Dinner, Seafood

Shrimp and Fettuccine with white wine sauce

    To celebrate national pasta day last Friday we made a variation of a recipe we found on Pinterest.  As you might know, pasta is one of my son’s favorite dishes.  So we decided that he was going to help with the cooking this evening to skills to more than ramen noodles and omelettes.  It would not be that difficult has he has been working over the summer and on breaks as a prep cook at a local restaurant.  He has spent many an hour slicing and dicing various items for the line cooks we knew he could do this at home and actually complete the recipe.  

    The sauce is very light but has a kick with the crushed red pepper.  You can even omit the shrimp and just make the sauce for your next pasta dish.

    1 lb pasta 

    2 tsp minced garlic
    1/4 c olive oil
    5 Tbsp butter
    1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
    1 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp pepper {fresh ground}
    1/2 c white wine
    1/2 c parsley for garnishing
    1/2 c fresh grated Parmesan
    1 lb of large size shrimp

    In large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium. Add garlic, red pepper and saute until golden, about a minute.  Add salt, pepper, wine and butter.Stir 2 minutes, add shrimp and cook until pink – about 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and toss with pasta.Garnish with parsley and generously add fresh Parmesan

      Dinner, one pot meals, Pasta

      Rigatoni with Sausage and Fennel

      Just by looking a this picture you can almost taste how delicious this is. My son and I were watching an old Ina Garten episode from the summer of 2017 on pasta dishes and saw her making this recipe. My mouth was watering by the end of the episode and I knew that I needed to make this. So off to the store this morning to get the necessary ingredients. My pasta loving son was pleased and so was my hubby. I even think this is foodie friends worthy.

      3 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

      3 cups chopped fennel (1 large fennel bulb)

      1 ½ cups chopped yellow onion

      1 ¼ pounds Sweet Italian sausage, casing removed

      2 tsp. minced garlic (2 cloves)

      ½ teaspoon whole fennel seeds, crushed with a mortar and pestle

      ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

      Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper

      1 cup dry white wine

      1 cup heavy cream

      2/3 cups half-and-half

      2 tbsp. tomato paste

      1 lb. Rigatoni

      ½ cup chopped, fresh Italian parsley leaves

      1 cup freshly grated Reggiano Parmigiano cheese, divided

      Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy pot or Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset, over medium heat. Add the fennel and onion and sauté for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. Add the sausage and cook for 7 to 8 minutes, crumbling it with a fork, until nicely browned. Add the garlic, crushed fennel seeds, red pepper flakes, 2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. black pepper and cook for one minute.

      Pour in the wine, bring to a boil and add the heavy cream, half-and-half, and tomato paste. Bring back to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until the sauce has thickened.

      Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, add 2 tbsp. salt and cook the rigatoni according to package directions. Drain and add to the sauce, stirring to coat the pasta. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes to allow the pasta to absorb the sauce.

      Off the heat, stir in the parsley and ½ cup of the Reggiano Parmigiano. Serve hot in shallow bowls with passing the remaining ½ cup of Parmigiano.


      One Pot Chicken Pesto Pasta

      Another one pot wonder hit the table last week and if you were following my Instagram account I tried to show this recipe in a story.  I used step by step pictures and then the final project.  I am sure people were peeking in along the way but probably did not see the whole production process.  What they could tell was how good this recipe was.  

      I surprised the hubby with this following his lawn mowing activities.  Needless to say that we really didn’t sit down until about 7:15.  He had been traveling and I didn’t get home until about 5 or after.  This came together in about an hour total with the prep time and all.  A great quick meal for the 2 of us.


      1 tablespoon olive oil
      1 package (16 oz) boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces 
      1/4 teaspoon salt
      1/4 teaspoon pepper 
      1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
      3 1/2 cups  reduced sodium chicken broth (from 32-oz container)
      8 oz uncooked Rotelle  (Cork-screw shape)pasta (about 3 cups)
      4 oz (half of 8-oz package) cream cheese, cut into 1-inch cubes
      1/2 cup refrigerated basil pesto (from 7-oz container)
      1 package (8 oz) fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
      1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
      2 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese 
      In 5- to 5 1/2-quart Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat; season chicken with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cook chicken in oil 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken is no longer pink. With slotted spoon, transfer to plate, and keep warm.

      Add chicken broth and pasta to Dutch oven; heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to medium; simmer 12 to 14 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pasta is al-dente and most of liquid is absorbed.

      Add cream cheese and pesto, stirring frequently, until cheese is melted. Stir in chicken; cook 1 to 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until chicken is heated through.

      Gradually stir in spinach until starting to wilt. Just before serving, garnish with basil and Parmesan cheese.
      Dinner, Pasta

      Rigatoni and Pomadoro Sauce

      Looking for a simple and easy summer pasta dish? Look no further. This is easy to make and has awesome flavor.

      This was a hit with our pasta loving boy. Give it a try and let me know what you think?

      One 28-ounce can whole, peeled San Marzano tomatoes

      1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
      1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced
      Kosher salt
      8 ounces mezzi rigatoni
      2 tablespoons butter
      1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
      1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano
      1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, cut into chiffonade strips

      Puree the tomatoes using an immersion blender or food processor. Set aside.

