Shrimp Scampi over Pappardelle Pasta

First and foremost, I want to take a few moments to thank my friends, family, and other visitors of the site for taking the time to check out my blog. I love receiving messages, comments, and random texts of food from friends who have been inspired by this blog. It means so so much to me.

I originally started this because I’ve always wanted a place to keep my recipes. I’ve tried apps like Evernote or simply Microsoft Word but none of which are as engaging and limitless with sharing capabilities. Whether you love or hate to cook, thanks for being a part of this blog 🙂 Please continue to send messages or comment below for recipes you’d like to see in the future.

With that being said, let’s dive in, literally, to this delicious shrimp scampi recipe. I like shrimp scampi over pasta (pappardelle because it’s light). Other versions of this could be over whole wheat spaghetti, gluten free spaghetti (best absorbent of the sauce), brown/white rice, or simply by itself. Pair this with a buttery Chardonnay to bring out the hints of creamy butter, oil, and garlic.

This recipe takes a total of 15 minutes to make (including the time it takes to cook the pasta)

Recipe makes 2 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb (1/2 box) of pasta of your choice
  • 10 large raw peeled and deveined shrimp
  • 2 Tbsp minced or fresh garlic
  • 1/2 chopped yellow onion
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • Salt, Pepper, & Hot Red Pepper Flakes to taste
  • 1/4 cup of chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp white wine
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • *Optional: 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese & chopped parsley for garnish
  • 1 large pot for boiling water, 1 large sauce pan

Recipe:

  1. Cook pasta according to the package and drain. Set aside.
  2. While pasta is cooking, in the large pan, melt butter and oil on medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes or until you start to smell the aroma.
  3. Add shrimp to garlic & onion and cook until pink (turn them over 4 minutes into cooking).
  4. Add salt, pepper, hot pepper flakes and stir
  5. Add chicken broth, wine, lemon juice, lemon zest, 1/2 the parm cheese. Simmer on medium-high heat until reduced by half.
  6. Once the sauce is reduced, pour over drained pasta, and serve with a sprinkle of Parm cheese & parsley.

Pair with a buttery Chardonnay.

Happy Eating 🙂

30min Chicken Pot Pie

I crave chicken pot pie whenever it’s cold outside. But not any old chicken pot pie, HOMEMADE chicken pot pie with a flakey crust. This recipe includes a quick alternative to a homemade pie crust to make in a pinch during the week. If you’d like to make homemade pie crust instead, click here for a easy recipe. Don’t forget to make a bottom AND a top.

Some “quick” chicken pot pie recipes use chicken soup and frozen veggies for the filling of the pie. I tried this once and will never make it again. It tasted really salty and watered down. My recipe will show you how EASY it is to make your own pie filling and you’ll really be able to tell the difference in taste.

Recipe makes 2, 9 inch pies

Ingredients for pie:

  •  1 lb of raw chopped skinless chicken breast
  • 1 cup of sliced carrots
  • 1 cup of frozen peas
  • 1 cup of frozen corn
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of celery seed
  • 1/3 cup of butter
  • 1/3 cup of flour
  • 1 3/4 cup of chicken broth
  • 2/3 cup of milk
  • 2 non-stick 9inch pie pans
  • 1 large sauce pan, 1 small sauce pan

Ingredients for pie:

  • 2 cup of Bisquick
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 2 eggs

or

OR

  • Pillsbury buttermilk biscuits

Recipe:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Combine chicken, carrots, celery, peas, and corn in the large sauce pan. Cover with water, bring to a simmer, and simmer for 15 minutes. Drain, and set aside.
  3. In the small sauce pan, on medium heat, add the butter and onion over medium heat. Once the onion turns translucent, stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Stir until thickened (about 5 min).
  4. Split the chicken mixture, from step 1, between the two pie pans. Then, evenly distribute the mixture from step 2 between the two pies.
  5. Combine and whisk Bisquick with milk and eggs. Evenly distribute the mixture between the two pies. Make sure you really layer it on to create a biscuit like crust.  *If you’re using biscuits, assort them on top of the pie so that they are all touching.
  6. Put both pies in the oven for 30 minutes or until the crust is puffed up and flakey brown. Remove and serve

