Scallops with Wasabi Vinaigrette

Scallops served with a sweet wasabi vinaigrette. YES!

Happy Monday to you!

Scallops with Wasabi Vinaigrette

It’s probably the wasabi, but this dish reminds me of my favorite sushi dishes. I can always eat sushi, but sometimes I go through phases where I want it every other day. Like, I crave it really bad. So I eat it for lunch and then pick it up on the way home for dinner. If my husband ever turned down sushi, I would think he was sick. There’s this sushi place that he has been taking me to since before we ever started dating. He has been going there since it first opened and was nothing but a hole in the wall. It has now expanded considerably since he first took me, and while we aren’t as happy with how mainstream it has become, and how rude some of the waitstaff is, the sushi rolls remain the same. I have stopped trying sushi in other restaurants, it just isn’t anywhere near as good as “our spot”.

These scallops are quickly sauteed and then drizzled with a wasabi vinaigrette. I served them over my orange orzo with basil, and the flavors worked really well together. You can use large sea scallops or bay scallops, just make sure they are labeled “dry” scallops. My plan was to use large sea scallops, but my grocery store didn’t have dry scallops. So I went with a package of Faroe Island dry scallops, they worked out just as well.

 

Scallops with Wasabi Vinaigrette

For the Vinaigrette

  • 2 tsp. Wasabi paste
  • 3 Tbsp. Soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp. Rice vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. Vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 tsp. Brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. Peeled, grated, fresh ginger

 

  • 1 lb. Dry scallops
  • 2 Tbsp. Vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Combine all vinaigrette ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
  2. Pat scallops dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat 1 Tbsp. of oil over medium-high heat in a large nonstick skillet. Arrange scallops in a single layer, leaving space around each one. Cook for 3-5 minutes, turn each scallop, and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes, or until just cooked through. Repeat with remaining scallops, if needed.
  4. Drizzle scallops with vinaigrette and serve immediately.

Orange Orzo with Basil

How was your weekend?

Did anyone else binge watch OITNB like I did?

Ohhhh, hubby took me to see Jurassic World. It was amazing. Personally, I really love the long necks, and yes, that is the correct term for them. In my world anyway. I think it goes back to when I was a kid and I watched Land Before Time, and I loved Little Foot and his mom. It still makes me cry when his mom dies. Ugh.

So in other news, check this out!

Orange

Orange infused orzo! With Parmesan! And a hint of basil!

Can you tell I’m excited?

I could seriously eat this every day. Side dish. Main dish. Whatever, just pile it up high on my plate!

The orzo is boiled in orange juice and then rinsed off, before it gets mixed with fresh Parmesan cheese, and ribbons of fresh basil.

This is summer food.

I haven’t tried it yet, but i’m pretty sure that this would be just as good as a cold “pasta salad” served at a family picnic. Try it. Let me know how it works.

 

Orange Orzo with Basil

  • 4 C orange juice
  • 1 C water
  • 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil or olive oil
  • 1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
  • 8 oz. orzo
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 6 large fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese, plus more to garnish

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, bring orange juice, water, oil, and salt to a boil. Add the orzo and continue to boil, stirring often, until orzo is tender, about 10-12 minutes. Drain and gently rinse.
  2. Pour orzo back into pan and add butter, Parmesan, and basil. Stir until well mixed. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish each serving with more Parmesan.

 

Pumpkin Oat Dog Treats

Friiiiday! I’ve been waiting all week for this day to come!

Weekend plans?

I’m going to get into the bee hive this weekend and check on everybody. I need to locate my queen and make sure that everything is running as it should.

And tag sales. Always looking for good estate sales! Because holiday decor!

Oh, have you been watching the NBA finals? Good lord pass the xanax! These games are giving me major anxiety!

Show of hands, who is obsessed with their dog(s)?

Do you make your own treats or do you buy store bought? I stopped buying store bought years ago for a few reasons. First, I like to know exactly what is going into the things that my dogs consume. Second, making homemade treats is so much cheaper, especially when you have 4 dogs, 3 of which are large. And third, because the whole treats from China killing dogs thing freaks me out!

My dogs are canine garbage disposals, they will eat anything I serve them. They will sit and beg for fresh spinach and dried nori. They seem to have a special place in their hearts for pumpkin though. Pumpkin is so good for dogs. It’s high in fiber and low in fat, and it’s loaded with vitamin A & C, potassium, iron, beta carotene, magnesium, and zinc. If your dog ever gets diarrhea after accidentally getting a hold of something really fatty, give him/her a little canned pumpkin, it should clear the diarrhea up. I have used that trick many times with great success.