      In a saucepot over medium heat, combine the olive oil, pepper flakes and garlic. Gently toast the garlic until golden brown, being careful not to burn it. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer; simmer 5 to 8 minutes.

      Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the rigatoni and cook for 2 minutes less than the package instructions. Reserve about 1/4 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta.

      Add the pasta to the pot with the sauce. Add 2 tablespoons of the reserved pasta water and cook until thickened, about 3 minutes. Add the butter, half of both cheeses and half of the basil and cook, tossing frequently, until the pasta is nicely coated. Season with salt if necessary.

      Transfer to a serving bowl, top with the remaining cheese and basil and drizzle with olive oil.


      Linguine and Shrimp Scampi

      “Joanne, what do you want for dinner?”  “Do you have any plans?”  “Will go with what your thinking”.  Three basic questions or statements that I hear quite often.  Well, guess what…I had a plan and it came out great!  
      Even recuperating from knee surgery that took place just over a week ago I pulled off a great dinner and a dessert.  (Paid for it the next day….)  We had shrimp in the freezer and all of the ingredients on hand.  We even had the dessert ingredients on hand too.  (Posting at a later date)
      Sauteing the shrimp in butter and olive oil.

      Vegetable oil 
      Kosher salt 
      1 1/2 pounds linguine 
      6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter 
      5 tablespoons good olive oil 
      3 tablespoons minced garlic (9 cloves) 
      2 pounds large shrimp (about 32 shrimp), peeled and deveined 
      1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
      3/4 cup chopped fresh parsley 
      Grated zest of 1 lemon 
      1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 lemons) 
      1/2 lemon, thinly sliced in half-rounds 
      1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
      Drizzle some oil in a large pot of boiling salted water, add 1 tablespoon of salt and the linguine, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, or according to the directions on the package.
      Meanwhile, in another large (12-inch), heavy-bottomed pan, melt the butter and olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic. Sauté for 1 minute. Be careful, the garlic burns easily! Add the shrimp, 1 tablespoon of salt, and the pepper and sauté until the shrimp have just turned pink, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat, add the parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, lemon slices, and red pepper flakes. Toss to combine.
      When the pasta is done, drain the cooked linguine and then put it back in the pot. Immediately add the shrimp and sauce, toss well, and serve. 

      Adding in spices, lemon juice and zest

      Combined with linguine 


      Skillet Ravioli Lasanga

      Ever sit and think about the ingredients you have on hand and wonder “what can I make with this”?  I knew I had sausage and frozen ravioli  in the freezer.  So I added these ingredients into the Yummly app and found this Skillet Ravioli Lasanga.  A quick stop at store for ricotta and within a half hour  we had dinner on the table.  This is a quick and hearty meal for a busy weeknight. Give it a try and tell me what you think. 
      1 lb. Hot Italian sausage, casings removed
      2 c. marinara
      1/2 c. water
      1 lb. cheese ravioli
      1 1/2 c. ricotta
      1 large egg
      kosher salt
      Freshly ground black pepper
      1 c. shredded mozzarella
      Heat broiler. In a cast-iron or ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat, cook sausage until browned and no longer pink, breaking it up with the back of a wooden spoon, 6 to 8 minutes. (Drain fat, if desired.) Add marinara and water to pan and bring to a simmer. Add ravioli and let simmer until ravioli is tender and sauce slightly thickens, 10 minutes.
      Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together ricotta and egg and season with salt and pepper. Drop spoonfuls of ricotta mixture all over the ravioli and let cook, 3 minutes.
      Sprinkle mozzarella all over, then transfer skillet to oven and broil until cheese is golden, 3 minutes. Let cool, 10 minutes, then serve.

      Dinner, Seafood

      Bang Bang Shrimp!

      We have a board on Pinterest specifically for seafood but we call it “Lenten Favorites”. Every Friday during Lent we either go out for a good fish fry or stay home and try out a new recipe. This recipe we actually made before Lent started and instantly knew that we had a new go to for our dinner selection.
      I have heard of Bang Bang Shrimp when we have been out to dinner, but never tried it. This interpretation did not disappoint and might be back on the table in the next few weeks. It was a team effort to make it and does have a kick. Give it a try and let me know what you think. Friday’s coming!


      8 ounces spaghetti
      8 ounces medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
      1 tablespoon olive oil
      3 cloves garlic, minced
      1 teaspoon smoked paprika, or more, to taste
      Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
      2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


      1/2 cup mayonnaise
      1/4 cup Thai sweet chili sauce
      2 cloves garlic, pressed
      Juice of 1/2 lime, or more, to taste
      1 teaspoon Sriracha, optional
      Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes


      To make the sauce, whisk together mayonnaise, Thai sweet chili sauce, garlic, lime juice, Sriracha and red pepper flakes; set aside.

      In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
      Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.

      Place shrimp onto the prepared baking sheet. Add olive oil, garlic, paprika, salt and pepper, to taste, and gently toss to combine. Place into oven and roast just until pink, firm and cooked through, about 6-8 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

      In a large bowl, combine pasta, shrimp and mayonnaise mixture.

      Serve immediately, garnished with parsley.