Dinners

Recipe—Spicy Shrimp

I have been making this shrimp recipe for years! It is definitely one of my favorite ways to enjoy the tasty crustacean. Shrimp are a great low calorie protein, perfect for any diet. This recipe certainly has a little kick to it, but nothing over the top. It’s the perfect balance of spices. This recipe takes less than 10 minutes total, making it a great recipe to enjoy after a long workday. I most recently served these with my mango and bok choy salad and some cilantro lime rice. They went great together! (My husband even went back for thirds!) I also frequently pair this with my mango salsa and grilled avocadoes for a fabulous healthy meal. Something about sweet tropical flavors and these spicy shrimp go so perfectly together. Give these a try, you won’t be disappointed.

Note: Colossal shrimp are exactly that, just extremely large shrimp. I like using them for this recipe but you can certainly use any size shrimp.

INGREDIENTS
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp garlic, minced
2 tsp paprika
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 lbs colossal shrimp, deveined and peeled

STEPS

  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Add the garlic, paprika, cumin, ginger, pepper, and salt.
  • Cook for 1–2 minutes stirring until it becomes a thick sauce.
  • Add the shrimp and cook for 4–6 minutes or until no longer transparent.
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Beverages

Recipe—Blended Mango Margaritas

It may technically be spring, but this diva is ready for summer (and Cinco de Mayo)! With the warmer months quickly approaching, there is no better way to beat the heat than with a homemade margarita. Until recently, I was a margarita purist. I rarely deviated from the traditional lime margarita, on the rocks, no salt. This week I had a couple of overly ripe mangoes that we never got around to eating. I decided to be adventurous and make my first ever mango margaritas. Oh. My. God. I am officially hooked on mango margaritas! These were the BEST margaritas I have ever had in my life! They were the perfect treat after we got home from a hot hike in the sun. My husband is a beer guy and he happily drank two of these fabulous concoctions. They were the perfect balance of sweet and tangy, intoxicating and perfectly drinkable. The texture from the mangoes makes these super smooth and almost creamy. So go dust off your blender, and give these fabulous mango margaritas a try! Add some island music, giant sunglasses, perhaps a cabana boy, and a batch of these margaritas and you are ready to ring in summer!

Note: Makes four margaritas.

INGREDIENTS
2 c fresh mangoes, chopped (Frozen mangoes may be substituted. See note below.)
1/2 c lime juice
1 c silver tequila
1/2 c orange liquor (I prefer Grand Marnier or Cointreau)
2 tsp sugar
2 c ice

Note: You can substitute frozen mangoes for fresh. However, if you decide to do so, be sure to start with one cup of ice and add more as needed while blending.

GARNISH
4 lime slices (for garnish)
2 tbsp sugar (to put on the rim of the glass)

STEPS

  • In a large blender combine the mango, lime juice, tequila, triple sec, sugar, and ice.
  • Blend until smooth. Add additional ice if needed to reach desired consistency.
  • Use one of the limes to wet the edge of the glasses.
  • Place the 2 tablespoons of sugar on a small plate and dip the rim of the glass into the sugar to coat all the way around.
  • Pour the margaritas into the glasses and store any extra in the freezer until ready to drink.

Looking for more creative margarita recipes? Maybe you will love these!

Grapefruit Margaritas on the Rocks

Salads

Recipe—Mango and Bok Choy Salad

My produce box was filled with lots of fabulous goodies this week. I had almost all the makings for a delicious tropical salad, bok choy, mango, and cilantro. Yum! While many recipes that include bok choy have you cook the leafy green it is also great for salads or slaws. Bok choy is light, sweet in flavor, and has a nice crisp texture. The nutritional value is also a huge plus. It’s high in Vitamins A, C, and K as well as calcium, potassium, magnesium, and it is low in calories. The dressing for this salad is sort of a citrusy vinaigrette that keeps the salad light and refreshing. This salad was the perfect cooling component for the spicy prawns I served with it. With all these bright colors I can’t help but think that this is the perfect dish for the coming spring and summer seasons.