I also add a little turmeric to these treats. Turmeric has so many benefits, such as:

  1. Killing parasites
  2. Anti-cancer properties
  3. Helps to prevent cataracts
  4. Helps epilepsy
  5. Helps relieve allergies

The list goes on and on.

I hope your dogs love these as much as mine do.

Because these are frozen treats, they are perfect for a hot summer day!

Pumpkin

 

Pumpkin Oat Dog Treats

  • 1 can 100% pure pumpkin, do not use pumpkin pie filling
  • 3/4 C old fashioned oats, plus more for rolling
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • Dash of cinnamon

Directions

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, oats, turmeric, and cinnamon. Mix well.
  2. Spread about 1/2 C of oats on a plate. With your hands begin gently rolling pumpkin mixture into balls, about the size of a golf ball. Then gently roll each ball through the oats on the plate. Transfer to a lined baking sheet.
  3. Place baking tray full of treats in the freezer and freeze overnight. Transfer treats to a Ziploc bag and store in the freezer.

Black bean Tostadas with Cilantro Crema

It’s Friday, lets rock!

Black Bean

Soooo I made two meatless dishes this week and surprisingly my husband is still alive!

Bryan came into the kitchen the the other night when I was preparing these tostadas and looked into the bowl of black beans and said “hey, what’s that? Where’s the meat?”. When dinner was ready he looked back into the bowl of beans and said “you were serious? There’s really no meat?”. When he was done eating, he told me “those were pretty good. They almost tasted like they had meat in them!”.

When we go to a Mexican restaurant we always order the same thing, two beef chimichangas . Sometimes we look at other menu items and discuss what sounds good, but we never stray from our usual. The chimi’s always have beans on the side, along with a bed of lettuce, tomatoes, and sour cream. After we eat aka destroy our food, there is always this bean/sauce/lettuce/tomato/sour cream mixture left on the plate and then we scoop it all up with chips. It’s the best!

These tostadas are like the end of the meal, when you scoop all of that delicious goodness up on a chip!

Oh, and guess what else, these are super easy and really quick to make!

Oh, oh, oh, annnd we’re going to kick up our sour cream game and add some cilantro and tomatillos!

Black Bean TostadaHello Friday, hand me a Corona and one of these tostadas!

 

Black Bean Tostadas with Cilantro Crema

  • 2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 C red onion, diced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • 1/8 tsp. smoked paprika
  • Corn tortillas
  • Vegetable oil
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Tomatoes, diced
  • Queso Fresco cheese, crumbled

For the cilantro crema

  • 3/4 C sour cream
  • 1/2 C cilantro
  • 1 large tomatillo, husk removed and rinsed
  • 1/2 Tbsp. lemon or lime juice (I used lemon)
  • 2 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded (optional)
  • 1/2 – 1 Tbsp. honey, start with 1/2 Tbsp., taste and adjust if needed

Directions

  1. Mash beans with a potato masher or pulse in a food processor. Stir in onion, lime juice, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, cumin, and paprika. Mix well and set aside.
  2. In a food processor or blender, add all cilantro crema ingredients and blend well. Set aside.
  3. Preheat your broiler. Rub a little oil on both sides of each tortilla and bake under the broiler 2-4 minutes, or until golden brown on both sides. Watch carefully, it happens quickly. Alternatively, you could also heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook the tortillas on each side.
  4. To assemble a tostada, pick a tortilla up and gently spread bean mixture on top. Lay it down on a plate and sprinkle with lettuce, tomatoes, and cheese. Drizzle cilantro crema on top and enjoy!

 

 

 

Lobster Scrambled Eggs with Mascarpone

Look at this. This right here is the answer to your Monday morning blues!

Lobster

 

The night I made these and took my first bite, it felt like I had died and gone to heaven.

This is what dreams are made of.

A plate of gently scrambled eggs with mascarpone cheese and chunks of lobster floating throughout.

These eggs are perfect for brunch or dinner.

I prefer to eat these for dinner. They’re rich, so unless you plan on taking a nap after breakfast, I suggest you make them for dinner too!

Lobster Scrambled

Look how fluffy and creamy they are!

Dead. Dying. Just dead.

These eggs turn me into a basic B.

