Sunday, July 12, 2009

Cheesecake Factory Cajun Jambalaya Pasta

1/2 tsp. white pepper 1/2 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper 5 quarts water
1 1/2 tsp. salt 6 ounces plain fettuccine
1/2 tsp. paprika 6 ounces spinach fettuccine
1/4 tsp. garlic powder 2 Tbs olive oil
1/4 tsp. onion powder 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 small green bell pepper, sliced 1 Tbs cornstarch
1 small red bell pepper, sliced 2 Tbs cooking white wine
1 small yellow bell pepper, sliced 2 tsp chopped fresh parsley
1 small white onion, sliced

( I happened to have a cajun seasoning blend that I used)

1. Make a cajun seasoning blend by combining the white pepper, cayenne pepper, salt, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder in a small bow.

2. Cut the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces. Use about one-third of the seasoning blend to coat the chicken pieces.

3. In another bowl, sprinkle another one-third of the spice blend over the shrimp.

4. Start your pasta cooking by bringing 5 quarts of water to a boil over high heat. Add both fettuccines to the hot water, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 12 to 14 minutes or until the pasta is tender.

5. While the fettuccine cooks, heat 1 Tbs of the olive oil in a large frying pan or skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot, saute the chicken in the pan for about 2 minutes per side or until the surface of the chicken starts to turn brown.

6. Add the shrimp to the pan with the chicken and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the shrimp from sticking. When the chicken and shrimp have been seared, pour the contents of the pan onto a plate or into a bowl. Do not rinse the pan!

7. Put the pan back over the high heat and add the remaining Tbs of oil to the pan. Add the tomatoes, peppers, and onion to the oil. Sprinkle the veggies with the remaining spice blend and saute for about 10 minutes or until the vegetables begin to turn dark brown or black. (I didn't let them turn black)

8. Add the chicken and shrimp to the vegetables and pour 3/4 cup of the chicken stock in the pan. Cook over high heat until stock has been reduced to just about nothing. Add the remaining 3/4 cup of the stock to the pan. The liquid should become dark as it deglazes the pan of the dark film left by the spices and cooking food. Stir constantly, scraping the blackened stuff on the bottom of the pan. Reduce the broth a bit more, then turn the heat down to low.

9. Combine the cornstarch with the wine (or more broth) in a small bowl. Stir until it is dissolved. Add this to the pan and simmer over low heat until the sauce thickens slightly.

10. When the fettuccine is done, drain it and spoon half onto a plate. Spoon half of the jambalaya over the fettuccine. Sprinkle half of the parsley over the top. Repeat for the second serving.

(this made 4 servings for us) and fyi this is now your father's favorite meal!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Lime-and-Honey Glazed Salmon with Warm Black Bean and Corn Salad

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
juice of 2 limes
3 tablespoons of honey
1 teaspoon chili powder
4 6-ounce salmon fillets
1 red pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped
1 10-ounce box frozen corn kernels, defrosted
1/2 cup chicken stock or broth
1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, (a handful), chopped
6 cups baby spinach

Preheat a medium skillet over medium heat with 2 tablespoons of the EVOO. Add the onions, garlic, red pepper flakes, cumin salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. While the onions are cooking, preheat a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat with the remaining 2 tablespoons of EVOO. In a shallow dish, combine the juice of 1 lime, honey, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Add the salmon fillets to the lime-honey mixture and toss to coat thoroughly. Add the seasoned salmon to the hot skillet and cook until just cooked through, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
To the cooked onions, add the bell peppers and corn kernels and cook for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and continue to cook for another 2 minutes. Add the black beans and cook until the beans are just heated through. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the juice of the second lime, the cilantro, and spinach. Toss to wilt the spinach and then taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the lime-and-honey-glazed salmon on top of the warm black bean and corn salad.
4 servings.
(You can serve the spinach salad alone as leftovers with something else if you like. If you don't want the spinach to wilt too much for leftovers divide the mixture before adding the spinach and only add half, then you can add the spinach the next day after heating the beans, it is good cold as well)