Note: You can use a regular head of bok choy or about 4 baby boy choy. Baby book choy has a milder flavor but both will work well with this recipe.

INGREDIENTS
4 c bok choy, mostly greens with some stalks thinly sliced
1 1/2 c red cabbage, thinly sliced
2 mangos, diced
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 c fresh cilantro, chopped
3 tbsp rice vinegar
4 tbsp limejuice
1 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp soy sauce
1/4 tsp salt

STEPS

  • Combine the bok choy, cabbage, mango, celery, green onions, and cilantro in a large bowl.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the rice vinegar, limejuice, sugar, olive oil, soy sauce, and salt until most of the sugar and salt are dissolved.
  • Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine.
Sweet Treats

Recipe—Piña Colada Pie with Drunken Rum Sauce

Looking for that perfect summer dessert that takes you away to a tropical island? Then look no further! My piña colada pie is a little slice of paradise. This crust less pie could not be easier to make. You literally combine all the ingredients and put it in the oven to bake. It is a creamy custard based pie which is great all on it’s own but add in the drunken rum sauce and ooo-weeee! That’s good stuff, like a party in your mouth! I like to top mine with some homemade whip cream and crushed macadamia nuts to dress it up a bit. I made this for some friends the other night and they said it was like nothing they had ever had before (I am pretty sure it was a compliment). It is a one of a kind dessert that will make your mouth happy.

PIE INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 c heavy whipping cream
1/2 c sugar
6 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla
1/2 c flour
2 c shredded coconut
8 oz can crushed pineapple, drained

DRUNKEN RUM SAUCE INGREDIENTS
1 c butter
1 c Myers dark rum
1 c brown sugar

GARNISHES
whipped cream
crushed macadamia nuts

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine cream, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and flour.
  • Mix using a hand mixer for about 2 minutes on medium speed.
  • Fold in coconut and pineapple until completely combined.
  • Pour your pie mixture into a greased pie dish.
  • Bake for 40–45 minutes.
  • Remove pie from oven and allow to cool.
  • While pie is cooling start the rum sauce by melting the butter in a small saucepan.
  • Stir in brown sugar and whisk until sugar is dissolved.
  • Add in rum and bring to a gentle boil.
  • Turn heat to low and simmer for 2–3 minutes.
  • Pour sauce over a warm slice of pie and top with whipped cream and some macadamia nuts.
Appetizers, Sauces

Recipe—Mango Salsa

I have traveled to the Hawaiian Islands several times and I can’t even begin to describe how incredible the regional cuisine is. Hawaii is known for it’s tropical fruits grown in rich volcanic soil and some of the best quality fish in the world. Every time I make this vibrant colored salsa it takes me back to the islands. It goes great served with just tortilla chips, but pairs incredibly well with grilled fish, shrimp tacos, and crab cakes. Another favorite way to dish it up is over warmed Brie served with Triscuits. It may seem like more of a summer recipe, but I enjoy making it year round. Mix yourself up a refreshing Mai Tai and pretend like you are on an island getaway while you are enjoying this tropical treat.

INGREDIENTS
2 mangos, diced
1 jalapeño, diced (deseed the pepper if you don’t want it to be too hot)
1/4 red bell pepper, diced
1 green onion, chopped
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
2 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp sugar
pinch of salt

STEPS

  • Mix together mangos, jalapeño, red bell pepper, green onion, and cilantro.
  • In a separate small bowl mix together lemon juice, rice vinegar, sugar, and salt until sugar and salt are dissolved.
  • Pour liquid mixture over salsa and mix well.
  • Cover and allow to chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.

See my crab cake recipe here for a great pairing for this mango salsa (skip the spicy remoulade if serving with the mango salsa):
https://divadicucina.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/recipe-crab-cakes-with-spicy-remoulade/