B2

Happy Eating 🙂 xo

Citrus Steamed Tilapia

This week, I saw a Facebook post asking for a weekday recipe that’s quick to whip up. Citrus Steamed Tilapia immediately came to mind. It’s fresh, both light and filling, and packs some seriously delicious flavors. Inspiration? My mother of course.

I remember in college I was on the phone with her while in the grocery store and couldn’t figure out for the life of me what I wanted to make for dinner that night. I was all out of “inspiration” and wasn’t in the mood for really anything. All I knew is that I wanted something healthy, refreshing, and I didn’t have a lot of time. She immediately fired back with this recipe that I will forever use in a time-crunch. Oh, did I mention it has 4 ingredients?

Also, Tilapia isn’t a very smelly fish (like Salmon), meaning you can bring this dish to work when it’s cold and it won’t smell up the office.

Makes 2-3 servings. Takes 10 minutes to make.

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 Tilapia Filets
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 1 medium pan with a lid

ingredients

*Note: I only bought 1 filet – totaling $2.60

Recipe:

  1. Halve each fruit and squeeze the juice from each fruit into the pan.
  2. Turn on the stovetop and add fish to the pan. Feel free to add the remaining juiced fruit to the pan.
  3. Cover and steam for 5 minutes
  4. Top with lemon zest, dill, and sauce from the pan

tilapia

I paired this with a side of spinach. What you see in the picture, is half a bag of spinach.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 bag of spinach
  • 1/2 TBSP butter
  • 1 TBSP minced garlic

Recipe:

  1. Melt butter and garlic in a pan until bubbling. Add half a bag of spinach to the pan and stir until wilted.

FINITO!

 

KruseKooking

Happy and Healthy Eating everyone 🙂 xo

Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers are one of my favorite weekend dishes to make. They are really easy, straightforward, and perfect to bring leftovers to work because the stuffing is even better the next day. I like to make my stuffed peppers with lamb or ground turkey. I usually opt for lamb because rosemary, lamb, and feta just go so well together.

Makes 3-4 stuffed peppers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pack of ground lamb or ground turkey
  • 1 chopped yellow onion
  • 1 chopped green pepper
  • 1 cup of frozen peas
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 can of drained diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 jalepeno
  • 1/2 cup of chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 TBSP of chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 TBSP dried oregano
  • 1 TBSP dried basil
  • 1 cup of long grain rice
  • 1 large pot of boiling water, 1 medium size pan, 1 large size pan, 1 baking tray

Recipe:

  1. Turn oven on to 350 degrees
  2. Cut the tops of the lids off of the peppers and remove seeds and membranes.
  3. In a large pot, boil water and add peppers. Cover lid and let boil until fork tender. You want them to remain a little stiff for when you finish them in the oven later.
  4. Once the peppers are finished, drain and set aside. Boil water again and cook rice.
  5. While rice is cooking, in the medium pan, add ground lamb and cook until cooked all the way through.
  6. In a large size pan, heat olive oil and add the chopped green pepper and let cook for 5-8 minutes. Add spices (cilantro, rosemary, oregano, basil, salt&pepper to taste). Add the onion and stir until translucent.
    Pepper1
  7. Add the cooked lamb to the pan, along with the diced tomatoes, and feta cheese. Stir to combine
    pepper3
  8. Once the rice is done cooking, drain, and add to the large pan. Stir to combine.
  9. Turn off heat, and stuff each pepper with mixture from the large pan. Put each pepper on a lined baking tray or deep dish. Place the top of the pepper, which was removed, on each pepper and cover the dish with tinfoil. Bake for 10 minutes in 350 degrees oven.
  10. Remove from heat and serve with a side of extra “stuffing” from the large pan.

