Monday, April 30, 2012

May Day


Tomorrow is May Day.... 

In the past, the day was marked by girls dressed in white,
frolicking around the Maypole... 


On May Day, 1886, the labor unions in Chicago
demanded an eight hour work day, shortened from
the twelve to fourteen hour days the workers endured... 

That week was stained by protest and bloodshed....

Hardly  a dance around the old maypole then... 

Now the Occupy movement is trying
to revive their cause around May Day... 

I am not one to discuss religion nor politics,

so I will reside with the more peaceful celebration
of leaving baskets of flowers, ding dong ditch style,
for friends and loved ones...  

Tradition says if the person catches the presenter
of flowers he/she gets a kiss... 

So, spread a little love tomorrow
and make a bouquet or two... 

Check out your backyard
for something fresh and pretty... 

These blooms were gathered out in the back forty
and will be given to the kid's teachers tomorrow... 

So Happy May Day and may you get a kiss or two!


Sunday, April 29, 2012

On a Tear...



I was on a food tear last week...

Made a meal plan, stuck to it,
shared them with neighbors,
and enjoyed some TASTY dishes!

Not sure why I did it...

Tom was out of town,
standing in front of the HEAT Armor trade show booth hawking his wares...
so it was just me and the kids...


Why bother to conjure up more than frozen nuggets,
tots and baby carrots?

Why make dinner when "Kids Eat Free Tuesdays"
are at the local pancake house?

I dunno.....just felt like it and it was fun...

Back at the ranch, it was a good week...

Nobody throwed up,
but Kate did come home from school early Friday with a tummy ache...

Cooking is my entertainment...

I like starting with a recipe or amending one
and ending up with delicious results...

Isn't it satisfying to see faces enjoying the flavors,
or requesting seconds?

Wow...I must be a mama...
living to feed my brood's stomachs...

Yikes!

Anyway, here is how the parade of meals went down...

First was Chicken Flautas, courtesy of Country Living Magazine...


I served them with all the fixings like lettuce, tomato, sour cream,
salsa and some boxed Mexican Rice...

The recipe makes a plethora of flautas,
so I took the bulk of them next door...

Chris has three kids, 16, 14 and 10 years old.

The 14 year old is 6'3" and wears size 14 shoes...

He is a big, hungry athlete...

His comment on the flautas was that I "cook with passion"...

Wow...

And this is why I cook...

The next night I made Pioneer Woman's 
Spicy Stewed Beef with Cheddar Grits. 


Oh, Mother of Jalapenos, it was hot!
 
But the creamy cheddar grits evened out the fire
and it was a comfort food extravaganza... 

Sent some next door to happy raves... 

My kids, not so much... 

"Too picy..." 

Day three of the cooking frenzy was
Grilled Chicken with Gazpacho Dressing, courtesy of Food Network Magazine 

It was sort of a panzanella
meets gazpacho kind of thing... 

What really sent it over the edge was the grilled bread,
cut into chunks... 

I made the bread a couple of days earlier and, oh my, that did it... 

If you make this recipe, make sure to get good, heavy crusty bread. 
Cubed, toasted Wonder Bread is not going to cut it... 

Regardless, this is one fantastic salad... 

So then I jumped off the Pinterest ledge
and made this ridiculous dessert I keep seeing on the site... 



It's a muffin tin, layered with cookie dough mix,
a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup and then brownie mix on top... 

Yeah, they are awesome,
but who really needs to eat that? 

I made them four days ago
and three cupcakes are still sitting on the cooling rack. 

Even my kids must think they are too rich... 

Okay, so one sort of failure,
but then Tom finally came home from London,
tired and in serious need of an American Budweiser... 

For a little TLC, I decided to make some good old fashioned
meat and potatoes for my man... 

Hello, Ina! 

She has a wonderful steak recipe, from her book, Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics,
made with Herbes de Provence. 

Usually I slap a good amount of Montreal Steak seasoning on the beef,
just how Tommy likes it,
but I shook things up a bit... 

Have you noticed how beef is not looking so good
in the grocery stores lately? 

The cuts look thinner and yet the prices are crazy... 

We buy steaks about as often as my kids offer to do chores,
but I wanted to splurge a little... 

The Paulina Meat Market is meat nirvana... 


I can count on one hand how many times I have been there as it is $$$. 

But Paulina is the old school kind of butcher shop,
where the men wear paper hats, have worked there since Truman was in office
and who don't mess around... 

You better know what you want, stat... 

Kind of like the Soup Nazi....  

