Baked Shrimp Scampi

I watched Ina Garten make this dish on her show a few weeks ago and was dying to try it out.  Let’s just say, it did not disappoint.  This dish kind of blows baked stuffed shrimp out of the water – it’s full of so much flavor and is really easy to put together.  I made some small adjustments and it tasted like perfection.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 lb. large shrimp (U8-12), deveined with the tails still on
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp dry white wine
TOPPING
    • 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
    • 4 tsp minced garlic (4 cloves)
    • 1/4 cup shallots, finely chopped
    • 3 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
    • 1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
    • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/4 tsp pepper
    • 1 tsp grated lemon zest
    • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
    • 1 extra large yolk
    • 1 cup panko

HOW TO MAKE IT

  • Butterfly the shrimp but leave the tails on
  • Place the shrimp in a mixing bowl and combine with the olive oil, white wine, 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper – let the shrimp sit and marinate at room temperature while you prepare the topping
  • In a small bowl, mash the softened butter together with the garlic, shallots, parsley, rosemary, red pepper flakes, lemon zest and juice, egg yolk, panko and 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper
  • Arrange the shrimp in one layer, cut side down around the edge of a 14 inch oval gratin dish, you want the tails curling up facing in towards the middle of the dish – pour the remaining marinade over the shrimp
  • Spread the topping evenly over the shrimp
  • Bake at 425°F for 12-15 minutes or until its hot and bubbly and the shrimp is totally pink – you can broil it for a minute or so to brown the top if it’s not crunchy enough

Apple Sausage Stuffing

I decided to try out a “new” stuffing – one that was made from fresh bread, herbs and bright flavors like apples and cranberries.  It’s a nice change-up from the old faithful. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 French baguettes, chopped into small cubes
  • 3/4 lb. of sausage (approximately 2 large  links), removed from the casing (I like to use one spicy and one mild)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 large stalks of celery, finely chopped
  • 2 Granny Smith apples (with skins), chopped small
  • 2 oz. dried cranberries
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

HOW TO MAKE IT

  • Place your bread cubes onto a baking sheet and bake at 300°F for 7-8 minutes
  • Melt 1 stick of butter in a large saute pan and add in the chopped onions, celery and apples
  • Add in the loose sausage meat and saute with the vegetables
  • Saute the vegetables and sausage until the meat is cooked and the vegetables are tender
  • In a large bowl, mix the bread cubes with the beaten eggs
  • Fold in the sauteed vegetables and sausage
  • Pour in 1 cup of chicken broth
    • You basically want to get this mixture to a very moist consistency, but not too wet, if it needs more moisture add in more chicken stock
  • Butter the glass dish you’re going to bake it in and pack the stuffing into the dish
  • Pour some chicken broth on top or put small chunks of melted butter on top
  • Bake at 350° F for 45 mins covered – uncover and broil on low for an additional 5 minutes or until the top is golden and crispy

White Bean Dip

This spread is a nice alternative to hummus.  When you season it with typical “Italian” flavors, it makes it a great appetizer to an Italian meal.  

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 – 15 oz. can canellini (white) beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (plus a bit for drizzling)
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed flat leafed parsley, or 3/4 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Pinch of dried rosemary (optional: tastes great without it, too)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed (you can also used roasted garlic puree)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

HOW TO MAKE IT

  • Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor
  • Pulse about 5 or 6 times – you want it to be smooth, but not totally smooth – it’s nice to have a little chunk in this dip (if you prefer a totally smooth dip, just process until smooth)

Serving Options…

    • Serve with pita chips (I like to serve this with Stacy’s Parmesan Garlic and Herb pita chips) and fresh veggies, or
    • Serve on top of slices of toasted french baguette brushed with olive oil

Rosemary Chicken Salad

This chicken salad is fresh and full of so many different flavors that blend together perfectly.  What’s better is that it’s the perfect solution for leftover roasted chicken.

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 cups chicken breast, roughly chopped (this can be oven-roasted, which is more flavorful, or poached)
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 2 scallion chutes, diced
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary, chopped (or 1 tsp dried chopped rosemary)
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

HOW TO MAKE IT

  • Combine the chopped chicken breast, celery, scallions and rosemary in a medium bowl
  • In a separate bowl, mix together  the mayonnaise, mustard, garlic powder and salt and pepper
  • Combine the mayonnaise mixture with the “dry” ingredients
  • Serve on fresh bread with lettuce for extra crunch

Faux-coccia

This quick and easy bread is a weeknight staple in our house – it pairs very well with any pasta dish.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 lb. bakery dough
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic in oil or garlic puree (comes in a jar)
  • Dried oregano to taste
  • Dried crushed rosemary to taste
  • Red pepper flakes to taste
  • Parmesan cheese

HOW TO MAKE IT

  • On a floured surface, roll your dough out into an organic shape (we’re not making a pizza here, so it doesn’t need to be a circle)
  • Transfer the dough onto a greased baking sheet
  • Drizzle 1 tsp of olive oil on top of the dough – spread it so it coats the whole surface
  • Spread the garlic evenly across the dough
  • Sprinkle the oregano, rosemary and red pepper flakes
  • Top it off with the Parmesan cheese
  • Bake at 350°F for 20-25 mins