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Shrimp Scampi




My spouse spent last Sunday successfully shrimping. Unsurprisingly, the shrimp made the scampi superb!


1 lb shrimp, de-headed but shells kept on
3 T olive oil
1/2 t dried pepper flakes
1/2 c dry white wine
1 t salt
4 T unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 package linguini
1/2 c chopped parsley


First, get a pot of boiling water ready. Have all your ingredients chopped and ready, and then start cooking the pasta. While it’s cooking, heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add the olive oil. Add the garlic and pepper flakes, and saute for about one minute. Add butter. Then add shrimp. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until all the shrimp are pink. Take off heat. When the pasta is cooked, drain all pasta water except one cup. Add the shrimp and butter liquid to the pasta (add the pasta water if it’s still a little “dry”, or drizzle with olive oil), and add parsley. Enjoy!

Shrimp with Dijon Dipping Sauce




Gary and I returned to Green Cove Springs this weekend to see if the shrimp were any larger. Still didn’t get as many as hoped, but got enough for dinner, which is good enough for me. The benefits to cooking shrimp shell-on is two-fold: 1) the juices stay inside the shell which makes them way tastier, and 2) it’s a cinch to make! After the water boils, you cook these guys for 3 minutes, and boom, you have dinner.

This recipe was amended from Epicurous.


1-2 lbs shell-on shrimp (heads on preferred)
1/4 c + 1 T Old Bay seasoning
1/4 c lemon juice
2 T olive oil
1 T parsley

4 T Dijon sauce
1 t lemon juice
1 t honey
1 T Worchestershire sauce
1 t hot sauce
1 T parsley


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt, lemon juice, and the 1/4 c of Old Bay seasoning, and bring to a boil. While this is heating, make your dipping sauce. Combine all ingredients and mix well. When the water in the pot is boiling, put the shrimp in the water. Cook for 3 minutes. Take out of the water, and put the shrimp into an ice bath to stop the cooking. Drain. Mix the olive oil and chopped parsley in a bowl. Pour over the cooked shrimp.

To eat, take off the head, peel off the shell, dip, and enjoy.


Shrimp Scampi




Gary fixed the boat! Yay! (Battery issues, not motor issues, thankfully.) So we took it out to see if the shrimp were ready for eating. We found some, not many, and they were pretty tiny. We found just enough for a meal for the two of us, and the handful we had left we gave to our friends Pat and Sally since they let us use their shrimping net. Their son, Lucas, gave us a drawing in return. His art was WAY worth the trip to find tiny shrimp, in my opinion.

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I amended this recipe from Epicurious.


1/4 c olive oil
1 lb peeled large shrimp
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 t dried hot red-pepper flakes
1/2 c dry white wine
5 T unsalted butter
3/4 lb pasta
1/2 c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Bring a 6- to 8-quart pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté shrimp, turning over once, until just cooked through, about 2 minutes, and transfer with a slotted spoon to a large bowl. Add garlic to oil remaining in skillet along with red pepper flakes, wine, salt, and pepper and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, 1 minute. Add butter to skillet, stirring until melted, and stir in shrimp. Remove skillet from heat.

Cook pasta in boiling water until just tender, about 3 minutes. Reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water, then drain pasta in a colander. Toss pasta well with shrimp mixture and parsley in large bowl, adding some of reserved cooking water if necessary to keep moist.

Shrimp Tacos





My comfort food isn’t fried chicken or ice cream or meat & potatoes; it’s instead spicy things inserted in a taco shell. There are countless permutations, and I’ll admit I probably love them all. Here is just one more to add to the list used with the shrimp from our summer catch and our numerous ripe limes. But feel free to add anything else you deem fit to wrap in a soft shell.


1 lb shrimp, peeled
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 lime, cut into wedges
1 T chili powder
1 t cumin
Olive oil
Dash of crushed red peppers
Avocado, cut into slices
1 package tortilla shells
Cheddar cheese


Chop your veggies, and peel your shrimp. Once finished, add the oil to a saute pan that has been heated to medium heat. Add all the spices to the hot oil, and stir for one minute. Add the vegetables, and cook for 5 minutes, or until they’re cooked. (While the veggies are cooking, heat up the tortillas.) Add the shrimp, and cook only for 3-4 minutes, or until pink throughout.