 

Lobster Scrambled Eggs with Mascarpone 

  • 10 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 cooked lobster tails, meat chopped up
  • 1/3 C mascarpone cheese
  • 1  1/2 tsp. fresh chives, chopped

Directions

  1. Beat eggs and stir in salt and pepper.
  2. Heat butter in a nonstick frying pan over medium-low heat.
  3. Add eggs and gently stir with a rubber spatula just until they begin to set.
  4. Add lobster meat and stir until warmed, less than a minute.
  5. When eggs are ready, pull pan off heat and add mascarpone and chives, folding them gently into the eggs. Don’t overmix them. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Skillet Shrimp

I haven’t been this excited that’s it’s Friday, since last Friday!

Shrimp Skillet

So, how was your Memorial day weekend? I did some tag saling, hung out with friends at a local winery, did some gardening, and the biggest thing, my husband and I bought a beehive! We grabbed it at a tag sale on Saturday, cleaned it up, and painted it. It looks brand new. We bought a nuc on Sunday from a man whose bees weathered the winter very well. He had 21 beehives in his apiary, he took us back to see them, and as I stood there amidst thousands of bees, I found it to be eerily calming. After all of “the girls” had come back to their little makeshift hive, we taped it up, and took it home…carefully I might add. We transferred the bees to their new home on Monday and I got christened with a sting to the top of my head! No worries, they let my husband into the secret club on Wednesday with a sting to the head as well. We have now learned first hand that bees do not like the color black. Bad news for me, considering I own more black clothing than Morticia Addams. But I can’t wait to see my garden explode with the help of our new bees and i’m really looking forward to harvesting honey.

Anyway, it’s Friday and the weather is beautiful, this shrimp skillet would be the perfect meal to eat outside with friends. I made this last week, but I’m really tempted to make it again tonight. It’s such a simple dinner with great flavors. The shrimp is cooked in the most delicious broth that reminds me a little of shrimp scampi, with a twist obviously.

Swimming around with the shrimp there are fresh tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and lets not forget the garlic. Never forget the garlic, that would be a sin!

Shrimp

Oh, when you make this, please promise me that your will serve it with a big loaf of crusty bread to soak up all of that delicious sauce!

I like to grill bread and then dip it into the sauce and then spoon my shrimp on top and eat it. Amazing.

Do you grill bread? Ugh. It’s my favorite.

Bread

 

Skillet Shrimp

  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large white onion, diced
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1 lb. shrimp, shells removed
  • 2 large plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 4 Tbsp. cilantro

Directions

  1. Melt butter and olive oil over medium-high heat in a cast iron skillet. Add onions and saute until softened. Add garlic and jalapeno and saute one minute more.
  2. Add tomatoes, salt, oregano, lime, and lemon and stir to combine. Simmer over medium heat, stirring often, for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add shrimp and cook until pink and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add cilantro, stir well to combine, and serve immediately.

Texas Sheet Cake

Ahhh Friday, the golden child of weekdays!

This Friday is better than last Friday, because it’s the beginning of a long weekend!

So what are you doing? Any big plans?

I debated long and hard over which recipe to give you today. It came down to a really delicious stuffed loaf of French bread or this sheet cake. I figured with the holiday weekend I would give you an easy dessert that is very portable. Perfect to take along to any picnics or barbecues you are going to.

Texas

This recipe came from a coworker of mine. She made this a few times for various luncheons that we had over the years and it was always a huge hit. She recently retired and I miss her every single day.

I love this cake, which is huge, because I don’t like chocolate cake. Give me white cake with a raspberry filling any day. But this cake isn’t like other chocolate cakes that I have had. This one is super moist and the frosting kind of hardens a little bit and it’s just amazing. Sometimes I play around with the frosting and add some extra powdered sugar until it’s thick, but still pourable. and when it hardens it reminds me of a layer of fudge on top of the cake. So feel free to do that. You can’t go wrong here, this recipe is pretty fool proof. Obviously I did the whole thick fudge frosting thing with this one.

Texas Sheet

OH! Wanna know what the best part is???

You don’t need 3 different bowls and the beaters or a mixer. Just a pot and a spoon!

Just look how moist that cake is! Are you disgusted by that word? I’m sorry! It’s the best word to describe a cake. Have you ever looked at the synonyms for moist? Damp, soggy, watery, oozy, clammy. Yeah….so…there’s that.

Whatever, just make this super damp cake!

