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Another hit from my New Years Eve Party.

Ingredients…

2 lbs (16/20 count) shrimp, peeled and devained

2 cups panko breadcrumbs

1 cup shredded coconut

3 eggs

¼ cup milk

2 cups flour

Canola oil for frying

Salt / Pepper

Honey

Dijon mustard

Directions…

Set up a breading station by mixing together the following ingredients. Bowl 1: Flour, salt and pepper. Bowl 2: Eggs, milk, salt and pepper (beat together). Bowl 3: Coconut, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Start by dipping the shrimp in the flour mixture, then egg mixture (drip off excess), then into the breadcrumb mixture. Continue process until they are all breaded. I found if you put them on a cookie sheet in a single layer and refrigerate them for about an hour, it will help the breading stay in tact while frying. This is not an essential step, but is helpful if you have the time.

In a medium saucepan with steep sides, add about ½ inch of canola oil. Heat on medium high heat. Add the shrimp about 5 at a time to the oil. Try not to over crowd the pan. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined dish to drain the oil. Continue in batches until all the shrimp are fried.

Mix equal parts honey and Dijon mustard together for a dipping sauce. Depending on your taste, you may want to add more honey if you want it sweeter, or more mustard if you want it to have more of a tang.

This was part of my New Year’s Eve menu and it was a HIT. Enjoy!

Ingredients….

Premade pizza dough (you can get it in the dairy aisle of your grocery store or local pizza shop)

1 green pepper, sliced

½ yellow onion, sliced

3 sausage links, out of casing

oregano

crushed red pepper flakes

olive oil

handful pecorino romano cheese (grated)

flour

Directions…

Bring pizza dough to room temperature. Leave it out of the fridge for at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 425. In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, heat a teaspoon of olive oil. Add sausage to pan and break up with a wooden spoon. Cook until brown and crumbled. Remove from pan with slotted spoon, reserve on a plate. Pour out most of the oil. Add the sliced peppers, onions, oregano and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for about 8 minutes until the veggies are tender.

Roll dough with a little bit of flour into a large rectangle. Place on a lightly oiled cookie sheet (with sides). Add filling on half of the dough (long side), leaving a one inch space on the top and bottom. Begin rolling, starting on the side the filling is on. Keep rolling until you have a log shape. Seal off the edges by pinching them and folding them under the roll. Brush the top with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with the cheese. Cut 3 slits in the top to let the steam escape. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Slice and serve.


It’s that time of year again. The holiday season is rapidly approaching which means busy times and plenty of food to go around!

I have found that Bon Appetit has the best Thanksgiving guide around. Check it out here – They have everything from the best turkey recipes to sides and appetizers. Highly recommend this site.

What are all of you making for Thanksgiving? What are your favorites? Feel free to post some winners here!

My favorite is my grandmothers Sausage Stuffing…but sorry, it’s a family secret!

eggplantI have so many yummy veggies left from the farm, so I decided to make a great caponata to use them up. I used a Tyler Florence recipe and adapted it to use up what I had in the fridge.

This is delicious warm, cold or room temperature. Sever on toasted bread as an appetizer, mix with pasta or serve with chicken or fish for an easy dinner. This is a very versatile dish…and yummy too!

Ingredients…

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

dash of red pepper flakes

1 large eggplant, cubed

1 zucchini cubed

2 ribs of celery cubed

2 tomatoes, halved and seeds squeezed out, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 medium red onion, chopped

3 tablespoons capers, drained

1/2 cup pitted kalamata and green olives

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

pinch sugar

handful of torn fresh basil

salt and pepper

Directions…

Pour the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Fry the eggplant in the oil. Add red pepper flakes. Cook until brown, be sure to stir often. Add the tomatoes, red pepper, zucchini, celery and onion cook for about 15 minutes until the veggies are soft. Add the capers, olives, balsamic vinegar, sugar, basil, salt and pepper. Lower the heat and slowly simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes until thickened.

Going to a BBQ this weekend and need a super easy appetizer? Here are two that I love!

Apple and Manchego

2 Fuji apples

hunk of manchego cheese

good honey

toothpics

Slice the apple. Shave Manchego cheese with a vegetable peeler or cheese slicer. Place shaved cheese on top of apple wedge and drizzle with honey. Secure each nibble with a toothpick.

Bruschetta

4 vine ripe tomatoes

1 ball of fresh mozzarella

handful of fresh basil

1/4 of a red onion finely chopped (I use my Cuisinart mini-chopper)

1 loaf of good bread (like a baguette from Balthazar)

Olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 425. In the mean time, dice tomatoes and mozzarella to about the same size (I make little cubes). Toss with finely chopped onion, torn basil, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. The mixture should not be soupy. The vinegar and oil are just to coat the ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Slice the bread into 1/4 inch slices. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper. Toast bread until golden brown. Serve along side bruschetta. Guests can spoon the mixture on top of bread slices and enjoy!

Don’t forget about my roasted red pepper dip…this is great for a BBQ too!

photo(2)

I made this dip this weekend for a family BBQ and it was a hit! Everyone has been requesting the recipe…so here it is! Serve with the pita chips below or with sliced veggies. Either way, it’s addictive and just delicious!

Roasted Red Pepper Dip

1 jar of drained roasted red peppers

1 small container of marscapone cheese

big handful of parsley

1 tbsp capers

juice of a 1/2 of lemon

salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil

Put all of the ingredients into a food processor. I love my Cuisinart mini-chopper for this job! Pulse until everything is mixed and to your desired consistency. I like to leave the dip with a little texture.

Pita Chips for dipping

Whole grain flatbread sliced into wedges

Olive oil

Cumin

Coriander

Salt and Pepper

Lay the pita wedges on a baking pan. Drizzle with olive oil. Add salt and pepper. Sprinkle a pinch of the cumin and coriander on each wedge. Bake at 400 until golden brown.

About Me

My name is Ashley and I'm a self taught cook. Getting home from work, popping open a bottle of wine and cooking up dinner with my boyfriend is my favorite part of the day. I want to show you that making dinner can be fun and easy. I have some great tricks for the young professional...like me, that I know you will love! Follow me and I'll make you the talk of all of your friends! You won't believe the things you can whip up in the kitchen that are...Just Delicious!

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