Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Our Valentine's Dinner

I love putting together simple yet delicious meals for holidays. Sometimes I like giving them names too, I'm weird like that. This one is called "No such thing as too much shrimp."

Shrimp Appetizer

I posted this recipe last year. But I make it every year for Valentine's Day, so I'm posting it again this year. I love this stuff, it's so delicious!

8 oz. cream cheese
Cocktail sauce
1 can tiny shrimp, drained
Buttery snack crackers (Ritz, Town House, etc)

Place cream cheese on serving platter. Pour about 2/3 cup cocktail sauce on top, and top with shrimp. Serve with crackers.

Garlic Ginger Shrimp

I got this recipe from Angie, The American Homemaker. I attended her cooking class at the Pleasant Grove Macey's last week, and really enjoyed this recipe. I figured it would be perfect for Valentine's Day. It's a little pricier than my usual meals, but not by much. Besides, it was a special occasion.

1 1/2 tsp. ginger
4 cloves garlic (2 tsp. bottled)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
3 tsp. parsley
2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. salt (this wasn't in the original recipe, but it needed it)
3 tsp. cornstarch
2 tbsp. cold water
1 lb. raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 package angel hair pasta (I used spaghetti)

Start water boiling for pasta.

In a large skillet, saute ginger and garlic in butter and oil for about one minute. Stir in broth, 1 1/2 tsp. parsley, and basil.

Combine cornstarch and water until smooth. Add to skillet. Bring to a boil. Cook and stir for two minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat; add rinsed shrimp. Simmer for two to three minutes or until the shrimp turn pink.

Meanwhile, cook pasta. Add sauce to cooked and drained pasta. Sprinkle with remaining parsley.


Of course, we also had a simple salad, to round out the meal. Five-lettuce mix with chopped oranges and a honey mustard dressing. Colorful and yummy.

Chocolate Almond Pudding Cake

This was a fantastic ending to a delicious meal. It's a slightly healthified version, with less sugar and oil. It was rich and indulgent, but not overly so. Perfect with vanilla ice cream.

1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup chopped almonds
1/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp. canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. almond extract
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1 3/4 cups water
Vanilla ice cream, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 8-inch square (2-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray. In medium bowl, mix flour, granulated sugar, almonds, 1/4 cup cocoa, the baking powder and salt. Stir in milk, oil, vanilla and almond extract until blended. Spread batter in pan.

In 1-quart saucepan, mix brown sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa with wire whisk. Stir in water; heat just to boiling, stirring occasionally. Pour over batter.

Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until center is set. Cool 30 minutes before serving (Haha, yeah right. We at it right away).

To serve, spoon warm cake into individual dessert bowls; spoon pudding from baking dish over cake. Serve with ice cream.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Butter Rolls

This title is a bit deceptive. These are much richer and sweeter and more delicious than the name implies. I got this recipe from Southern Plate (I love that website!), and like every recipe of Christy's that I try, it turned out fantastic. I admit that it's not the prettiest thing, but yum....

Butter Rolls
2 cups self-rising flour (add 1 tsp. salt and 1 tbsp. baking powder)
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup milk (we have a dry climate so I had to use 3/4 cup)
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter or margarine
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

Milk Sauce
2 cups milk
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Cut shortening into flour really well with a fork. Stir in milk. On a floured surface, dump out dough and press together with your hands to form a ball. Roll out into a rectangle (about 7×10 in size). Spread softened butter over dough and then sprinkle 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon over top. Roll it up like a jelly roll and press it together lightly. Cut into nine slices about one inch thick each. Place into a lightly greased 8×8 baking dish.

In medium sauce pot, combine all milk sauce ingredients. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to bubble lightly. Pour over rolls in pan. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes, or until rolls are lightly browned on top.

Allow to sit for a few minutes once it is done for the rolls to soak up more sauce. After you put each roll on a plate, spoon more sauce over it.

Holy cow, these turned out so incredible. Though Zaylee took it upon herself after eating to remind me that "too much sugar is not good for you." Yeah, these are definitely not an every day meal. :-)