HAPPY EATING! 🙂 XO

Presto, Pesto!

Pesto is incredibly easy to make and lasts over a week in your refrigerator. You do, however, need a food processor. I’ve put together my pesto guide that I adhere to, acquired by Food Network.

You can vary you’re ingredients to your liking with this simple step by step guide. This guide makes 1 cup of pesto.

pesto

  1. CHOOSE YOUR NUT OR SEED. Toast 1/4 cup of nuts or seeds in a dry skillet. Let cool. Pulse in a food processor until finely ground
  2. CHOOSE YOUR BASE (choose 3). Choose up to 3 cups of desired greens. Feel free to mix it up. I like Basil and Arugula
  3. CHOOSE YOUR SEASONING(choose 3). Add 1/2 – 1 tsp of your desired ingredients to processor.
  4. PICK A CHEESE. Grate 1/2 cup and add. Pulse to combine
  5. PRESTO PESTO. Slowly pour 1/2 cup of olive oil, pulsing to incorporate. Add 1/2 cup of the following tomatoes *optional. I looove sundried tomatoes in mine. This recipe makes about 1 cup of pesto.

**TIP: freeze your pesto in an ice cube tray for up to 3 months. Add to a hot pan (allow it to melt, do not cook it) with pasta for a 10 minute meal. 

Top 5 Knives to keep handy in your kitchen

Best Knives to keep handy

Having the proper knives to cut ingredients is essential when cooking. Here, I’ll go through the 5 best knives to keep in your kitchen.

Chopping Knife

Chopping Knife

–          This bad boy is the ultimate knife to keep on hand. I like to keep a medium and a small size chopping knife. Anything larger is just ridiculous and unnecessary unless you’re in a professional kitchen. Use it to chop/cut anything.

Filet knife

filet

–          Great for cutting open chicken or fish to stuff them.  Also really helps when removing skin from fruits like pineapples or mangos.

Bread knife

breadknife

–          Bread knives are seriated and long. They keep bread from being hacked at when cut.

  • **Tip: When you buy an entire loaf of bread but can’t finish it, cut the loaf and freeze the slices so they are easy to take out and toast whenever you’d like.

Paring Knife

paring

–          This is a small knife with a plain edge which is used for more intricate cutting. Such as removing skin from shrimp, taking seeds out of a jalapeño, cutting mushrooms…

Cheese knife

cheese knife

–          If you’re a cheese lover like me, a cheese knife is a wonderful little tool to keep on hand. It REALLY does make a difference when cutting cheese with a cheese knife versus any old knife.

**Note- you only need to sharpen your knives maybe once or twice a month. Don’t over sharpen or with one little slip, you’ll slice the tip of your finger off.

Chicken Caprese

Chicken Caprese is a quicker, healthier option to Chicken Parmesan. Now don’t get me wrong, I love me some Chicken Parma, but when it’s during the week I opt for a quick , easy, and yummy dish. Also one that’s easy to bring to work for leftovers. It also has very few ingredients that are likely already in your refrigerator or pantry.

Makes 2-3 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 skinless chicken breasts
  • 1-2 pts of halved cherry tomatoes
  • 10 large basil leaves, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 cup Mozzarella cheese or 2-3 slices of buffalo Mozararella cheese (a block or shredded will do)
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • balsamic vinegar to taste
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 small-medium sauce pan & 1 large sauce pan

Recipe:

  1. Salt and pepper both sides of the raw chicken and set aside
  2. In the large sauce pan, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil. Add chicken and cover until cooked thoroughly. Remember to flip them occasionally.
  3. While chicken is cooking, in the sm-med sauce pan heat 1 tbsp of oil. Add garlic and cooked, while stirring, for about 1 minute or until the garlic becomes fragrant (about 1 min). Add tomatoes and stir until tomatoes start to wrinkle. Turn off heat, stir in chopped basil.
  4. Once the chicken is cooked, top with Mozzarella cheese, pour tomato mixture over the chicken and cover to let the cheese melt (about 1-2 min). Drizzle balsamic vinegar over chicken and serve.

