Vegetable Topped Baked Grouper

I sometimes arrive in the grocery store, head to the seafood department and stand there with a blank stare on my face.  What should I try now?  I lately have an ongoing love/hate affair with some types of seafood.  I used to bake salmon weekly, now I don’t think I have baked salmon for over three months.  Recently, halibut and sea bass are some of my favorites, however, after selecting grouper fillets and making Vegetable Topped Baked Grouper, I think I have a new favorite from the seafood department!

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Vegetable Topped Grouper

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds grouper fillets
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 red onion, cut into thin slices
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 cup white wine

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Oil a baking dish.  Squeeze lemon juice over fillets in baking dish.  Top fillets with onion, green pepper, and tomato.  Top with crumbled feta cheese.  Drizzle with olive oil and season with Italian seasoning.  Pour wine into baking dish.  Bake fillets for 15 - 20 minutes or until fish flakes easily.  Broil fish at high setting for a few minutes after baking until the cheese is browned.  

 

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Grilled Chicken with Basil Butter

Oh let me count the many ways to grill chicken and the many recipes you will find.  One recipe search and you will find hundreds for grilled chicken breasts with every imaginable marinade or topping.  I think the key to a perfectly grilled boneless skinless chicken breast is to not overcook the chicken, so it is moist and delicious.  I have been topping grilled chicken with basil butter for years.  This is not a recipe that takes a rocket scientist to figure out!   Salt and pepper the chicken, grill over medium temperature turning frequently and top with a large dollop of basil butter.  Simple and spectacular.  

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Grilled Chicken with Basil Butter

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

Instructions

  1. Combine butter, basil and garlic salt; divide in half and set aside.  Salt and pepper chicken breasts.  Grill over medium heat turning frequently until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees, approx. 20  minutes. Each time you turn the chicken, top with a small teaspoon of basil butter.  When finished cooking, remove chicken to a platter and top each breast with a dollop from the remaining 1/2 of basil butter.  Serve

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Grilled Flank Steak with Pepper Jack Cream Sauce

One of our favorite neighborhood Mexican restaurants serves a wonderful grilled steak with a cheese sauce along with a cheese enchilada  and beans.  It is so good, that we order it every time we go to that restaurant.  I had a flank steak in the freezer and decided I wanted to try my hand at this delicious entree.  I first combined lime juice, orange juice, garlic, diced jalapeno and a few other ingredients to marinate the steak.  I then made a basic cheese sauce and spiced it up with pepper jack cheese.  Served along side corn tortillas, tomato wedges, and avocados you will have a most spectacular presentation.   The cheese sauce is so good you will want to have plenty at the table to serve with the vegetables, tortillas and steak.  

 

 

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Jalapeno Marinated Flank Steak

Ingredients

  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients, pour over flank steak, refrigerate and marinate 2 - 24 hours.

 

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Pepper Jack Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili seasoning
  • 4 ounces pepper jack cheese grated

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, melt the butter.  Add the flour and stir until bubbly and all of the flour is incorporated.  Slowly stir in the milk.  Increase heat to medium-high and whisk constantly until bubbly and thick.  Add seasonings.  Continue stirring.  Remove from heat and add the cheese, stir until melted.  (If you made the sauce in advance and your steak is not finished on the grill, and your cheese sauce thickens - add a bit more milk to the cheese sauce and stir over low heat)

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Butterflied Grilled Shrimp

When you grill shrimp, leaving the shell on keeps the flavor of the shrimp and does not dry it out.  I purchased large shell-on shrimp, cut the shell, deveined and butterflied the shrimp. Then I quickly marinated them in a white wine sauce, grilled them over medium high heat  and served them with cocktail sauce and butter for dipping.  I also grilled two lemon halves and after everything came off the grill, squeezed the lemon over the shrimp.  What a finger lickin’ good recipe this is – easy to prepare and a perfect spring dinner.  

I am trying a new recipe format – tell me what you think…
Looking for any particular recipes?  I am always looking for new ideas

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Butterflied Grilled Shrimp

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound shrimp, shell-on
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 lemon squeezed
  • 1 lemon cut in half
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut the shell of the shrimp, carefully de-vein and butterfly shrimp; using a paring knife make an incision from the tail to the opposite end. Do not cut all of the way through. Place in a large baking dish. Combine white wine, red pepper, parsley, olive oil  juice of 1/2 lemon,and salt and pepper. Drizzle over shrimp. Let stand for 15 - 20 minutes. Heat grill to medium high heat. Place shrimp on the grill, cook 4 minutes and flip to other side for approx. 3 minutes until shrimp is opaque. Grill the lemon halves. Remove shrimp to a platter with the grilled lemon halves. Squeeze grilled lemon over shrimp prior to serving. Serve with melted butter or your favorite cocktail sauce.