Anyway, I bought two hanger steaks with authority
and beat it out of there before those voluptuous bone-in ribeyes
seduced me into buying them... 

So I made French Bistro Steaks with Provencal Butter and Ina's matchstick potatoes. 


The matchstick potatoes are rather time intensive,
but oh, so worth it. 

Note:  DO NOT put them in the oven to keep warm... 

I did and burnt the whole lot...I almost cried.   

Last on my culinary bender was Trisha Yearwood's Lemon Meringue Pie...


I haven't ever made this kind of pie
and haven't eaten many lemon meringues that are all that good, to be honest. 

Usually the meringue is a tasteless, gooey topping
over a faintly lemon flavored gelatinous concoction... 

Can I just tell you that my husband asked for seconds
and this happens about as often as he draws my bubble bath... 

This pie is pure heaven... 

I ain't been to the great beyond yet,
but for sure they are serving it after shuffleboard. 

Oh, and I made butter... 


Yeah, Pinterest again... 

Can you believe we don't have a butter churn?

Right.  Along with our covered wagon out back...

So, I wanted to show Kate how to make butter
in the old Kitchenaid... 

Throw in some cream,
beat the living daylights out of it
and you get butter! 

It was quick and fun, perfect for a six year old. 

Okay, so I am not done yet...

Sunday Dinner...
 
Ina "talked" me into making her lemon roasted chicken over croutons,
green beans, a simple salad
and if the team is lucky, a Texas Sheet Cake... 


We ate well last week and I have a plan for this week, too. 

I won't bore you with that... 

Why did I do it? 

Makes me and my village happy, that's why.  Enough said.
 
 
 
 




 Chicken Flautas
  • 1  (3-pound) rotisserie chicken
  • 8 ounce(s) queso fresco, crumbled (about 2 cups)
  • 1 2/3 cup(s) salsa verde, plus more for serving
  • 4 cup(s) safflower or canola oil, for frying
  • 16  (8-inch) flour tortillas
Directions
  1. Remove white and dark meat from chicken and shred, discarding bones and skin. In a large bowl, toss together chicken, 1 1/2 cups queso fresco, and salsa verde.
  2. Fit a baking pan with a wire rack; set aside. In a large, heavy-bottomed pot fitted with a deep-fry thermometer, heat oil (about 2 inches deep) over mediumhigh heat to 325 degrees F.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Place a tortilla on a clean surface and spoon about 1/2 cup chicken mixture in a line down the center. Roll tortilla up into a tight cylinder and insert a toothpick through the center to secure. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.
  4. Working in batches, deep-fry flautas until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes, turning halfway through. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, carefully remove from oil, tilting flautas to drain excess oil. Place on wire rack in prepared pan, remove toothpicks, and transfer to oven to keep warm. Serve hot with salsa verde and remaining queso fresco.

Spicy Stewed Beef with Creamy Cheddar Grits

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 3 pounds Stew Meat Or Diced Chuck Roast
  • 1 can (11 Ounces) Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce
  • 4 cups Low-sodium Beef Broth, More If Needed
  • 5 cloves Minced Garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Cumin
  • 2 teaspoons Chili Powder
  • 1 whole Onion, Diced
  • 1 whole Red Bell Pepper
  • 3 whole Chilies (any Variety, Hot Or Mild)
  • 4 cups Stone Ground Grits
  • 6 cups Low Sodium Chicken (or Beef) Broth
  • 3 cups Water
  • 2 cups Half-and-half
  • 2 cups Grated Cheddar Cheese

Preparation Instructions

To make the meat, heat 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large pot over high heat. Throw in stew meat and brown for 1 minute, then add chipotle peppers, beef broth, garlic, cumin, and chili powder. Stir, then bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, then cover and simmer for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until the meat is fall-apart tender and the liquid is thick. (Watch the meat occasionally and add more beef broth as needed.)
In the last hour of cooking time, make the grits: Heat remaining 1 tablespoon of both oil and butter. Add diced onion, bell pepper, and chilies and cook for five minutes or so. Pour in grits, then add chicken (or beef) broth and water. Stir, then bring to a boil . Reduce the heat to low, then cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 30 minutes, add half-and-half. Cook for another 20 to 30 minutes, or until grits are tender. Remove from heat and stir in grated cheese.
Serve pile of grits with stewed meat (liquid and all) over the top. Sprinkle on sliced green onion for color.
Prep Time Servings 12 Difficulty Easy

Grilled Chicken Salad With Gazpacho Dressing

Recipe courtesy Food Network Magazine

Ingredients
  • Cooking spray, for the pan
  • 1 pound chicken cutlets
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 slices crusty bread
  • 1 clove garlic, halved
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 seedless cucumber, diced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 8 cups baby arugula (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Directions

