I've been in serious organizing mode lately and no room (or closet) in my house is safe. I have gone through every room and cleaned out everything unnecessary. (What does it say about me that I'm not emotionally attached to ANYTHING?)
My kitchen underwent some of the most intense scrutiny in the midst of my cleaning frenzy. I went through my kitchen with a fine tooth comb and I got rid of everything that was not absolutely essential.
My refrigerator and my freezer didn't escape the clean out either. (I might have a problem. :)) I found all sorts of things in the back of the freezer that I had completely forgotten about. It's kind of like discovering a Christmas gift that I had bought early and hidden away with the intention of pulling out for Christmas - in JANUARY. (Story of my life.)
I always get super excited about finding unexpected food in my house. Among the treasures that I unveiled during my freezer clean out was a bag of frozen shrimp. Perfect timing because Cook's Illustrated just published a recipe for Shrimp and Vegetable Kebabs. I took it as a sign that I was supposed to make these for my family.
Shrimp and Vegetable Kebabs
2 Tablespoons salt
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 quart water
1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 large bell pepper, cut into 3/4 inch strips
12 cremeni mushrooms
12 scallions, cut into 3 inch lengths
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 lemon, juiced
1/8 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dijon mustard
Transfer vegetables to a cutting board to cool.
Thread a shrimp onto each skewer. Follow with a mushroom, three scallions and a couple of pepper strips.
Brush kebabs with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill.
Serve shrimp with rice or couscous.
Serve with individual dipping dishes of lemon vinaigrette.
Of course, if you've got some dinner guests who prefer their vegetables without shrimp OR if you just want to grill some extra shrimp for another day, you can make shrimp only kebabs too.
A few extra shrimp to toss on a green salad for lunch is never a bad thing. I'm pretty sure that this lemon vinaigrette would make an amazing dressing for a salad also. It's definitely worth a try.
We spent a lot of our time just hanging out around the harbor and the beaches in Homer. The peaceful, calm water surrounded my the majestic mountains was inspirational.
The wildlife in Homer was amazing. Whales, eagles, puffins, otters, sea lions, moose, fish - oh my.
The boys even got to experience Alaska fishing while we were in Homer. After a day on the water, they had caught their limit in salmon, rock fish and cod.
The day that we arrived back at home from our vacation, we had 64 pounds of the frozen fish that the guys had caught in Homer, delivered to our front door. Best tasting souvenir EVER!
We've been enjoying our fish every week since our trip. This week I took out a package of cod and grilled it for dinner. Every time we eat our Alaska fish, we reminisce about out wonderful trip.
1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon herbs d'province
1 pound cod
Place skewers on hot grill and cook until opaque and cooked through.
Remove from grill.
Serve with salad and roll.
The best pictures of Homer were of my sweet senior. We hired a photographer to take her senior pictures while we were in Homer are they turned out AMAZING.
If you ever find yourself in Alaska - I highly recommend stopping by Homer. With any luck - you'll run into me while you're there.
Missing my boy a little more than usual today. We moved Ryan back to school last weekend and I can't help but feeling like there's a piece of the Davis puzzle missing.
Call me crazy but it makes me feel better to send Ryan to school with a few dinners to put in his freezer so I started cooking some "Ryan meals" last week. One of the things that I made was meatballs.
He can add the meatballs to a jar of marinara sauce for some quick and easy protein on pasta night or eat them on a sandwich. Meatball subs make a great quick and easy dinner - perfect for soccer practice nights.
Turkey Meatball Subs
8 ounces ground turkey breast
1/4 cup parsley
3 Tablespoons panko
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup marinara sauce
1/4 cup water
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 slices provolone cheese
Combine turkey, parsley, panko, lemon zest, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, egg, garlic and olive oil.
Divide mixture into 24 pieces and place on a greased rack on top of a foil lined baking sheet.
Slice baguettes into subs sized pieces.
Place 3-4 meatballs on each roll. Top with provolone cheese and place back in the oven until cheese melts.
Sending a child off to college is never easy but we could not be more proud of the way that he is choosing to live his life. He makes us proud every single day.
It's Meatless Monday!!! Yea!!
I do recognize that there are a lot of my readers who still have yet to embrace the idea of meatless Monday. I for one, love the idea of eating a meal without meat but I sympathize with the carnivores, because I live with a girl who absolutely does not see the point in eating a meatless meal. Even though I look forward to our meatless meals, and I feel completely full and satisfied when it's over, I still look across the table to see the disappointment on the face of my meat-loving girl.
I do try and make our meatless meals interesting and exciting to try and win her over and the best way to get her to ignore the fact that there is no meat on the table is to offer carbohydrates.
Tonight I cooked a delicious fish dinner for Ben and I and the Cheese and Butter Fettuccini side dish became a main dish for my meat-loving girl. Even though there was no meat on the table tonight, this meal was a big hit with ALL of us.
This fettuccini is simple - just as side dishes should be. It's quick and easy to put together and it's delicious - as a side OR as a main course.
Cheese and Butter Fettuccini
1/2 pound fettuccini
1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/2 cup pasta water
2 1/2 Tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
Toss vigorously. Cover and let sit for 1 minute. Toss again and serve.
I served mine with a Cesar salad and a ciabatta roll.
There you have it - proof that you don't have to cook tofu or even fish to enjoy a delicious meatless meal. This Cheese and Butter Fettuccini is exactly what my girl needed to fuel her for a night of soccer practice. (Maybe someday my carnivore will actually look forward to Meatless Monday. A girl can dream, right?)
I've been a proud resident of the "Peach State" for 11 years so it's only natural that I've started perfecting my peach recipes.
Peach Cobbler, Peach Pie, Peach Shortcakes - I've tasted and baked them all. The newest addition to my peach recipe collection is a Peach Cobbler Cupcake. (Why not combine my love of this delicious, juicy fruit with my passion for cupcakes?)
I debated for a while about what to top my scrumptious peach cobbler cupcake with. So many options, whipped cream, cream cheese, cinnamon buttercream or a simple scoop of vanilla ice cream? I finally settled on a swirl of cinnamon buttercream.
Peach Cobbler Cupcakes
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
2 t. vanilla
2 1/2 c. flour
1 1/3 c. whole milk
2 peaches, cut into small pieces
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Combine dry ingredients. Add to batter, alternating with milk.
Scoop batter into paper lined cupcake pan.
Add a spoonful of peaches to the center of each cupcake and press in with back of spoon.
Bake 22 minutes at 350. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
Frost with cinnamon buttercream. (Swiss meringue buttercream with a 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon stirred in.)
I've heard that there are far more peaches harvested from North and South Carolina than ever come from Georgia which just proves that you don't have to live in the Peach State to enjoy the finest peaches of the season. Now is the perfect time to whip up a batch of these yummy peach cobbler cupcakes.
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