 

 

 

 

 

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Fettuccine with Creamy Crab Basil Sauce

The weather was absolutely beautiful this weekend and when searching the seafood section of the market I came across fresh crabmeat and knew that was what we were having for dinner.  Into my recipe box I went and found this recipe that I have not made in years.  It was as delicious as I remembered.  You can prepare this in under 30 minutes and what a extraordinary meal.  It was especially memorable since we had dinner on our porch in front of the fire in February.  A lovely evening to remember.

Fettuccine 2

 

Fettuccine with Creamy Crab Basil Sauce
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 3 tablespoons butter
  2. 3 tablespoons olive oil
  3. 2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 1/3 cup whipping cream
  6. 1/3 cup white wine
  7. 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves
  8. 1/2 cup cooked crabmeat
  9. salt and pepper
  10. 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  11. 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
  12. 1 lb. fettuccine
Instructions
  1. Melt butter and oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add tomatoes and garlic, simmer slowly until the tomatoes soften and begin to break down. Add cream and 1/3 cup white wine. Simmer 10 minutes, stir frequently. thin with additional wine if sauce become too thick. Stir in basil, crabmeat, salt and pepper; simmer 3 minutes. Add 1/2 of the Parmesan cheese and 1/2 of the parsley. Keep sauce warm. Cook pasta as directed on package, toss pasta with sauce. Garnish with reserved cheese, parsley and basil leaves.
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Last Minute Broiled Shrimp

I am sure my schedule recently mirrors your schedule.  Getting back to a routine after the holidays, packing away all of the holiday decor, and trying to stay on a normal healthy eating schedule all seems to be a worthy goal.  Well, after a long week working and avoiding the grocery store, it was time to open the freezer and see what I could find and what I could make for dinner in under an hour.  First thing I did was find a bag one-half full of shrimp leftover from the holidays.  I tossed the frozen uncooked shrimp in a colander under cold running water while I put a few ingredients together.  I had made a recipe similar to one that required threading the shrimp on skewers, well I decided I did not have the time or the energy to thread shrimp on skewers.  Out came my small cast iron skillet.   In a small bowl I mixed the topping ingredients and mixed in the shrimp.  I let them marinate for approx. 20 minutes, then poured the mixture into the skillet, popped it under the broiler and our came the most delicious shrimp.  A great way to start the new year in my kitchen.

last-minute-broiled-shrimp

Last Minute Broiled Shrimp
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Ingredients
  1. 1 lb. uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  2. 6 tablespoons olive oil
  3. 2/3 cup Italian bread crumbs
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 1 tablespoon Italian parsley, minced
  6. 3/4 teaspoon salt
  7. ground black pepper
  8. lemon wedges
Instructions
  1. Mix together the olive oil, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the shrimp. Combine and let the shrimp marinade for 20 minutes at room temperature. Pour into entire contents of bowl into a cast iron skillet. Preheat broiler to high. Cook the shrimp 3 minutes, stir, cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until the shrimp are cooked through. Serve hot with lemon wedges. Serves 3 - 4.
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Slow Cooker Chili

With all of the holiday activity going on, who has time to make dinner?  My secret weapon this time of year is my slow cooker. Fix it, forget it, and come home to the wonderful aromas of dinner without all of the last minute preparation.  This recipe I have been making for years, when our children were young and it seemed like we were never home, this was a staple.  With both of the kids participating in team sports, it seemed like they were always looking for a healthy delicious meal.  This Slow Cooker Chili is one of my go to recipes; our favorite is to serve it over pasta, topped with grated cheddar and a dollop of sour cream.  This recipe is the perfect base for so many meals, tonight it is chili on a baked potato (it also is a terrific topper for your nachos) – yum!

slow-cooker-chili

Slow Cooker Chili
Serves 10
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Ingredients
  1. 3 pounds lean ground beef
  2. 2 - 28 oz. can chopped tomatoes
  3. 2 onions, diced
  4. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 3 tablespoons chili powder
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. 1 teaspoon paprika
  8. 1 teaspoon oregano
  9. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  10. 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  11. 3/4 cup beef broth
  12. 16 oz. can kidney beans (optional)
Instructions
  1. Brown beef with onions and garlic. Combine beef mixture and all remaining ingredients in your slow cooker, stir well. Cook on low 8 - 10 hours.
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Apple Brandy Pork Chops

What a delight for the eyes when you enter any produce department this time of year and see pumpkins, apples and fall produce – I definitely wanted to cook a fall meal.  My husband, my chief taste tester, said this was one of the best recipes I have concocted.  He told me to post that you should definitely serve this at your next dinner party or when you want to impress anyone with your cooking skills.  It is so easy and delicious, you cannot go wrong with this recipe!   After those praises from my chief taster do I need to say more?  

apple-brandy-pork-chops

 