Preheat a grill pan over medium heat and lightly coat with cooking spray. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Grill until well marked and cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate. Add the bread to the pan and grill until toasted, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and rub with the garlic.
Make the dressing: Puree the olive oil, vinegar, 2 tablespoons water, half each of the cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and almonds, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste in a blender until smooth.
Cut the chicken into strips. Tear the bread into bite-size pieces. Combine the arugula, chickpeas, chicken, bread and the remaining cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and almonds in a large bowl. Add half of the dressing, season with salt and pepper and toss. Divide among shallow bowls. Drizzle with the remaining dressing.



French Bistro Steaks with Proven├žal Butter

For the butter:
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon capers, drained
2 tablespoons minced chives
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) salted butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence

For the steaks:
4 teaspoons herbes de Provence
kosher salt and coarsely cracked black pepper
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 hangar steaks, 8 to 10 ounces each

For the butter, put the garlic, capers, chives, thyme, zest, and pepper in the small bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine.  Add the butter and process until completely mixed.  Transfer butter mixture to a piece of parchment paper and roll it into a log, twisting the ends.  Store in the refrigerator


Matchstick Potatoes 

Ingredients

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Pour at least 1-inch of oil into a deep pot and heat it to 350 degrees F.
Slice the potatoes into thin matchsticks (1/8-inch thick) with a vegetable slicer or mandoline, dropping them into a bowl of cold water as you cut. Drain the potatoes and dry them thoroughly with paper towels. Drop the potatoes in batches into the hot oil and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the pot with a wire basket skimmer or slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Place on a baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, and keep warm in the oven while you cook the rest of the potatoes.
Sprinkle the potatoes with parsley, if desired, and serve hot.


Magic Lemon Meringue Pie
Serves 10
Crust Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
Filling Ingredients:
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 large lemons)
1 tsp grated lemon peel
3 large egg yolks
Meringue Ingredients:
3 large egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup sugar
Preparation:
1. Heat oven to 325F.
2. Crust: Mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter in a medium bowl until crumbs are moistened. Press mixture firmly over bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie plate; set aside.
3. Filling: Mix the condensed milk, lemon juice, lemon peel and egg yolks in a large bowl. Pour the filling into prepared crust.
4. Meringue: Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until soft peaks begin to form. Increase speed to medium-high and gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating just until stiff peaks form when beaters are lifted. Do not overbeat.
5. Spoon meringue on pie to cover filling mounding it in center and spreading it to touch crust around entire edge to prevent meringue from “weeping”. Using back of spoon, swirl meringue decoratively. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until the meringue browns slightly. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

Recipe and photo courtesy of Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood

Lemon Chicken with Croutons, courtesy of The Barefoot Contessa 

Ingredients

  • 1 (4 to 5-pound) roasting chicken
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced
  • Good olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 lemons, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 6 cups (3/4-inch) bread cubes (1 baguette or round boule)
  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Directions

Take the giblets out of the chicken and wash it inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pinfeathers. Toss the onion with a little olive oil in a small roasting pan. Place the chicken on top and sprinkle the inside of the cavity with salt and pepper. Place the lemons inside the chicken. Pat the outside of the chicken dry with paper towels, brush it with the melted butter, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken.
Roast for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and the thigh. Cover with foil and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes. (The onions may burn, but the flavor is good.)
Meanwhile, heat a large saute pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil until very hot. Lower the heat to medium-low and saute the bread cubes, tossing frequently, until nicely browned, 8 to
10 minutes. Add more olive oil, as needed, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Place the croutons on a serving platter. Slice the chicken and place it, plus all the pan juices, over the croutons. Sprinkle with salt and serve warm.

Texas Sheet Cake

Bring to a boil: 
4T Cocoa powder
1/2 C Shortening
1 Stick Butter
1 C water
In a mixing bowl, combine:
2 C flour
2 C sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Stir flour mixture and cocoa mixture together:
Add:
1 C buttermilk
2 eggs, beaten
Pour cake batter into a greased and floured 2 inch baking sheet.  Bake at 400 degrees until a toothpick comes out clean, about 30 to 40 min.
Icing:
Bring to a boil:
4 T cocoa powder
6 T milk
1 tsp vanilla
Spread on warm cake
 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Eating Bon Bons, er Pasta...


 When I stopped working at HEAT Armor,
I envisioned waking up mornings to ponder,
"What to do today?",
planning out where to window shop,
meet a friend for lunch or set about a major craft project...