Texas Sheet Cake

Texas Sheet Cake

For the cake:

  • 2 sticks margarine or butter
  • 1 C water
  • 4 Tbsp. cocoa
  • 2 C flour
  • 2 C sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 C sour cream or buttermilk
  • 1 tsp. baking soda

For the frosting:

  • 1 stick margarine or butter
  • 4 Tbsp. cocoa
  • 4-6 Tbsp. milk
  • 4-6 C confectioners sugar
  • 1  tsp. vanilla

Directions

  1. Combine butter, water, and cocoa in a medium pot over medium-high heat, whisking constantly until mixture is smooth. Bring to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, beat eggs and sour cream together until smooth and free of lumps. Add baking soda.
  3. Once cocoa mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat and add dry ingredients, mixing well. Then add egg mixture and stir to combine.
  4. Pour into greased 15x10x1 jelly roll pan. You can also use a 13×9 casserole dish. Bake for 20-22 minutes in a 375º oven.

For the frosting:

  1. Combine butter, milk, and cocoa in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
  2. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, mix well.
  3. Spread on cake while still warm.

Crab Cakes with Remoulade

Happy Monday!

Crab Cakes

Just kidding. It’s Tuesday. I totally effed up the whole “give all of you beautiful people a new recipe to make Monday a little better” thing. Sorry. Really, I am. Remember that migraine I was complaining about on Friday? Yeah, well guess who woke up at 3:15 a.m. with a raging cluster headache? That’s right. This broad right here! So please forgive me for not giving you something yesterday, but I was basically dying. I would take the worst migraine any day over a cluster headache. In other news I desperately need to see my chiropractor. He can fix these ice picks in my brain thing.

Also, did it make your stomach drop just seeing the words “happy Monday”?

I made these crab cakes last weekend after my husband had a piece of corroded metal drilled out of his cornea. Yeah, you read that correctly. Sounds pleasant, ehh? Between the two of us we’re a hot mess. All aboard the hot mess express!

Obviously we needed something good to look forward to after leaving the eye doctor’s. I say “we” because while my husband was the lucky one in the chair, his eyeball was numb, he didn’t feel a thing. I on the other hand had to actually watch him get his eyeball picked at with a needle and then drilled with the tiniest eyeball drill ever. I’m pretty sure that’s the technical term for it.

What’s that? You have no appetite now? Shoot…well, more crab cakes for me then!

 

Crab Cakes with Remoulade

  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 16 oz. crab meat
  • 3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. Old Bay
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 C Ritz crackers, crushed

For the Remoulade

  • 1/2 C mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp. ketchup
  • 1 tsp. Tony Chacheres cajun seasoning
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. horseradish
  • small dollop Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Sriracha to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350º.
  2. In a large skillet melt 2 Tbsp. butter over medium-high heat and saute onion and bell pepper until softened. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Allow to cool slightly.
  3. Add next 8 ingredients and mix well. Form into patties.
  4. In a large skillet, melt 2 Tbsp. butter over medium-high heat and add crab cakes. Cook 3-5 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Transfer to a greased baking tray and bake 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through.
  5. For the remoulade, add all ingredients to a bowl and stir well.

Makes about 10 crab cakes.

Strawberry “Ice Cream” Sandwiches

Hip hip hooray, it’s Friday!

Strawberry2

I had a migraine all day yesterday. Two doses of otc’s and it was still there. I could not wait to go to bed with my new eye pillow. I saw it on Amazon the other day and decided to buy it and keep it around. It showed up on Wednesday, not a day too soon. I stuck it in the freezer for the next time I had a migraine. I sat at work yesterday fantasizing all day about wrapping that thing around my face and going to bed! I don’t even remember falling asleep. This thing is magical. I put it on and thought “ok this is cold, but not too cold. It’s not uncomfortable by any means. Hey, I can’t feel the pounding behind my eye anymore. Sweeeet! This is kind of soothing. Boy I really like the eye pockets. It’s super dark. This is nice.” And *BAM* next thing I know, my alarm is blaring. I can’t remember the last time I actually slept so hard. This thing is a God send. For any of you that are interested, it’s called “The IMAK” and it will set you back a whopping $12! I figured I had nothing to lose when I ordered it, if it didn’t work, no big deal. But I love it, I can’t wait to go back to bed tonight!

Soooo, whatcha got planned for the weekend?