Apple Brandy Pork Chops
Serves 2
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Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  2. 1 large shallot, diced
  3. 1 apple, sliced (I used a Honeycrisp apple)
  4. 2 1-inch thick pork chops with bone-in
  5. salt and pepper
  6. 1/3 cup apple brandy
  7. 1/2 cup heavy cream
  8. 2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium ovenproof skillet ( I used my cast iron skillet) heat over medium to medium-high heat, add oil. When hot, add shallots and apples. Cook stirring frequently until shallots are soft and apples are golden, remove from skillet. Salt and pepper chops on both sides, add to hot skillet and cook until golden brown on both sides. When brown, remove from skillet. Add brandy to skillet and deglaze pan, stir in cream and 1/2 of the parsley. Bring to a boil. Add chops, apples, and shallots. Place skillet in preheated oven and bake 45 minutes. Remove from oven, top with remaining parsley and serve. I served with egg noodles, would also be terrific to serve with a wild rice mix.
Notes
  1. Serving more than 2? This amount of sauce would be perfect for 4 pork chops, if serving more, double the amount of shallots, apples,brandy and cream amounts, bake in a 9 x 13 baking dish.
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Chicken Broccoli Portobello Pasta with Balsamic Dressing

Looking for an easy dish to serve the next time you entertain?  Chicken Broccoli Portobello Pasta is the perfect dish.  Early in the day begin marinating the mushrooms and chicken, steam the broccoli, fire up the grill, cook your pasta and in under 30 minutes you have a great main course.  Bring this beautiful entree to the table and you have a feast for your eyes as well as a feast for the hungriest of appetites. Easy, delicious and a great presentation – my way of entertaining!

( If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, it makes a terrific cold pasta salad the next day.  Toss with a bit of ranch dressing and you are set. )

 

chicken broccoli portobello pasta

 

Chicken Broccoli Portobello Pasta with Balsamic Dressing
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. Dressing
  2. 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  3. 3/4 cup olive oil
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  6. 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  7. 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  8. Chicken/Vegetables
  9. 6 portobello mushrooms
  10. 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  11. 1 bunch of broccoli, cut into florets
  12. 1 16 oz. package thin spaghetti
  13. Twist of lemon for garnish
Instructions
  1. Combine dressing ingredients, set aside. Remove mushroom stems and place mushroom caps in a one gallon zip bag. Pour 1/2 of the dressing over the mushroom caps, cover and refrigerate for approx. 6 hours.
  2. Transfer mushrooms to a plate and add chicken breasts to the marinade left in the zip bag, marinate for 30 minutes prior to grilling. Steam broccoli florets until tender when pieced with a fork (4-5 minutes), drain and set aside. Prepare grill. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Grill chicken, approx. 8 minutes per side. Cook spaghetti according to package instructions. During the last 5 - 10 minutes of the chicken grilling, add the mushrooms and grill.
  3. Drain pasta and toss with steamed broccoli and remaining dressing ( the 1/2 that was reserved). Top with grilled chicken and grilled mushrooms. Garnish with lemon twists.
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Baked Chicken with Olives and Stuffed Roasted Bell Peppers

Chicken with Olives and Stuffed Roasted Bell Peppers is a perfect week night meal or company fare.  Moist chicken along with fresh mozzarella stuffed peppers, olives and drizzled with red pepper oil.  Since I had fresh mozzarella in the refrigerator and had just picked up a bag of small sweet peppers, I decided to combine the two, toss in some olives and my what a sweet dinner it was.  A feast for the eyes and well as a delicious feast with every bit   I hope you will agree. 

baked chicken with olives and peppers

 

Baked Chicken with Olives and Roasted Stuffed Peppers
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 12 small assorted bell peppers/various colors (I used the mini sweet peppers)
  2. 6 - 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  3. olive oil
  4. salt and pepper
  5. fresh mozzarella cheese
  6. 1/2 cup assorted sliced olives
  7. 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  8. 2 cups fresh spinach leaves
Instructions
  1. Line a sheet pan with foil. Heat broiler to high heat. Place peppers on pan, broil 8 - 10 minutes until all sides of the peppers are charred, turn frequently. Remove from oven, wrap peppers in foil for 10 minutes. Remove peppers, slice one side of each pepper, open peppers and scrape out seeds. Set peppers aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place chicken thighs on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper. Bake chicken for 40 minutes. While the chicken is baking, combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil and crushed red pepper flakes in a small bowl, set aside. Slice mozzarella cheese into 1/4 inch slices, cut to approximate size of 1/2 of each pepper, place one piece in each pepper and fold over remaining half of pepper.
  3. When the chicken has baked for 40 minutes, remove pan from oven, place stuffed peppers on baking sheet, return to oven for 3 - 5 minutes or until the cheese is beginning to melt in each pepper.
  4. Line a serving plate with the spinach leaves. Remove chicken and stuffed peppers from the oven. Place on the bed of spinach. Top the chicken and stuffed peppers with the assorted sliced olives. Drizzle the red pepper infused oil over the entire dish. Serve.
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