Okay, in no way did I believe that was going to happen... 

However, I did not realize how busy
I have become since my final day as Mrs. Wiggins. 

Auditions, bookings, school band concerts,
volunteering at the book fair, Grandparents Day at school and
field trips have all stepped in the way
of my supposed blissful new existence... 

One morning was interrupted by a trip to deposit a company check
and it took two hours...Huh??


One can't get any sort of backyard tan
with only thirty minutes left in the day
before school pick up, now can we???


Oh the nerve!

So, today was the first day,
a full six weeks or so hence
that I had the day,
sort of,
to myself. 

Of course, I do have a part time job
and so I worked at my desk for a few hours this morning... 

But I enjoyed it, unrushed.

And now it's high noon
and the possibilities are endless... 


That is, if you are calling two hours until kid pick up
boundless reasons for glee and merrymaking... 

I'll take what I can get... 

It's lunch time, the pantry is rather bare...payday is tomorrow... 

I could cop out (as I often do)
and fire up the ramen noodles,
snarf down a large spoonful of extra chunky peanut butter
and call it a meal
or make myself a lunch like the Italians do... 

A leisurely, easy, yet carefully made meal... 

Home made pasta sauce... 

I can smell it bubbling on the stove,
all tomatoe-y and warm... 

The pasta water is at high simmer
and the fridge hums in harmony. 

I'd like to think of it as my version of bon bons...

So here is the recipe, straight from  
Mad Hungry, Feeding Men & Boys, 
by Lucinda Scala Quinn










Basic Italian Tomato Sauce
Makes 3 cups; enough for 1 pound of pasta
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 28-ounce can best-quality tomatoes, pulsed in a blender
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 sprig of fresh basil (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)

Directions

  1. Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Swirl around the olive oil to coat the pan, and when the oil is hot, add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir constantly for 30 seconds, just long enough to release the garlic's fragrance and transform it slightly from its raw state. Don't cook it to golden.

    Raise the heat to high and stir in the tomatoes and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, add the basil sprig, if using. Remove the basil before serving and swirl in the butter, if using.



    And here is what's for dinner.....




Grilled Chicken Salad With Gazpacho Dressing
Ingredients

Directions

Preheat a grill pan over medium heat and lightly coat with cooking spray. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Grill until well marked and cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate. Add the bread to the pan and grill until toasted, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and rub with the garlic.
Make the dressing: Puree the olive oil, vinegar, 2 tablespoons water, half each of the cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and almonds, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste in a blender until smooth.
Cut the chicken into strips. Tear the bread into bite-size pieces. Combine the arugula, chickpeas, chicken, bread and the remaining cucumber, tomatoes, parsley and almonds in a large bowl. Add half of the dressing, season with salt and pepper and toss. Divide among shallow bowls. Drizzle with the remaining dressing.

Monday, April 16, 2012

All Keyed Up...


 I love an easy DIY project that is FREE... 

My mother's mother was a collector
of mostly antiques.

She lived in a real, bonafide cabin in the north woods of Minnesota
and her home was chock full of lovely antique furniture,
old coffee grinders,
a genuine crank telephone, hand braided rag rugs,
you name it... 

After my grandparents died,
all those wonderful artifacts were dispersed
among family members... 

Little by little, my mom handed some things down to me...

My favorite is the pie safe my grandpa found in the trash...

Grandma restored it and now it houses my Wedgewood,
silver and crystal vessels...

There is nothing like a piece with history attached to it....

So Sunday, Mom gave me a battered velvet panel
that had dozens of old skeleton keys wired to it... 

It must have been in a frame at one time...

The keys looked so interesting
that I had to restyle them for my home....

I got to thinking and then I remembered
I had saved a burlap pillow cover
that had been tortured by the kids... 

I liked the vintage print on it
and wanted to repurpose it somehow...

Eureka!

I pulled out a frame I had been saving
and duct taped the burlap to its backing...

Next I washed, dried and arranged the keys on the print..

I whipped out my trusty glue gun
and set to attaching the keys (with a few burned fingers) and,


Voila'!

I love its vintage look
and it will be perfect as part of an ensemble
around the TV on the wall in the living room...

The whole project cost zip, nada, nuttin',
which is the best of all...

So, if you want to "Get the Look.."

Head to JoAnn Fabrics...

Make sure you have one of their coupons
at the ready to save some dough...

Check out the home decor department
for a burlap-y vintage print... 

I think all home decor fabrics are 50% off right now...

Most often,  their frames are on sale, too.

