provreviewsandrecipes

Food Blog with delicious recipes and also reviews of Providence, RI restuarants

Shrimp Fra Diavolo May 20, 2013

Shrimp Fra DiavloNow I love spicy. This recipe was near my limit for spiciness but I enjoyed each and every mouthful that I shoved as quickly as possible into my mouth. I would say that I inhaled my first and second bowlful of this delicious dish. Now with that being said if you do not like spicy or enjoy a more milder taste, please use 1/4 of the recommended crushed red pepper flakes I have listed below. This dish is quick and easy to make. I like to serve mine with pieces of crusty bread to dip in the sauce and soak up all the delicious goodness that may have been left in the bowl. But serving it with rice or pasta would work as well. I like enjoying this with a glass of wine, usually some from the same bottle I used in cooking this dish, on a warm spring evening with the windows open and enjoying the fresh air blowing in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prep: 18 minutes

Cooking Time: 19 minutes

Total Time: 37 minutes

Servings: 6 adults as a main dish

Recipe:

1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil

1 cup of white wine

2 Tablespoons of unsalted butter

1 pound of medium shrimp, shelled and deveined

1 Large Yellow onion, thinly sliced

6 cloves of garlic, diced

1 16 ounce can of diced tomatoes

1 1/2 cups of vegetable broth

3 Tablespoons of crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 Tablespoon of salt

1/2 Tablespoon of black pepper

1/2 Tablespoon of Old Bay Seasoning

Directions:

Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add butter and half of the crushed red pepper flakes. Once butter has melted add onions and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes, but make sure the garlic does not brown. Add the white wine and tomatoes, salt, pepper, remaining half of the crushed red pepper flakes and old bay seasoning. Cook for 7 minutes. Finally add the vegetable broth and shrimp. Cook for 7 minutes longer or until the shrimp is just pink and cooked through. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Make sure to serve with some crusty bread, rice or pasta. That is if you can make it that far without succumbing like I have before with this dish and just start dipping pieces of bread right into the warm pot and devour while standing over the stove top.

Buon appetito from my kitchen to yours.

 

My Top 5 Weekly Round Up of Articles I Enjoyed This Past Week April 7, 2013

newspaperSo I try and read a lot of articles from many different sources and on a wide range of topics. Since this is a food blog I’ve decided to include my top 5 that I enjoyed or caught my attention from the past week. Check them out and let me know what you think. The articles that I’ve listed below are in no particular order.

Here’s one that I thoroughly enjoyed from the greatist.com. I have been trying to be conscious myself and to incorporate more vegetarian dishes into my weekly diet. Now that the weather is warming up I cannot wait to taste all the fresh fruit and veggies that will be available at my local farmer’s market. The reason why I like this article is that not only does it talk about different types of alternative proteins but it gives a description of each, storage tips and preparation methods. But one thing that really sold me on the article was all the recipes that were linked to the article for each of the proteins mentioned. Now I am familiar with almost all of the proteins but was unfamiliar to Natto until reading this article. Natto is derived from fermented soybeans and I am going to be looking for it on my next trip to the Asian market by my house. Make sure to check out this article as it will inspire you to try some meat alternative proteins.

http://greatist.com/health/7-alternative-proteins-meatless-mondays/

Now the next article that I enjoyed this week comes from saveur.com and  has to do with a martini. The ‘St. Dill Martini’ to be exact. Now I love extra dirty martinis on occasion. They are my favorite thing to treat myself to one when out for a drink with friends. Now when I stumbled across this article I was thoroughly delighted at the prospect of having a new martini to try. Not to mention I love pickles and dill. The recipe ingredients contain vodka, mustard seeds, a fresh sprig of dill, pickle juice and speared kosher dill pickle. That all together sounds interesting and delicious in my opinion. I am going to be making this drink this upcoming weekend. Make sure to check this one out.

http://www.saveur.com/article/Wine-and-Drink/Friday-Cocktails-St-Dill-Martini

This articles comes from bonappetit.com. It make me chuckle at the way it was written but also slightly jealous at the jobs that not only these people left but now the cool jobs that they have obtained at different publications relating to very specific food topics. Maybe I need to become the go to person on a very specific area of the food world. Hmmm…..Well anyways I also liked this article as it talks about New York Systems that is an institution here in Rhode Island. They have two locations one in Olneyville and the other location is around the corner from my apartment on Smith Street in Providence, RI. I have gone once or twice for a late night fix. Check out the article and maybe you didn’t realize that you may be able to parlay your life of a specific type/area of food into a job.

http://www.bonappetit.com/blogsandforums/blogs/badaily/2013/03/barbecue-editor-texas-monthly.html

