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A Picture- Less Posting of Recipes – Fried Shrimp and Sweet Potato Oven Fries

After taking a nice long break for the Labor Day weekend, I am ready to get back to posting some recipes. There are times where I try out and cooked different recipes and just get caught up in the moment or daily life and forget to take pictures of whatever it is that I have made that day. This leaves me with a bunch of recipes that I do not have pictures for but that I have actually tried. I do not really like to post recipes without posting a picture that goes along with them, even though most of the pictures that I take are hardly what I would call “professional grade” and probably do not make that much of a difference. However I do like to show pictures of that people reading do know that I have actually tried out the recipe being posted so they can see what it looks like when I do it. That being said I do have some recent recipes I have tried that I either failed to take pictures of or, since I recently had to reset my iPhone, have lost pictures along the way because they were still on my phone before I could transfer them over to the computer. Two such recipes are those that I have tried from New York Times Cooking from Mark Bittman and Jonathan Reynolds. They are recipes for oven baked sweet potato fries and for a very basic fried shrimp. Both are very simple to make and allowed me to have a very quick dinner one night when we were scrambling around trying to find something to do.

Oven Sweet Potato Fries

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the sweet potatoes into sticks  of about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide and 3 inches long, and toss them with the olive oil.

Mix the garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper in a small bowl, and toss them with the sweet potatoes. Spread the sweet potatoes out on 2 rimmed baking sheets lines with parchment paper.

Bake the sweet potatoes until they are brown and crisp on the bottom, about 15 minutes, then flip the potatoes and cook them until the other side is crisp, about 10 minutes longer. Serve the potatoes hot.

This was a very easy recipe to follow and do and provides you with a perfect alternative to actually frying the potatoes. All they needed was that little bit of olive oil to really make them come out crisp and tasty. They were the perfect accompaniment to a fast fried shrimp recipe.

Basic Fried Shrimp

1/4 cup vegetable or peanut oil for frying

2 pounds small, large or jumbo shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails intact

1 cup milk

2 large eggs

1 cup cracker meal, breadcrumbs (fresh or store-bought) or 1 cup of crushed crackers

In a large cast iron skillet or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat until it reaches 365 degrees on an instant-read thermometer or candy thermometer inserted into the oil.

Place the shrimp in a medium bowl. Mix the milk and eggs in a glass measuring cup with a fork until they are well blended and pour the mixture over the shrimp. Toss the shrimp until they are well coated and drain the shrimp in a colander.

Roll the shrimp in the cracker meal or breadcrumbs and shake off  any excess.

Fry the shrimp in the oil until they are golden in color, turning the shrimp as necessary, about 1 to 2 minutes total. Remove the shrimp from the pan with a strainer or Chinese spider (also called a skimmer) and shake off the excess oil. Serve the shrimp with tartar sauce or cocktail sauce, if desired.

You could always spice up the shrimp a bit by adding some other spices like paprika, chili powder, Old Bay seasoning or any other spices that you might like. Mix the spices in with the breadcrumbs and they will pick up the flavor nicely. The shrimp take no time at all to cook and you may have to do them in batches if you make the full two pounds so you do not overcrowd the pan. They go very well with tartar sauce or cocktail sauce and would even be perfect to have in a po’boy sandwich or even over a salad or with a steak. I’m sorry I don’t have any pictures of them; they came out quite nicely, with a nice golden brown color and great flavor to them since I had purchased some Wild American shrimp and used them for the recipe.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!




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Posted by on September 6, 2016 in Cooking, Dinner, Potatoes, Seafood


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Kid Friendly and a Healthier Option – Oven Fried Shrimp

Any time that  I get some shrimp Sean is always asking me to make fried shrimp. Not that I don’t like fried shrimp, I love it myself; the problem is that I hate cooking with all of that oil from a health standpoint and clean up standpoint and there are other ways to cook shrimp that I love as well. He however, has a hang up on fried shrimp so when Michelle is traveling, I very often will get some shrimp and make something for dinner (Michelle likes shrimp, but they are not a favorite of hers, so she would just as soon not have them anyway). I had seen some recipes for oven fried shrimp before but none of them ever really looked like the breading or coating held up that well or cooked well so you got a good coating on them until I saw this recipe from Williams-Sonoma for oven fried shrimp. The picture looked pretty good and the recipe seemed simple enough, so I thought I would give it a try.