Kohls puts their frames on sale frequently, as well...

The key part is the hardest.... 
but guess what?

I found a whole passel of them for sale on Ebay for CHEAP!

Check it out here...

Flea markets are a good place to hunt for old keys, too...

Hopefully you already have duct tape and a glue gun, right?

Please tell me you do....
Okay, whew!
 Have fun!



Here's another goodie for you today.... 

This week is "Eat out of the Pantry Week"...
aka, we are broke....

So, I pulled out some ground beef to make burgers...

Sorry if you are tired of me sharing recipes from The Pioneer Woman,
but her food is so DANG GOOD!!!
I can't help it....I might have a crush on Ree....

Here is her burger recipe...

All I can say is, my son kept extolling the burger's virtues...good enough for me!

His/Her Burgers
Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier

Ingredients:
2 lbs 80/20 ground beef
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/3 C heavy cream
5 dashes Worcestershire sauce
Tobasco sauce to taste
8-10 burger buns

Combine all ingredients and form into 8- 10 patties.  Grill or fry them in a skillet over med/high heat until they are no longer pink in the middle.  Holy Mother of Beef, they are tasty!!!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

What Makes Mama Happy....


You know those days where everything goes wrong
and you want to have an all out tantrum...


The two year old variety where you thrash and kick
on the floor of the grocery store
while the produce manager stares?

Just before they call security, you force yourself
to find a little gratitude... 

Yeah, I've had those days too,
more than I care to share...

Today is not one of those days...


In fact, barring a piano landing on my head
any moment for tempting fate,
I am feeling pretty good...


Thus, a short list of the things that make me happy, right now!


Some things are purely material in nature,
others money can't buy...


1. Land's End Sneakers...


















These classic, Keds look alikes are comfy
and look great with capris, shorts,
casual skirts or jeans.
I feel like I am channeling Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelly in them....
I know, I'm a dork...

2. The new Athleta Store...


















Owned by Gap, this awesome women's clothing catalog
just opened a store in our neighborhood.
Mind you, I can't afford anything,
but I sure can drool...

3.  My Back Yard...













Spring sprang right up
and last year's investment of bulbs have rewarded me aplenty.
The hostas are peeking out and the daffodils and tulips are so pretty...
A year ago my back yard was a wasteland of construction debris and dirt....
I am so grateful to have my yard back...

4. Pellegrino with Lemon...
On those nights when I can't share the Pinot G
with Tom, the Pellegrino at least looks like a cocktail
and it's very refreshing...

5. DHC Olive Oil Cleanser...

















This product is an awesome cleanser and eye makeup remover.
One bottle lasts about six months, too.
DHC rocks...

6. Pinterest Recipes...















If you are seeking decadent desserts, inventive dips
or fantabulous casserole recipes, Pinterest is your site.
It has become my go-to recipe source...

7. Ree's Spicy Lemon Garlic Shrimp...















Have you noticed a lemon theme?
So did I... Oops...
I made this while at Amelia and it was sooooo good!
I'll be making this again soon
and will serve it over spaghetti...
Deelish!!!

8. Parkour...














Parkour is this French-invented street tumbling
that you have probably seen in commercials.
Guys leap from building to building, run up walls,
flip all over the place, etc.
Jack is taking a Parkour class
and I love it because he does
and mostly because it wears his little fanny out!


9. The Hunger Games...

















As usual I am late on the trend watch,
but I am flying through Book 3 of the trilogy...
Can't wait to see the movie...

10.  Downton Abbey...














Again, late to catch the wave, but who cares?
Tommy and I cuddle up in bed each night
and watch an episode on his tablet computer.
We share this addiction together and we love it.
He has no interest in my "Top Chef" devotion
and I shun him when he watches "Sons of Anarchy",
so Downton brings us together...

And that is my favorite thing of all....

Recipe: Spicy Lemon Garlic Shrimp, 

Courtesy of Pioneer Woman


Ingredients

  • 2 pounds Raw Shrimp, Deveined, Shells On
  • 2 sticks Cold Unsalted Butter Cut Into Pieces
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Peeled
  • 1/4 cup Fresh Parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 whole Lemon, Juiced

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rinse frozen shrimp to separate, then arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet.
In the bowl of a food processor, add cold butter, garlic, lemon juice, salt, parsley, and red pepper. Pulse until combined. Sprinkle cold butter crumbles over the shrimp.
Bake until shrimp is opaque and butter is hot and bubbly.
Serve with hot crusty bread. Peel and eat the shrimp, then dip the bread into the butter in the bottom of the pan.