Category Archives: Seafood

{Skinny} Bang Bang Shrimp

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Hello everyone! I feel like I haven’t updated in ages. Things around here have been a bit hectic lately. Not to mention that I  briefly went through a weird phase where I lacked inspiration and motivation to cook, and when I did, I often didn’t enjoy whatever I made. This was especially strange for me because I usually love cooking and love eating. I think I chalked it up to being busy and stressed, and have been feeling back to normal the past week – phew!

Anywho, I had a few ideas of what to post today but when I saw shrimp on sale at the store I immediately knew what I wanted to make. Recently I’ve seen a lot of recipes for “Bang Bang Shrimp” and they always catch my eye. It’s a dish that includes crispy, breaded shrimp served with a creamy and spicy chili sauce. This dish is served at Bonefish Grill, a restaurant I’ve never been to and therefore have not actually tried the original recipe, but I could tell from the ingredients that I would love it.

I was even more inspired when I saw a lightened up version of the dish over at Cooking for Keeps. I followed this recipe pretty closely, though I opted for Greek yogurt over mayo for the sauce and used regular flour instead of almond flour. I also added a bit of teriyaki sauce which I thought bumped the sauce up a notch. The sauce is rich and flavorful, all while being light on calories. Breading the shrimp is optional – I very lightly breaded mine in flour and cooked them in a bit of coconut butter which was delicious!

I also love this recipe because it looks fancy, but takes less than 30 minutes to make! You can used thawed frozen shrimp and store-bought chili sauce to make the recipe even easier, and I bet you nobody will know the difference. 🙂

Skinny Bang Bang Shrimp
adapted from Skinny Bang Bang Shrimp with Homemade Sweet Chili Sauce on Cooking for Keeps

Ingredients:
serves 2

  • 1/2 lb large, raw shrimp (about a 12-count), peeled & de-veined
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 Tbsp oil (I used coconut, but olive or canola work too)
    For the sauce:
  • 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 Tbsp sweet chili sauce (I like Frank’s brand)
  • 1 Tbsp teriyaki sauce
  • 1 tsp Sriracha (2 if you like things spicy)
  • 2 green onions, diced
  • Rice to serve on the side

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Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the ingredients for the sauce and whisk. Set aside.
  2. In a large frying pan, heat your oil over medium heat. Toss the shrimp in the flour and gently place in the hot oil. Fry on each side for 1 – 2 minutes, or until shrimp is pink and breading is crispy.
  3. Turn the heat down to low and pour the sauce over the shrimp. Cook for an additional minute or so, until the sauce is hot. Serve over rice and optional veggie, and enjoy!
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Start by preparing your sauce!

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Lightly coat your shrimp in flour

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Frizzle up your shrimp in the hot oil

 

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It will look something like this when it’s finished cooking!

 

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Pour sauce over your shrimp, cook for another minute, and it’s ready to serve!

 

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🙂

Easy One-Pot Pad Thai

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I’m back with another internet recipe. Maybe I’m not feeling especially creative in the cooking department lately, but that’s okay because this recipe is awesome and it’s a technique I think everyone should know about.

If you frequent Pinterest or cooking websites as much as I do, you may have seen the One Pot method of cooking pasta. The pasta and toppings – such as tomatoes, onions, and basil – are all cooked together in one pot and the liquid evaporates by the end, making for one flavorful pasta. This method kind of blew my mind. It almost doesn’t seem like it should work, but after reading through dozens of comments on the blog, I saw how satisfied people were with the recipe and thought maybe I would try it.

Then I stumbled upon One Pot Wonder Thai Style Peanut Pasta and knew I had to make it. A Pad Thai-style dish, all made in one pot and under 20 minutes? Yes please! My family loves Pad Thai and usually gets four orders of it when we get Thai take-out. I’ve been toying with the idea of making my own Pad Thai for a while now, but often the ingredients can be somewhat obscure and the recipe intimidating. I was a bit skeptical that this one-pot method would work – what if there was too much liquid left at the end and the noodles were soggy? – but this recipe also had many positive comments and so off I was to cook it.