Happy Eating 🙂 xo

 

Chicken Taco Bowls

Don’t let the cute little tortilla bowl fool you, these taco bowls are SO quick, easy, and cheap to make. I fortunately have tortilla bowl pans. An alternative to these pans, would be to drape a tortilla over an overturned bowl that’s been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray and bake at 375 degrees for no more than 8 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pack of ground chicken (you can use ground turkey, beef, or tofu if you’d like)
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 can of no salt added corn
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 chopped jalapeno
  • 1 packet of Fajita seasoning (if you’d like to make it homemade, click here)
  • 1 pack of soft four Tortillas (NOT corn)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 sauce pans, one medium/large and one small

*Optional add ins: black olives, avocado, cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, sour cream,

Recipe:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drape tortillas over an overturned oven safe bowl that’s been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Cook tortilla bowls in oven for no more than 8 minutes, or until the edges start to brown
  2. While tortillas are baking, in the small sauce pan, add 2 tbsp olive oil. Add chopped green pepper and sautee for 5-8 minutes until almost fork tender. Add in chopped onions, stir to combine and cook until translucent. Add corn, tomatoes, black beans, jalapeno and olives.
  3. In medium/large sauce pan, add 1 Tbsp olive oil and add ground chicken. Cook until chicken turns all white.
  4. Add fajita seasoning packet and follow directions on the packet (some call for 1/4 cup of water to help simmer the seasoning into the chicken).(DON’T FORGET TO TAKE OUT TORTILLA BOWLS)
  5. Once fajita seasoning covers the all chicken, add your ingredients from the small sauce pan. Stir to combine. Scoop into Tortilla bowl and add any optional add ins (i.e sour cream, cheese, avocado).

In the picture, I sliced half an avocado and seasoned with salt & pepper. I like avocado as a substitute for sour cream, healthier and filled with good fats. On the side are southwestern Tortilla chips.

 

 

KruseKooking

Happy Eating 🙂 xo

Pantry Must Haves

Question

I thought it’d be informative if I put together a list of pantry must haves. If you’re just starting out cooking for yourself, or if you’ve been cooking for years, it’s great to familiarize yourself with  products and spices you should keep in your pantry or cupboards that go in the majority of dishes. Wherever I’ve lived, abroad/college/post grad, I’ve always kept these in stock in my pantry/cupboard.

Pantry:

  • Olive Oil– used for sauteing and it’s a healthier substitute then using butter
  • Vegetable oil – for frying and an alternative for sauteeing veggies when out of olive oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar – used in making sauces or a quick homemade dressing w/ oil, salt & pepper
  • Peanut Butter
  • Cans of diced tomatoes- never know when you’d like to throw into a stir fry, chilli, or sauce
  • Tahini – for the hummus lover
  • Panko or regular bread crumbs– for breading chicken or fish
  • Pasta – whatever kind you like to use the most. I like gluten free spaghetti , bow ties, and rigatoni
  • Brown or white rice 
  • Cous Cous
  • Honey
  • Black Olives – just because I put them in just about every salad or taco dish I make
  • Crackers or Triscuts – to put with cheese for a quick snack
  • Soy Sauce – stir frys and sauces, marinating
  • Teriyaki Sauce – stir frys, sauces, marinating
  • Dried Cranberries and raisins – for salads
  • Peanuts and almonds – great finishers on dishes
  • Non – Stick cooking spray- for all you bakers out there
  • White & Brown Sugar
  • Flour
  • Baking Powder & Baking Soda
  • Crisco
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Chocolate chips – never know when the craving for chocolate chip cookies will sneak up on you

Spices:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Hot Pepper Flakes
  • Ground Ginger
  • Ground mustard
  • Dried Basil
  • Dried Oregano or an italian blend of spices
  • Chilli Powder
  • Paprika
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Curry Powder 
  • Thyme Leaves
  • Cinnamon
  • Rosemary
  • Bay Leaves
  • Dill Weed – I like to drizzle olive oil, dill weed, and salt/pepper on fresh veggies in the summer
  • Sesame Seeds
  • **Old Bay – which can go on literally anything as a rub (chicken, beef, fish, popcorn, eggs…ok I’ll stop)

**- an obsession in my spice cabinet.

Click on the tags below to see what other dishes I use these ingredients in.

