The Stylist and the Seafood

by Cate on April 24, 2005

Rudely awoken this morning by my son saying, “Mama, I’m washing your hair.” Luckily for me, there was no water involved. It was just lots of tugging and pulling at my hair … at 6:30 am. Ugh. When that’s how the day starts, no telling how it’s going to end up.

The Husband worked OT today so Nicholas and I were on our own doing errands. We met The Husband for lunch at a place called Jimmy Buffs. They have these great sandwiches stuffed with crispy potato slices, peppers and onions. Those are the standards, and then you can add hot dogs, hamburgers or chicken to it. I got the plain (no meat) and it was delicious, even the bread. I gotta warn you though – don’t peek in the kitchen to see how they make the potatoes so delicious. Some things are better left a mystery.

Had a hankering for seafood tonight since I felt like we’d been having too much pasta lately, although I love the stuff. I made Baked Shrimp in Chipotle Sauce and Crabbies as a starter. No surprise that the shrimp has a kick to it, but it was delicious nonetheless and simple to make. If you make it, make sure you have a nice hunk of hot, crusty bread for sauce mopping. Yum. The Crabbies I’ve made before. A great appetizer that you can keep frozen in the freezer and broil at will for those last-minute drop-in guests.

Last night, I caught the first episode of Dave Lieberman’s new show, Good Deal, on Food Network. He has the excited exuberance of a frat boy recently graduated, and the speed of a slightly slower Jamie Oliver (but still rushed). The premise of this episode was similar to Jamie’s show … do a bunch of cooking, and your friends come over at the end to devour the results. I liked the show, and will definitely be tuning in. He is all about great recipes on a budget, which certainly comes in handy. I have to cook for dinner for a client on Monday, so I’m going to be trying out his recipes for that. He made a Cannellini, Red Onion and Arugula Salad, a Baked Chicken dish (Apricot Glazed Chicken with Dried Plums and Sage), Roasted Cauliflower and a Pudding and Berry Tart with Graham Cracker Crust for dessert (recipes below). Happy eating!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Until tomorrow…

Baked Shrimp in Chipotle Sauce Recipe
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/4 cup dry red wine
1-1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 to 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo, minced, plus 2 to 3 teaspoons adobo sauce
1 large garlic clove, minced
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1-1/2 pounds medium shrimp (not shelled)
Accompaniment: baguette

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt butter in a saucepan and stir in wine, Worcestershire sauce, chipotles, adobo sauce, garlic, and salt. Toss shrimp with sauce in a large shallow baking dish and bake in middle of oven until shrimp are just cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

1/4 cup margarine, softened
2/3 (5 ounce) container sharp processed cheese spread
8 ounces cooked crabmeat
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
8 English muffins, split

Preheat oven on broiler setting. In a medium bowl, mix together margarine and cheese spread. Stir in crabmeat, mayonnaise, garlic powder, and parsley. Spread the mixture on the split English muffins. Arrange on a cookie sheet. Broil until the cheese mixture is bubbly.

Cannellini Bean, Red Onion, and Arugula Salad
4 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 bunch arugula, thick stems removed, washed and dried
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Handful washed basil leaves, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon salt
20 grinds black pepper

Empty the cans of beans into a colander and rinse them briefly under cold water. Drain thoroughly and empty the colander into a large serving bowl. Toss the beans together with the red onion and arugula. Shake the olive oil, vinegar, chopped basil, salt and pepper in a sealable container until the salt is dissolved. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. It’s best to make and dress the salad about an hour before you serve it. Let it stand at room temperature, tossing every time you think about it. Just before serving, adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, to taste.

Roasted Cauliflower
2 heads cauliflower
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup canned chicken broth or water
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling cauliflower
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 cup coarsely shredded Parmesan or pecorino

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Break apart the cauliflower into large florets and cut off the thicker stems. Set the cauliflower pieces stem side down in a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Pour the wine and broth into the dish and drizzle olive oil over the cauliflower. Sprinkle with the oregano, and salt and pepper, to taste. Scatter the garlic over everything. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake until tender, about 30 minutes. The florets should fall apart if you poke them with your finger. Meanwhile, stir the bread crumbs, chopped parsley, and 1 tablespoon olive oil together in a small bowl. When the cauliflower is tender, sprinkle the bread crumb mix and the cheese over the florets and put the dish, uncovered, back in oven until the topping is browned, about 15 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Apricot Glazed Chicken with Dried Plums and Sage
2 roasting chickens, cut into pieces
1 (12-ounce) jar apricot preserves
15 medium dried plums, pitted
1/3 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar
3 pinches salt
20 grinds black pepper
10 cloves garlic, peeled
20 to 30 sage leaves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Trim any extra fat from the chicken pieces and transfer them to a large roasting pan or broiler pan. If you don’t have a roasting pan that’s large enough, use 2 identical 13 by 9-inch baking pans. Toss all of the ingredients together with the chicken until the chicken is evenly coated with the sauce. Arrange the chicken pieces skin-side up in the pan, spaced evenly apart. If you’re looking to prepare in advance, you can do everything up to this point and cover the roasting dishes and refrigerate until you’re ready to roast the chicken. Roast until the tops of the chicken pieces are browned and the chicken is cooked through, and the juices run clear, about 35 to 40 minutes.

Pudding and Berry Tart with Graham Cracker Crust
For the crust:
12 whole graham crackers
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) butter
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar

For the pudding:
2 (3.4-ounce) packages “cook and serve” vanilla pudding
Milk (according to pudding package instructions)

For the topping:
1 pint fresh strawberries
1/2 pint fresh blueberries
1/2 pint fresh blackberries or raspberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. For the crust: crumble the graham crackers by hand or with a potato masher to get fine crumbs. Heat the butter in a saucepan or microwave until half-melted. Work the butter into the crumbs with your fingertips until the crumbs look like wet sand. Using your fingertips, press the crust into a 9-inch pie plate or disposable aluminum pie pan to make an even layer over the bottom and sides of the pan. Bake until the crust is a shade darker, about 12 minutes, and let cool completely. Make the pudding according to the package directions. Let stand about 5 to 10 minutes stirring occasionally to keep a skin from forming on the top of the pudding. Use a spoon or rubber spatula to scrape the pudding into the graham cracker shell and smooth it into an even layer. Put the tart in the refrigerator until the pudding is chilled and set, at least 1 hour. Meanwhile, cut the stems off the strawberries and wash with the other berries in a colander under cold water. Drain, then spread out on paper towel to dry. You can either arrange the berries nicely over the pudding or just sort of gently tumble them onto it. Cover the tart lightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate. You can make the tart up to 4 hours in advance. Serve cold.

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