Serve on the tortilla with cheese, sliced avocado, cilantro, pickled peppers if you’d like, hot sauce, and the juice of a lime wedge.

Spicy Pineapple & Shrimp Skewers




Gary and I spent a Fab.U.Lous weekend in Charleston, South Carolina visiting my brother, Thomas. The architecture is adorable, the food is amazing; I didn’t want to leave. (If you head there soon, I highly recommend Xiao Bao Biscuit, Edmund’s Oast, and the Gin Joint. Ahhhhh, be still my beating heart!) Our own sleepy southern town does not rival Charleston’s fabulousness in food or aesthetics, unfortunately. But what Charleston has in charm, they lack in pineapples. That’s right, we can grow pineapples–PINEAPPLES!!–in our very own back yard!!


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPineapples are a bromeliad, which is a plant family that can capture and store water in their overlapping leaves. American colonists imported the fruit from the Caribbean as early as the 17th century. Because the trade routes were perilous, it was both a delicacy and an achievement to share a ripe pineapple with guests. Therefore, the pineapple became a symbol of hospitality. However, I should add that these early Southern Americans weren’t always the most hospitable; Thomas, Gary, and I toured a sobering building that used to be the slave market in Charleston where thousands upon thousands of slaves were sold, often ripped from their families to live and work in the most deplorable of conditions. That said, maybe a pineapple can be both a symbol of hospitality and a remembrance of those who were treated inhospitably.


Yes, this recipe is another dish with shrimp. This recipe came from the Food Network.

1 lb large shrimp
1 1/2 c pineapple chunks, either fresh or canned
1 red onion, chopped into chunks
1 green bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch squares
2/3 c pineapple juice
3 T lemon juice
3 T lime juice
1 T minced ginger
1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
2 T soy sauce
3 T honey
3 T chopped cilantro
8 wooden or metal skewers


Chop all the vegetables. Skewer the shrimp alternating with the pineapple, onion, and green pepper. In a small saucepan combine pineapple, lemon and lime juices with the ginger, jalapeno, soy sauce, and honey. Heat mixture over medium high heat and simmer until liquid is reduced by half. Brush or drizzle the kabobs with the pineapple glaze. Cook off in a hot cast iron grill pan or over an outdoor grill. Grill for 3 minutes per side and brush occasionally with the glaze. Serve over rice, and add chopped cilantro then.

Shrimp & Sausage & Grits




To continue celebrating the Libra birthdays, we had our friend Sam over for his. We had for dinner what he requested– sausage and gin and tonics–the two things Sam helped make. We added some frozen shrimp from our plethora now in the freezer and used the chorizo that we made from the boar, and we had a dinner worthy of a birthday celebration.

This recipe was crazy easy to make. If you take out the making-your-own-sausage and catching-your-own-shrimp part, this should only put you back about 15 minutes. I amended it from Emeril Lagasse.


2 T butter
1 T olive oil
3 T flour
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
S&P 1/4 t cayenne pepper
1 lb chorizo sausage
1 lb uncooked shrimp
3 c chicken broth
1/4 c green onions, chopped

2 c stone ground grits
6 c water
2 T butter


First, dump all your grits ingredients into a sauce pan. Bring to a boil. Once it’s at a boil, bring down to a simmer. Stir every so often but do not take off the heat until you’re ready to serve (otherwise it will form into a gelatinous glob).

To make the sauce, in a saute pan, melt the butter and add the oil. Stir in the flour and cook for 4-6 minutes to make a roux (the roux should look the color of peanut butter when it’s ready). Add the chopped regular onion, pepper, and celery. Add the salt, pepper, and cayenne. Next, add the sausage. (If you use link sausage, chop it up. I used ground in this recipe.) Cook until the sausage is done. Next add the broth. Bring the liquid to a boil, and then down to a simmer. Add the uncooked shrimp, cover the pan, and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the shrimp are pink and are cooked through. Add this all to a bowl of grits, and garnish with chopped green onions or parsley.