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I have to say, I couldn’t be more pleased with how this dish came out. It may not be 100% authentic Pad Thai, but it was sure packed with flavor and one of the best dishes I’ve had in a while. Noodles and veggies are cooked in a broth with peanut sauce and other Asian flavors, and come together to make a delicious dish reminiscent of Pad Thai. I adjusted the original recipe slightly to suit my taste, but mainly stayed true to it. I also added some shrimp to mine, which I thought complimented the dish well, but alternatively you could add chicken, tofu, or just stick with the noodles!

Easy One-Pot Pad Thai
adapted from One Pot Wonder Thai Style Peanut Pasta Recipe on Apron Strings

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Ingredients:makes 5 – 6 servings

  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12 oz. fettucine or linguine*
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • Peanut Sauce:
    • 2 Tbsp peanut butter (I used crunchy)
    • 1.5 Tbsp soy sauce (or fish sauce for a more authentic flavor)**
    • 1.5 Tbsp brown sugar
    • 1 Tbsp honey
    • 1 tsp sesame oil
    • 1 tsp curry paste
    • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
  • 4 cups chicken or veggie stock (or water)
  • optional: 1 lb. raw shrimp, shells removed
  • juice of 1 lime (about 1.5 – 2 Tbsp)
  • to serve: extra scallions, chopped cilantro, and peanuts

*Most dried pasta comes in 16 oz. packages – just use your best judgment to take 3/4 of the box. Also, white pasta is recommended for this recipe as whole grain or rice pasta has differing cooking times.

**In addition to fish sauce, authentic Pad Thai also uses tamarind paste, a sour-flavored condiment that can be found at Asian grocers, and bean sprouts. Feel free to add these things if they’re available to you!

Directions:

  1. In a large (3 – 4 quart) pot, heat 1 Tbsp canola or olive oil over low heat. Add sliced onions and cook for about 10 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally. Add minced garlic and ginger and cook for an additional 3 – 4 minutes. Turn off heat.
  2. Add the noodles on top off the cooked onions, garlic and ginger, along with the veggies, scallions, and peanut sauce. Pour your 4 cups of chicken or veggies stock on top. Cover with a lid and turn heat up to high. Once it’s boiling, return to a simmer and cover loosely with lid so some steam can escape.
  3. Cook for 10 – 12 minutes, or until most of liquid has evaporated, stirring every 2 minutes. If including shrimp, add halfway through cook time. Dish is done once pasta is cooked and a small amount of liquid remains at the bottom (it’s good to keep some liquid – it makes for a nice gravy over the pasta).
  4. Serve with extra scallions, cilantro, and chopped peanuts and enjoy!
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Begin by sauteing your onions, garlic, and ginger.

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Place noodles on top of cooked onions, along with veggies, scallions, and peanut sauce. Cover with the 4 cups of stock or water and bring to a boil, covered.

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Once boiling, return to a simmer and cover loosely with a lid. Cook for 10 – 12 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes, until pasta is cooked and most of liquid has evaporated. If using shrimp, add halfway through cook time.

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It’s okay to leave a little liquid at the bottom – it’s tasty and makes for a nice sauce over the noodles.

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The finished product!

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Add the chopped scallions, cilantro, and peanuts and enjoy!

Spicy Tuna Wrap

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This recipe was inspired, as you may have guessed, by the spicy tuna sushi roll. I’ve been preparing tuna salad this way for about a year now, but it only occurred to me recently that with a few extra ingredients it could taste a lot like my favorite type of sushi.

Spicy Tuna Rolls typically include tuna in a spicy sauce, something crunchy like cucumber, and often avocado. My Spicy Tuna Wrap uses teriyaki sauce and Sriracha to give the tuna a spicy Asian twist, and includes vegetables like carrots, red bell peppers, radishes, avocado, and spinach in place of seaweed. It’s perfect for when you’re craving sushi without any in reach, or for those who are hesitant to try real sushi. The spicy tuna mixture is also delicious on a salad!

To make the preparation of this wrap quicker, I recommend refrigerating your can of tuna beforehand. I do this often so I don’t need to wait for my tuna salad to chill in the fridge when I’m hungry!