Oven Fried Shrimp

1 cup ketchup-style chili sauce or ketchup

2 tablespoons drained prepared horseradish

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Hot pepper sauce

1 1/4 cups panko or other dried breadcrumbs

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 tablespoons butter, melted

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined

To make the cocktail sauce, stir together the chili sauce or ketchup, the horseradish and the melon zest and lemon juice in a small bowl. Season the sauce with hot pepper sauce to taste. Set the cocktail sauce aside.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil a large rimmed baking sheet. In a medium bowl, stir together the bread crumbs, paprika, oregano, basil, thyme, garlic, salt and cayenne pepper. In another bowl, mix together the melted butter and the olive oil. Working in batches, toss the shrimp in the butter mixture to coat it well and then coat the shrimp with the bread crumb mixture, shaking off any excess. Spread the shrimp in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake the shrimp until the coating is golden brown and the shrimp are opaque throughout when they are pierced with the tip of a knife, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the cocktail sauce to individual small bowls for dipping. Serve the shrimp with the sauce on the side.

This is very simple and turns out a pretty good coating for the shrimp. I used basic bread crumbs, but I think the coating would be even better with panko and will try it that way next time to see how it is. If you wanted to jazz things up a bit and make these coconut shrimp, you could try mixing in some shredded coconut with the breadcrumb mixture or even substituting it completely for the bread crumbs and following the recipe as indicated. Personally, I am not a fan of coconut myself, but a lot of people love the coconut shrimp. You can then make or buy your favorite sweet chili sauce for dipping instead of the cocktail sauce. I made this as our entrée for the meal and served it with some rice and vegetables, but it would be a great appetizer for any time. I liked the shrimp and the cocktail sauce in this one and Sean gobbled these up as well, so I think the recipe is a pretty good alternative to frying the shrimp and using all of that oil.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!




Posted by on November 5, 2014 in Appetizers, Cooking, Dinner, Sauce, Seafood


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A Simple Snack or Meal – Fried Shrimp with Homemade Cocktail Sauce

I love to make shrimp and now that Sean has a good appreciation for it as well since he has gotten older, we have it a little more frequently than we did in the past. Of course, Sean’s favorite way to have it is as fried shrimp. I don’t often make it this way because I try to stay away from doing too much frying these days, but every once in a while I do have to indulge him and make some nice, crispy fried shrimp. It is very easy to do only they only take a minute or two to make and will test better than any of the things you can buy in the grocer’s freezer that are already breaded and ready to be cooked. This recipe is sort of combination of recipes I got from Food Network and Williams-Sonoma, and you can certainly convert it into oven frying if you want to go that way instead. I also made an easy cocktail sauce to go along with it.

Fried Shrimp and Cocktail Sauce

For the Cocktail Sauce:

1 cup ketchup or chili sauce

2 tablespoons drained, prepared horseradish

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Hot sauce (optional)

For the Shrimp:

1 1/4 cups panko or other dried bread crumbs

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cornstarch

2 eggs

1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined

Vegetable oil, for frying

To make the cocktail sauce, in a small bowl stir together the chili sauce or ketchup, the horseradish, lemon zest and lemon juice until blended. Season the sauce with hot sauce, if desired. Set the sauce aside.

For the shrimp, heat about 2 inches of the vegetable oil in a heavy-bottomed pot, Dutch oven or large cast-iron skillet over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees. Meanwhile, in a large bowl stir together the bread crumbs, paprika, basil, oregano, thyme garlic, salt and cayenne pepper. In a separate shallow bowl whisk together the all-purpose flour and the cornstarch. Finally, in a third shallow bowl whisk the eggs.

Working in batches, dredge the shrimp in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess, then sip the shrimp in the egg mixture, again shaking off any excess, and then dip the shrimp in the bread crumb mixture, turning the shrimp to form a thick crust. Fry the shrimp in the hot oil until it is lightly golden, about 1 to 2 minutes total, adjusting the heat as necessary to maintain the oil temperature. Transfer the shrimp to a paper towel-lined plate with a slotted spoon and continue frying the shrimp until it is all fried.

Transfer the cocktail sauce to individual bowls for dipping and serve the shrimp.

These shrimp turn out with a great coating that has really good flavor and crunch when they are done. You want to be careful not to overcook the shrimp and burn the coating or make the shrimp rubbery. They only need a minute or two at the most to get really golden brown. These are great as an appetizer for a party or to serve on a buffet just as well as you can make them for dinner. The cocktail sauce is also very easy and will stay stored in the fridge so you can use it with other fish meals or instead of regular ketchup.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for some more great recipes. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!



Posted by on April 6, 2014 in Appetizers, Cooking, Dinner, Seafood


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