Thursday, November 26, 2009

Shrimp 'n' Grits

Move over Bobby Flay! My husband has been working on perfecting his version of this dish ever since he saw Flay compete with a Georgian on Throw Down. This is one of the most delicious things you will ever eat. Seriously.


6 slices of bacon
1 lb peeled shrimp
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
3/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup chardonnay
1/2 cup seafood stock
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

2 servings of instant grits, preparing as directed on package with exchanging half the water with seafood stock
1 cup grated parmesan
1 stick butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

chopped chives, for flavor and garnish

Fry bacon in large saucepan; remove and add shrimp and seasonings. After 1.5 minutes, add garlic. Once shrimp are cooked, remove from pan. With heat on high, deglaze with wine and stock. Frequently stir contents of the pan until cooked down. Turn heat to low and stir in cream.

Cook grits. Whisk in butter until well incorporated. Then, continue to whisk in additional ingredients: parmesan, whipping cream, and seasonings.

Serve shrimp on top of grits. Top with sauce, chopped chives, and crumbled bacon.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Double Chocolate Chip Cookies

I think I make these cookies more than any other, which makes it odd that I haven't blogged about them yet. Then I realized, I couldn't blog about them earlier because they always disappeared too quickly to be photographed. They are truly delightful, and I am proud to say that it is a recipe that I perfected myself. Please enjoy!

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 oz milk chocolate chips


Cream butter and shortening; gradually add sugars, beating well at medium speed of an electric mixer. Add egg; beat well.

Combine flour, soda, salt, and cocoa powder; add to creamed mixture, mixing well. Stir in vanilla. Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop dough by 2 tablespoons, 3 inches apart, onto a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 14 minutes. Eat warm or wait until cool.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Red Bell Peppers Stuffed With Venison and Chorizo

This dish is a pleasing combination of gourmet preparation with southwestern flavors and the satisfaction of comfort food. If you don't have access to venison, you could use beef; however, if you do have venison on hand, this is a great way to showcase the delightful flavor of deer meat. (Note: This recipe is very hot. If you wish to make it less spicy, omit one or two chipotle peppers. Unfortunately, you'll also be omitting some of the great smoked flavor the chipotles provide.)
For venison preparation:
8 oz. venison steak
6 cloves garlic, diced
4 to 5 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 750 ml bottle red wine
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup water
For peppers:
4 red bell peppers, cored
3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, diced
4 oz. sliced mushrooms
1 link chorizo sausage, diced
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
6 green onions, chopped
3 to 4 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup long grain rice
1/2 cup water
1/2 venison stock
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons salt
4 oz. pepper jack cheese


Heat 3 to 4 tablespoons of olive oil on medium high heat in a stock pot. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil with 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro and 6 cloves of diced garlic. Coat venison with the olive oil mixture; then, sear venison on all sides in the heated oil. Add wine and water, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer on low heat for approximately 2 hours.

Once venison is cooked, set aside and combine 1/2 cup venison stock with 1/2 cup of water, and 1/2 cup of rice in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer on low for 20 minutes.

While the rice cooks, begin cooking the diced chorizo in a large sauce pan on medium heat. Once cooked, remove the chorizo and deglaze the pan with a splash of red wine. Melt two tablespoons of butter on medium heat, then add and saute mushrooms. Next, add chopped green onions and cook for a couple of minutes before adding 1 can of diced tomatoes and diced chipotles. Then, add cooked rice, cooked diced venison, and cooked chorizo. Mix contents of the sauce pan well, adding 2 teaspoons of salt, then add 3 to 4 tablespoons chopped cilantro.

Fill the hallowed bell peppers with the stuffing and top with about 1 oz. of pepper jack cheese per pepper. Roast peppers in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes at 450 degrees F.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breasts

This dish is something I was call idiot-proof-delicious. Anytime to take something as versitile as a chicken breast, fill it with tasty items, and wrap it in bacon, you know it's going to turn out well. How could it not?

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, butterflied and pounded out for stuffing
6 slices bacon
6 stalks asparagus
2 to 3 oz. feta
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon dried basil (fresh basil would be a desirable alternative, if you have it)
4 to 5 tablespoons olive oil
6 sun dried tomatoes preserved in olive oil, sliced into strips
1/4 cup pecans, chopped
1 small shallot, diced

Blanch asparagus in boiling water until it becomes richly green in pigment, then shock in an ice bath. Prepare filling in a small bowl. Mix feta, basil, parsley, shallots, and pecans with a tablespoon of olive oil. Lightly salt and pepper the butterflied chicken breasts. Place blanched asparagus, two per chicken breast, in the center, or what would be the spine if it were a book, of butterflied chicken breasts. Next, layer strips of sun dried tomatoes, two per chicken breast, on top of asparagus, then evenly distribute feta mixture on top of the asparagus and tomatoes. Close the chicken breasts like book and wrap with bacon. Fasten the breasts and bacon into place with three toothpicks.
Heat a large frying pan with 3 to 4 tablespoons of olive oil on medium to high heat. When the oil is hot (a drop of water makes it pop) begin searing the chicken breasts. Sear breasts on all sides. Cook time is approximated 20 to 25 minutes, once the exterior is nicely browned and the bacon is crispy all over, the breast should be cook through.