Spicy Tuna Wrap
makes 1 wrap

Ingredients:

  • 1 5 oz. can of tuna, drained
  • 1 Tbsp light mayonnaise or Greek yogurt (I recommend mayo for a more authentic flavor)
  • 1.5 tsp teriyaki sauce
  • 1 tsp Sambel Oelek chili paste or Sriracha
  • 1 tsp sweet chili sauce (honey or brown sugar would work as well)
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced into strips
  • 1/3 cup assorted crunchy veggies, sliced into matchsticks (I recommend carrots, red bell pepper, and cucumber or radishes)
  • small handful of fresh spinach
  • 1 8-inch flour tortilla
  • optional: sesame seeds and red pepper flakes to garnish
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Ingredients for the spicy tuna

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ingredients for the wrap

Directions:

To prepare the spicy tuna mixture, mix together your drained tuna, mayo, teriyaki sauce, chili paste, chili sauce and green onions. Stir to combine and refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour if not previously chilled.

Begin to build your wrap by spreading tuna along the middle of your tortilla in a straight line, and layer your avocado, veggies, and spinach on top. Roll up tightly and enjoy!

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Combine the ingredients for the spicy tuna in a small bowl

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And mix together until combined. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 – 60 minutes if not previously chilled.

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Build your wrap by placing the spicy tuna in the middle of the tortilla, and layering avocado, veggies, and spinach on top. Garnish with sesame seeds and/or red pepper flakes if desired and roll up tightly.

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🙂

Asian Sesame Salmon

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For the past few weeks, salmon has been on sale for $6.99/lb at my local grocery store (normally $9.99) and has given me the perfect excuse to incorporate more fish into my diet. With my love of seafood, I was surprised to realize I’ve never posted a seafood recipe on this blog!

Growing up near the ocean, we frequently ate fresh seafood – everything from shrimp to scallops to fish. My dad, the foodie, has all types of ways of preparing fish. His baked cod and swordfish were among our favorites. We ate salmon a little less often, but I always thoroughly enjoyed it each time and it became one of my favorites.

I first made this recipe either last year or the year before, and I never forget how good it was. The recipe originally comes from one of those McCormick Recipe Inspirations packets – the kind that come with pre-measured spices for a specific recipe, and you add the fresh ingredients yourself. I’ve had great luck with a number of those recipes and definitely recommend them. They can be found in the baking or spice aisle of most grocery stores. The Asian Sesame Salmon has been floating around in my brain lately, so I decided to re-create it on my own.

When it comes to fish, salmon is just about as healthy as it can get. Salmon is full of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are heart-healthy fats and can help lower cholesterol. Not only is it packed with vitamins B and D, but it’s also a great source of protein: one 4-oz portion contains over half of your daily recommended intake! To read more about the health benefits of salmon, click here.

This Asian Sesame Salmon is glazed with a sweet and savory sauce consisting of honey, soy sauce, and sesame seeds. Salmon is naturally packed with flavor, but the Asian marinade in this recipe perfectly complements its richness. I kept pretty true to the recipe, but added fresh lime juice and some crushed red pepper to kick it up a notch. I chose to serve my salmon with steamed broccoli and brown rice, but you may serve it alongside whatever you like. I found this meal to be incredibly filling and satisfying – definitely one of my favorites I’ve posted on this blog so far!

Asian Sesame Salmon
adapted from McCormick Recipe Inspirations Asian Sesame Salmon

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Ingredients:
serves 2

  • For the sauce:
    • 1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
    • 1 Tbsp lime juice
    • 2.5 Tbsp honey (brown sugar would also work)
    • 1 tsp sesame seeds
    • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
    • 1/4 tsp minced or ground ginger
    • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes or Sambal Oelek
    • 3 Tbsp chopped scallions
  • 1 pound fresh salmon filet
  • Optional: serve with steamed broccoli and brown rice

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Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF and lightly grease a baking dish lined with foil. Prepare the sauce by combining all ingredients in a small bowl and whisking together.
  2. Place the salmon the the greased baking dish and pour the sauce over it. Bake for 20-25 minutes, basting the fish once or twice with the sauce, until salmon is cooked throughout and flakes easily with the touch of a fork.
  3. Serve with steamed broccoli and brown rice and enjoy 🙂
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To prepare the sauce, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and stir. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

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Place the salmon (skin side down) on a lightly greased foil-lined baking dish. Pour the sauce over the salmon and spread around so salmon is evenly coated.

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Bake salmon for 20-25 minutes.

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Salmon is done when it’s cooked throughout and can be flaked easily with a fork. Don’t worry if white stuff appears on your fish after baking like mine did, it’s just the fatty part of the salmon rising to the top.

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Serve with steamed broccoli and rice for a complete meal 🙂

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