Dry age beef. Most of us have at it at some point and I have personally enjoyed it. Now when I see that dry aged beef at the meat counter at my local grocery store I am always tempted to buy it but cannot justify the cost. This particular article comes from www.seriouseats.com and talks about dry age beef in general, what the process is and how it affects the meat. Finally it talks about how to do this process at home and give very specific instructions and pictures. This article intrigued me and I don’t know if I have the proper setup, time or local butcher to provide me with the cuts of beef needed, but now I am tempted to try to dry age beef at home. Check out this article. Has anyone tried to dry age beef at home with success like this article indicates you will if you follow the instructions?

http://www.seriouseats.com/2013/03/the-food-lab-complete-guide-to-dry-aging-beef-at-home.html?ref=pop_serious_eats

The final article that I enjoyed this week comes from a fellow food blogger, http://cookingstoned.tv/.  I saw the title of the recipe in this article ‘Chocolate & Balsamic Roasted Beets’ and was immediately intrigued. The recipe sounds delicious and I cannot wait to personally try it this upcoming week. I had never thought of combining beets, balsamic vinegar and chocolate. Now I like the nice, clear and easy instructions in the article for making the recipe, but what makes it one of my favorites is that the author of the blog, Jerry James Stone, includes a video of himself making the recipe. I found the video great. I am now a fan of his blog and will be perusing the rest of it and wanted to make sure that I shared this gem with others. Make sure that you check out this recipe and the rest of this great blog.

http://cookingstoned.tv/recipe/chocolate-balsamic-roasted-beets/

 

Halibut with Pea and Ricotta Sauce April 6, 2013

fish and ricotta pureeSo I made this delicious recipe a few months ago and kept forgetting to post it. My fiancee can be kind of picky when it comes to fish but this recipe was a big hit with both of us. It is a quick and simple dish to put together on a busy week night. Its also very healthy. Now that the weather in New England is starting to warm up, all I want to enjoy is the warm weather with some delicious seafood. Now I bought organic carrots for this recipe because I did not feel like having to peel them. If you do not buy organic, which by no means you have to, then I would peel the carrots. I also served mine with some roasted chickpeas that I had made, but this would be fine served all by itself or served with rice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:

1 Bunch of Carrots, cut in half lengthwise

1 Large Red Onion, sliced very thinly

1 Lemon, juiced

1 Pound of Halibut Fillets, cut into 4 pieces

4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

1/2 Teaspoon of Paprika

1/2 Teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes

2 Cloves of Garlic, finely diced

2 Tablespoons of Salt

2 Tablespoons of Black Pepper

1 Package of Frozen Peas, 10 ounces

2 Tablespoons of unsalted butter

5 Ounces of Ricotta Cheese, about half of a small container

 

Directions:

Preheat broiler to high.

Take a baking sheet and line it with tin foil. Place the baking sheet in the oven and heat the pan for 5 minutes.

While the pan is heating in the oven, take 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, 1 tablespoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of black pepper, 1/2 the lemon juice, diced garlic and mix together in a bowl. Take the carrots and red onion and place in the bowl with the olive oil mixture and toss to coat all the pieces completely.

Next take the Halibut and brush the top and bottom of each piece with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the remaining lemon juice. Take the remaining tablespoon of salt and black pepper, the paprika and red pepper flakes and mix together in a small bowl. Take the seasoning mixture and sprinkle it over each side of the Halibut pieces.

Remove the baking sheet from pre-heating in the oven. Take the Halibut pieces and arrange in the center and spread the red onion and carrot pieces all around the fish. Place the pan back in the oven and broil for 8-10 minutes. The fish should be evenly cooked through and have a golden brown color to it. Set aside.

Next, combine the frozen peas and 1/4 cup of water in a bowl and microwave 4 minutes. Next take the peas and put in a food processor along with the ricotta cheese, the butter and small pinch of salt. Pulse the mixture until it is evenly blended but still retains a slightly chunky texture.

Finally spread the pea and ricotta sauce evenly on four plates. Place the one of the Halibut pieces on top of the pea and ricotta sauce. Place the carrot and red onion slices next to the fish and enjoy.

Let me know what you think of this recipe. Any suggestions for substitutions, comments or questions I would greatly appreciate and will reply to any and all of them.

 

Creamy Mushroom Crostini Appetizer February 26, 2013

Now I whipped up this recipe the other day as I had extra mushrooms on hand and cream. It came out decadent and delicious. Now I probably ate more than one person should eat of this dish but once I started, I could not stop. I used french bread, but you could use any other type of crusty bread that you prefer. Same thing goes for the mushrooms. I used white mushrooms because of what I had on hand but you could use any kind that you like. I would pair this with a nice lighter main course if serving as an appetizer, like my recipe for .