Shrimp Paella



So, if you’re sick of my shrimp recipes, sorry about that. If you’re like, yay, let’s have another, here’s one more to add to the repertoire!

Obviously, as shown below, from our shrimping extravaganza last weekend, we had PLENTY of shrimp. There’s bags of frozen ones in our freezer, too, for meals down the road. (Kaia, the four-legged one here, got in on some action, too.)


With our shrimp, we made paella. Paella is a Spanish dish that combines rice and seafood and is cooked often in a cast-iron skillet (the word paella is derived from the Latin word for “pan”.) My best memory of having paella was actually last summer when we were in France for my brother Thomas’s wedding to his French bride. There was a little grocery mart next door to our Paris flat that Gary, Thomas, and I got our ingredients from and made paella for the wedding crew who had come over from the states. Though the dish is Spanish, I remember it being divine. (We made it with chicken, which is pictured below in the white oval dish. Though looking at this picture, it seems as if everyone passed on the paella and instead took the spaghetti and red-sauce instead. ???? Well, from the looks on the faces, no one seems to mind.)


I got this recipe from


6 chicken thighs 
1 t chopped fresh rosemary
2 t vegetable oil
1 link hot Italian sausage
1 c chopped onion
1/2 c chopped red bell pepper
1 1/2 c uncooked Arborio rice
1/2 c diced plum tomato
1 t Hungarian hot paprika
1/4 t saffron threads, crushed
1 garlic clove, minced
3 c chicken broth
1 lb. large shrimp
1/2 c frozen green peas, thawed


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Season the chicken with the rosemary, and S&P. Heat the oil in a large cast-iron skillet (or one that can go in the oven) over medium-high heat. Add the chicken. Cook for 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove the chicken from pan. Next, chop the sausage and sauté them in the pan. Add the onion and bell pepper. Cook for about 7 minutes, stirring constantly. Add rice, tomato, paprika, saffron, and garlic; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Return the chicken to pan. Add the broth and bring to a boil (it will look really soupy, but the liquid will absorb in the oven when cooking). Cover the pan and bake at 400° for 20 minutes. Take out of the oven, and stir in the peas. Lay the shrimp on the top of the rice. Cover and bake an additional 10 minutes or until the shrimp are done.

Spiced Shrimp



My mom and brother Thomas were in town, so of course lots of fun/cooking/boating happened (but blogging, on the other hand, didn’t). As luck would have it, they were in town for one of the last shrimping weeks of the year, so we headed over to the river to get in on the action.

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Shrimping with a cast net takes a little finesse. To catch them, you need one with weights on the bottom. (I was going to go into the details about how to do this, but realized it’s WAY too complicated for me to explain. I was the photographer for this project, not the net thrower. For full instructions, refer to the Catfish Edge’s. He’s way more detailed than I could ever hope to be.)

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Nevertheless, if you’re successful with the net throw, it should sink to the bottom and catch shrimp along the way down. Once the net is pulled back up, they’re dumped in a bucket. You can see that they have beady red eyes and transparent bodies. The limit is a five-gallon bucket full for one boat.

Thomas made a great spiced shrimp recipe that was easy and added great flavor to the fresh shrimp.


1 1/2 lbs shrimp, unpeeled
3 scallions, chopped
2 cloves garlic
2 t coriander
1 t cumin
1/2 t cayenne pepper
1/2 t turmeric
3 T vegetable oil
1 t salt
2 t fresh lemon juice


In a bowl, mix together the scallions, garlic, coriander, cumin, cayenne, and turmeric. Add the shrimp and stir to coat. Cover, and refrigerate for half an hour.

Next, in a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, for two minutes. Season with the salt, add the lemon juice, and cook until opaque, or about one minute more. Top with chopped parsley for garnish.

We ate it outside, with polenta and salad, and toasted to family and reunions and good things.


Salt-Roasted Shrimp with Parsley Butter




Our boat adventure last weekend ended with a bucket full of shrimp! We went with our friends and their kids to the river to catch as many as we could.