 

 

What are your favorite pantry must haves? Comment below or send me a message 🙂 Happy Eating!

 

Seafood Paella

Happy New Year! I’ve been meaning to post this recipe but winter break got in the way of my motivation. I made this dish while visiting my parents in CT. Fortunately, my mother had a paella pan to cook this dish in. The following paella recipe serves 4, and for best results cook in a 14 or 15-inch paellera. A large shallow frying pan will do as well. Read through all ingredients & steps before making so you have a picture of the dish before starting. I’ve broken down the steps into categories of what you’ll be eventually adding in/on to each step until completion.

Serves 4-5, Cook time 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of flat leaf parsley
  • 2 ripe tomatoes OR cup of canned tomatoes mashed with a fork
  • 16 raw shrimp (peeled)
  • Cut 2 squid tubes into rings
  • 12 fresh (srubbed and debearded) mussels
  • 1 1/2 cups of Spanish rice (yellow kind)
  • 3-4 cups of chicken or fish stock
  • 1/2 cup of water or dry white wine (I use whatever I have laying around, no preference)
  • 2 tsps of paprika OR Spanish paprika
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4-5 tabelspoons of olive oil
  • **Optional : 2 sausage links of either Chorizo or Kielbasa sausage

Recipe:

  1. PREP. Chop/prepare all your veggies (onion, garlic, peppers, parsley) and have them organized in separate bowls to have ready at hand when adding ingredients. If you’d like to use sausage, cook these links first and remove from pan with a slotted spoon. Also, be sure to prep your fish- i.e cut squid into rings, clean and debeard mussels, peel and devine raw shrimp.
  2. SOFRITO. Sofrito is a Spanish tomato and Onion sauce which used as a flavor base for many dishes. To make the sofrito, heat 2 Tbsps of oil in the paella pan over medium heat and cook the red onion, parsley, and 3 cloves of chopped garlic (remaining garlic you add in step 4) for about 8 minutes. Add pureed tomatoes and Paprika. Cook until all the liquid as evaporated and texture is jam-like
  3. MUSSELS. While the sofrito is cooking, place the mussels in a saucepan with 1/2 cup of water or white wine. Cover and steam for 5 minutes until shells of mussels have opened.
  4. SHRIMP & SQUID. Heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil and add remaining garlic in pan. Add Shrimp and cook shrimp for 1-2 minutes. When shrimp start to turn pink, add squid and sautee for another 2 minutes. Lightly season with salt and pepper and remove from pan and set aside.
  5. PAELLA PRODUCTION. Heat 2 Tbsps of olive oil to paella pan and add chopped red & green peppers. Stir for 6 minutes. Add the Sofrito back to the pan along with the Spanish rice and cook for 1 minute. Add stock & salt and pepper- simmer for 10 minute without stirring
  6. PAELLA. Lower the heat and simmer for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 15 minutes, you can smell the rice toasting on the bottom of the pan. The toasted rice is called socorrat and is delicious. It’s like a crust at the bottom of the pan. (I remember when I was in Barcelona, Span and ordered paella for the first time and thought the rice was burnt! It wasn’t though and this is tradition of the dish). Once the rice is done cooking, add the fish, sausage, and peas. Turn off heat, cover in foil and let sit for 5 minutes.

Pair with a Spanish red wine, enjoy!

 

Happy Eating 🙂 xo