiano Reggiano and paprika. Broil for 3-5 minutes, or until you get a nice browning on top to your liking.

Laissez les bons temps rouler!

Chicken and Cauliflower Tikka Masala

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Chicken Tikka Masala

Marinade Ingredients:

1 cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon hot curry powder
1 teaspoon ground tabasco pepper (Cajun Kicker)
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon salt
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs (cut up into skewer size pieces)
4 long skewers

Sauce Ingredients:

1 tablespoon butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
1 cup chopped cauliflower
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons hot curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground tabasco pepper (Cajun Kicker)
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup half and half or cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

For marinade combine yogurt, lemon juice, cumin, curry powder, tabasco pepper, black pepper, ginger, and salt. Stir in chicken, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Get your grill going. When grill is ready put chicken onto skewers, and discard marinade. Grill until juices run clear, about 5-10 minutes on each side, depending on the heat of your grill/coals.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1 minute. Season with cumin, paprika, hot curry powder, ground tabasco, and salt. Stir in tomato sauce and cream. Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. Add grilled chicken and cauliflower, and simmer for 15 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter, and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Commentary: The use of Coussou’s Cajun Kicker Pure Ground Tabasco really gives this traditional Indiana dish some nice Louisiana heat (some other hot ground pepper will do fine as a replacement though), and the cauliflower acts as a curry sponge which is awesome. Also, doing this with skewers really results in a wonderful flavor and tenderness for the chicken if done right.

Inspired by: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/chicken-tikka-masala/

Baked Wasabi Catfish with Bok Choy, Broccoli, and Brown Rice

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Baked Wasabi Catfish

Ingredients

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons wasabi paste

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/4 teaspoon crushed oregano, or more to taste

1 pinch ground black pepper, or to taste

16 ounce catfish fillet

1 pinch Cajun seasoning (such as Tony Chachere’s), or to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Line a baking dish with aluminum foil and grease with olive oil.
  2. Mix soy sauce, olive oil, wasabi paste, garlic, oregano, and black pepper in a bowl. Cut a diagonal slash across each piece of fish and coat fish with wasabi mixture; spoon remaining wasabi mixture over fish and into the diagonal cuts. Place fish into prepared baking dish and sprinkle with Cajun seasoning.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until fish is opaque and flakes easily, 7 to 9 minutes.

Inspired by: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/wasabi-trout/

Bok Choy

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of diced picked ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 pounds bok choy (about 2 medium bunches), cleaned, ends trimmed, and cut on the bias into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water

Directions

  1. In a large frying pan with a tightfitting lid, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant but not brown, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add the bok choy and, using tongs, fold it into the garlic-ginger mixture until coated, about 1 minute. Add the soy sauce and water, cover, and cook until steam accumulates, about 1 minute. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the greens are just wilted, the stalks are just fork tender but still crisp, and most of the water has evaporated, about 2 minutes.
  3. Turn off the heat, stir in the sesame oil, and season with salt if desired.

Inspired by: http://www.chow.com/recipes/28071-sauteed-bok-choy