Near the inlet of the St. John’s River in Florida is a place where the fresh water meets the sea. This time of year, the shrimp run is underway. From the end of July to the end of September, brown and white shrimp migrate from their inland nursery to their offshore spawning grounds. Boats gather to cast nets in the water to catch them.


{Our friend Pat, with a white shrimp.}


A big cast net with weights on the bottom is thrown off the side of the boat. Once it sinks to the bottom, it’s hoisted back up. Hopefully there will be shrimp caught in the net. Sometimes you get 15-30, other times there’s nothing there. The shrimp that are caught undulate and flip all over the boat. We keep the big ones, and throw them in a bucket full of water.


(I would have taken more pictures of the cast-net process, but some SUPER CUTE kids were distracting this photographer, so I came back with way more pictures of kids than shrimp. Next time.)

Our friend Sally told us about this recipe. It’s really simple, and if you don’t have to catch them yourself, it takes all of 15 minutes to prepare. I got the recipe off of Epicurious.


1/2 box rock salt
1 lb unpeeled large shrimp
1/3 c dry white wine
2 T fresh lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 c butter, chilled
1 T parsley


Heat the oven to 500 degrees. Spread half the salt on a baking dish until the bottom of the dish is covered. (You can use a glass 13 x 9″ pan.) Arrange the shrimp in a single layer on the top of the salt. Next, boil the wine, lemon juice, and garlic in a saucepan over medium-high heat until liquid is reduced to 1 tablespoon, or about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Add a few pieces of butter; whisk until creamy. Return pan to low heat. Add a few more pieces of butter; whisk until smooth (do not let mixture boil). Continue whisking in butter, a few pieces at a time. Stir in parsley; season with salt and pepper. Let stand while shrimp cook.

Roast shrimp on salt until just opaque in center and shells are pink, about 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer sauce to bowl. Serve the shrimp in another plate nestled in the rest of the rock salt. Dip the shrimp in the sauce once it’s peeled.

We brought them to a potluck where they were appreciated and devoured by all.


Shrimp and Lemongrass Soup



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Our lemongrass dies back in the winter, but come summertime, the stalks are back to their six-foot height. As I said before in an earlier post, lemongrass has been used to cure upset stomachs and help with digestion. I know this to be true since our dog, Kaia, eats lemongrass for this exact reason. She gets a gurgly stomach for nearly no reason at all; thunder, getting a bath, the words “going to the kennel” will all make her tummy growl. But once she’s let outside, she knows to go straight for the lemongrass, which often will quell her indigestion.

Paired with lemongrass, the shrimp and coconut milk make for a great summer soup. It’s not too heavy, but it still packs a lot of flavor. I got this recipe from the Blue Apron website.


2 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks lemongrass, one stalk minced, the other smashed but left in tact
1 piece ginger, chopped and pealed
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 limes, 1 zested and squeezed, and one for garnish
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 c rice
2 T red curry paste
1 13.5-oz can unsweetened coconut milk
2 cups chicken broth
1 c water
2 t sugar
10 oz shrimp
Cooking oil


First, start the rice. Combine 1 c water, a pinch of salt, and the 1/2 c rice in a bowl on the stove top. One it comes to a boil, bring the heat down to a simmer for 12-14 minutes. Next, wash and dry all the fresh ingredients. In a medium pot, heat 2 t of your cooking oil (I used coconut) over medium heat. Add the chopped garlic, ginger, the one minced stalk of lemongrass (remove hard exterior of the stalk first before chopping and discard), and green onion. Cook 1-2 minutes. Next add the chopped red pepper. Next, add the red curry paste. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Then add the coconut milk, broth, water, sugar, lime zest and juice, and smashed lemongrass stalk (with hard exterior removed). Reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook for 3-4 minutes. Throw in the shrimp (you can choose to either keep the peal on, or peal them before you throw them in the soup). Cook for 8-10 minutes.

Discard the stalk of lemongrass, and garnish each bowl with a scoop of rice, cilantro, and the juice from the other lime cut into wedges.

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