Monday, February 15, 2010

Valentine's Day

The day of romance.  I hope you cooked your honey the sticky buns for breakfast this morning.  To futher show off your culinary prowess, I offer you a simple recipe that is guaranteed to wow every time.

(Warning:  slightly off-topic rambling ahead)
This was the first meal I cooked for my husband.  Of course, he wasn't my husband back then - he was just a cute guy who I had gone out with a few times (the first date was a picnic in Harriman State Park - I made roast beef sandwiches, home made potato salad, and I think chocolate chip cookies) and I loved to cook. The guy obviously did NOT know how to cook, judging from the cupboards in his apartment (bare except for Oreo cookies, cans of Campbell's Tomato Soup, and tea) and being a sucker for a guy longing for a home cooked meal, I decided to oblige.  I could have sworn I got this recipe out of the "Vegetarian Epicure" cookbook, but I have  looked for it in there numerous times since then, and it's just disappeared.  Maybe because the recipe has shrimp in it, it realized it doesn't really belong in a vegetarian cookbook, and decided to try and find its way to "Kooking Kooky Krustaceans" instead.  Over the years, I'm sure it's evolved, so now it's my recipe and I've adopted it (who wants to be in a cookbook called "Kooking Kooky Krustaceans" anyway??)

This recipe is perfect for a quiet, romantic evening.  It's also perfect if you are exhausted from a busy day at work and feel like you can't do another thing.  It's perfect for company, it's perfect for friends.  Perhaps I should call it "The Perfect Shrimp" instead of "Shrimp-with Honey/Mustard glaze".  This recipe is also perfect for spreading your experimental wings.  Do you like more of a bite? use a hotter mustard.  Do you like it sweet? use more honey.  Taste the sauce.  Don't be afraid to adjust and taste, adjust and taste until you get the hang of it. Remember it's going to be spread on the shrimp, so don't let a strong sweet/tangy taste worry you.  I like an even blend of sweet and tangy, so I use equal amounts of mustard and honey.  I also love curry (remember my post about "Teen crushes and what that has to do with my love for cooking") and there is curry powder in the glaze as well.  This is an extremely hard dish to mess up.  It's absolutely delish.  Serve it with a salad, rice pilaf, and a nice white wine, and you are set.  If you are entertaining, skewer the shrimp, glaze them, cover them and let them sit before your company comes, and have hubby throw them on the barbie.  You can make the salad ahead of time, all you'll need to do is throw some rice in the microwave, and you'll be able to devote time to your friends stress-free.

If you don't have a microwave rice cooker, and you have a microwave, shame on you! It's the EASIEST and most foolproof way to make rice.  You can add spices, broth, veggies to the rice cooker with your rice.   It comes out fluffy every time.  I love my rice cooker!  13 minutes, and it's DONE.  HERE is a link to one that looks almost exactly like mine at  $9.99 well spent!  Kohl's also has one that is similar by Nordicware for about the same price.  Easy clean up, dishwasher safe, and perfect rice - What more could you want?   Plus, there is another perfect opportunity to allow your budding culinary imagination to run wild.  Throw a bunch of fresh chopped parsley in with your white rice - Season it with some Seasonello....or cook it in chicken broth, add some curry powder, finely chopped carrot, and a handful of frozen peas, and serve with curry.  You get the idea! :)  Here is a pic of the rice I made tonight - see? perfect! :)

Ahh...did it again...rambling rhapsodically about rice, when this blog entry is about Shrimp! my bad! Without further recipe for:

The Perfect Shrimp (printable recipe HERE)

1 pound raw extra large shrimp, deveined, shelled (that means shells OFF kiddies!)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup spicy brown mustard (Like Gulden's)
1 tsp. curry powder

Skewer the shrimp on sticks - either kebab sticks, or bamboo skewers you have soaked for at least 20 minutes in water.  Mix the honey, mustard, and curry together, and brush on the shrimp, covering them well with the glaze.  (Side note here:  Use spicy brown mustard - I don't recommend the yellow, it's not flavorful enough to stand up against the honey.  Neither is stone ground mustard, unfortunately. I tried that tonight - It was still very good, except the curry flavor came out a bit more)

Place on the grill glazed side down, then baste the top of the shrimp with the glaze, and again after you turn them ( it will only take about 2-3 minutes for each side - the shrimp will no longer be translucent)

baste again, and baste once more before serving.  Easy!  Enjoy!
*note*I threw the lemon in the ingredients pic, because a) it looked pretty and b) some people cannot eat seafood without lemon, but I suggest tasting the shrimp first - you won't need the lemon - put it in your sweet tea instead! :)



    I'm going to go make oatmeal....

  2. omgomgomg. i'm so hungry too. i want this in my stomach now.
    i don't know what to make next!!!!!!!
    next time i'm not working a night i might just make a feast of all your food lol.

  3. LOL Tina! then you'd have a lot of leftovers :-)