I think I’m going to start planting vegetables in my garden. My herbs and raspberries have come back and they’re all looking great. I want to go grab some tomatoes and definitely tomatillos. My tomatillos took off last year, it was awesome. Sadly I only got two tomatoes from my great white tomato plant. And as usual I want to do zucchini again. I have never had good luck with zucchini and I don’t know why. Everything else grows nicely. I feel like everyone else I meet has zucchini coming out the whazoo, they can’t give it away. And then there are my zucchini plants, empty and bare, except for one or two tiny little zucchini that end up either dying or getting eaten by some rabbits.

I also need to clean up my basement. My Halloween decorations are taking over and I need to organize them. But who actually wants to clean their basement? Not me. And definitely not my husband. We keep finding new shows on Netflix that are just way more important!

Oh, there are some great tag sales in my area this weekend. So obviously I won’t be able to organize my basement. I will be busy looking through other people’s holiday junk to drag home and stick in my basement. I really should wait. If I clean now It will just get cluttered again after tag saling. Yeah, that’s a great plan!

I wasn’t quite sure what to label this post. Strawberry sandwiches…no, that sounds gross. Strawberry whipped cream graham crackers? No. Then you wouldn’t want the recipe. Is this a recipe? Yeah. I mean, kinda. It’s super easy, it tastes really good, and you will want to double this because it’s not actually ice cream and I mean there’s fruit in there too, so it’s basically health food and you can eat it all in one sitting.

Strawberry

Strawberry “Ice Cream” Sandwiches

  • 1 C diced strawberries
  • 1 C Cool Whip
  • 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 sleeve Graham Crackers

Directions

  1. Combine diced strawberries, vanilla, and sugar in a bowl and let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Add Cool Whip to strawberries and mix well.
  3. Break Graham Crackers in half, spoon cool whip mixture on one Graham Cracker half and place other half on top. Squeeze very gently. Continue until Cool Whip mixture is gone. Place in the freezer for 1 hour or until set. Store in an airtight container in the freezer.

Sausage, Pepper, and Onion Pasta

Pasta

Salutations!

Did that just remind you of Charlotte, the spider in Charlotte’s Web?

No? Just me? Alrighty then.

Happy belated mother’s day to all the mom’s out there. I hope your children were on their absolute best behavior and gave you peace and quiet all day. I’m sure they didn’t, but hey, maybe next year. Yeah, probably not, but a mother can dream!

So lets chat about this pasta.

Last week I was talking to a friend who had made sausage and peppers to take to a new mom. This was about 2 hours before heading home and trying to figure out what to make for dinner and it was about 3 hours past lunch, so obviously I was starving. And for some reason that just sounded so good, even though it’s not a dish I grew up with and it’s not something that I make. Weird.

As I drove home I just kept thinking about it. First I thought about making sausage sandwiches with peppers and onions, now that I can do, my dad makes them quite frequently in the summer. But that wasn’t appealing to me, we typically put BBQ sauce on our sausages. I wanted to cook the sausage and peppers in a red sauce. But of course I kept thinking about bread of some sort, because carbs. Duh.

This pasta is my new favorite. The peppers and onions are so sweet and they’re enveloped in a delicious red sauce with wine and then wrapped up in really thick noodles and lets not forget the delicious sausage. I legit ate this for lunch every day last week except for Friday. I also kept pulling it out of the fridge and having a bite or two in the morning or right before bed. It is so so good.

Sausage

Sausage, Pepper, and Onion Pasta

  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 white onion, sliced
  • 1 lb. ground Italian sausage-sweet, hot, or a mixture of both
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1  1/2 tsp. Penzey’s pizza seasoning or Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp very dry sherry
  • 1/2 C dry white wine
  • 3 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/2 C parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 C Parmesan cheese
  • 4 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1  28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 16 oz. wide noodles such as pappardelle

Directions

  1. Heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil over medium-high heat in a large dutch oven or skillet. Cook sausage until browned and cooked through. Keep the sausage chunky, don’t break it up too tiny. Remove sausage and set aside in a bowl.
  2. Add onions to sausage drippings and cook for about 5 minutes, until onions begin to caramelize. Add salt, pepper, and pizza or Italian seasoning and stir to combine. Add peppers and saute for about 2-3 minutes until they become tender. Add garlic and saute 1 minute more. Add wine and sherry and cook until reduced by a little more than half. Add crushed tomatoes, Parmesan, and sausage and mix well. Add 2 Tbsp. olive oil, basil, and parsley and stir to combine.
  3. Add noodles to pan and toss well. Serve immediately with extra grated Parmesan.