Prep: 8 MinutesCreamy Mushroom Crostini

Cooking: 21 Minutes

Total Time: 29 Minutes

Makes 4 Servings

Ingredients:

1 Pound of Mushrooms, sliced

2 Cloves of Garlic, diced

2 Cups of Heavy Cream

3 Tablespoons of Unsalted Butter

8 Tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons of Cooking Sherry

1/4 Cup of White Wine

1 Whole Lemon

1/2 Tablespoon of Salt

1/2 Tablespoon of Pepper

1 Teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes

2 Tablespoon of Dried Italian Seasoning

1 Loaf of French Bread, sliced

Directions:

Preheat broiler to high. Put the slices of French bread on a baking sheet covered with tin foil. Take 6 tablespoons of the olive oil and brush both sides of the French bread pieces. Place under broiler and toast until golden on one side, about 3 minutes. Then pull out the baking sheet and flip over all the bread pieces. Place back under broiler until golden brown on the other side. This should only take about 2 minutes. Take out of oven and set aside. Make sure to keep an eye on the bread pieces as they can easily burn.

Now to make the creamy mushroom mixture to go over the now crispy bread. First take the lemon and place it in the microwave for 15 seconds. Take it out and zest half of the lemon. In a small bowl squeeze the juice from the lemon and combine it with the lemon zest. Set the zest and the lemon juice aside. Take 2 Tablespoons of the olive oil and heat in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter and cook until it melts, about 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and cook until nicely browned, about 6-7 minutes. Add in garlic, red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook for an additional 3 minutes. Add in the cooking sherry and cook for 2 minutes. Add the white wine and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Finally add the lemon juice and zest mixture to the pan along with the cream to the pan. Cook just until heated through, about 4 minutes. Make sure to not bring to a boil.

Serve immediately. Place 4 pieces of the crispy bread on a each of the four plates and spoon a generous portion of the creamy mushroom mixture. Trust me this will over any guests that you have over for dinner. Enjoy.

 

Green Juice January 6, 2013

Today I decided to make a Green Juice. I decided to go the non-traditional route on making it. Now the ingredients I put in the juice taste delicious together, but might not be for everyone. The juice has a slight onion taste from the scallions that I added and then has a sweet pineapple finish. Now if you are not a fan of onions, I would omit the scallions.

Green Juice

Here is what I put into the juicer:

3 Large Handfuls of Kale

1/8 of a Cup of Fresh Parsley

1 Cara Cara Navel Orange

1 Cup of Pineapple pieces

3 Stalks of Celery

1 Inch Sliver of Fresh Ginger

Half a Lemon, rind removed

Put all the ingredients in the juicer and voila out comes this delicious juice. I find that by putting the Kale and Parsley in the chute first and then a heavier object like the Navel Orange it helps to make the items move easier through the juicer.

Let me know what your thoughts are about this juice. Would you drink it? Are there any other combinations that you think would be good? Let me know I would love to hear them.

 

This Morning’s Juice January 5, 2013

As I indicated in my previous post, I recently was the recipient of a Breville Juicer as a present. I am now really getting into making juice each morning. This morning I did a quick inventory of my refrigerator and came up with this juice. I did run into a couple of hiccups along the way though. When I pulled the remaining kale out of the veggies drawer, it ripped and the kale spilled all over the floor. After salvaging what I could, I embarked on my next task. I have never before taken the rind off of a lemon. Well let me just say it was difficult, but I finally managed to remove the rind from half of the lemon. The reason why I was doing this is because I have heard that if you leave the rind on the lemon juice will come out bitter. So after all of this I put all the fruits and vegetables into the juicer and out came this delicious juice. Now there was more juice that came out than what I put into my glass as I was saving some for fiancée to have as well.

blackberry juice

 

Here is the list of ingredients that I used:

1 Green Apple (I leave the skin on but some people prefer to take off the skin)

3 Large Handfuls of Kale

1 Pint of Blackberries

Half of a Lemon, Rind Removed

1 Inch Sliver of Lemon

 

Let me know what your thoughts/opinions are. Does anyone have any tips or suggestions about getting the rind off of a lemon with ease?

 

 

Juicing (Not the Steroid Kind) January 3, 2013

breville juicerSo I got a Breville Juicer for Christmas. I had been wanting one for quite some time. Now that I have one I love it and can’t imagine why I never bit the bullet and bought one for myself sooner. Now I have had a couple of not so great juicing experiences. Like the time I decided to try and add random vegetables I had in the refrigerator and see how it came out. Let’s just say the combination of celery, baby spinach, half a cucumber and some radishes had a not very pleasant odor and did not taste that great. Since then I have been scouring the web for ideas of different combinations I could potentially combine. Well I have found that adding fruit makes the juice taste delicious. I made apple juice that I found out if you do not want it to turn my brown you add lemon juice to it. Some of the combinations I have tried are two apples, two oranges, three handfuls of kale and four strawberries. That seems to be my go to as that is what I had on hand this week. It does not look that appealing but it tastes delicious. I also did pomegranate, half a cucumber, an orange and kale and that tasted great as well.
Now since I am new to juicing does anyone have any recommendations on what combinations to try that they enjoy? I have heard that adding a tiny bit of ginger and some herbs like mint and basil taste great as well.Also I have seen a few recipes online where the juicer was used to make salsa and some few kinds of soup. Has anyone done this with any success?