Shrimp & Fish

Fresh Quinoa Salad

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Did you see it?

I posted this delicious little diddy on Modern Hen Home’s Facebook page last week.

It’s the perfect salad in my opinion — sweet, savory, crunchy, creamy, healthy.

Anything but boring!

And while my husband had sesame ginger salmon sizzling on the grill, I poked a few holes in an extra large sweet potato with a fork, zapped it in the microwave for 5 minutes, split it down the middle and added a pat of butter on both sides for us to share.

Wallah… dinner served!

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Quick and easy gourmet that doesn’t break the bank and takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. I found the sesame ginger marinade at Kroger near the salad dressings.

Fresh Quinoa Salad

1 cup Quinoa (cooked as directed & cooled)
To serving bowl add:
1/2 English cucumber, diced
1 green onion, chopped
1 small bunch cilantro, chopped
half avocado, diced
6 cherry tomatoes, halved
juice from half lemon
1/4 cup Greek dressing (or to taste)
1/4 cup Cranberry Raisins
1/8 tsp kosher salt
pinch black pepper

Toss and enjoy!

Oh and please stop by to visit me on the Facebook page…

I’d love to meet you there!

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Summer Orzo with Shrimp


This dish is a light mix of petite pasta, grilled shrimp, fresh summer vegetables and herbs. I skewered and grilled the shrimp on our indoor grill after basting with olive oil to keep preparation simple. Any of your favorite herbs and vegetables will work of course and sliced fresh avocado would be an amazing addition.


Summer Orzo with Shrimp

1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
4 cups fresh corn kernels (about 6 ears), or frozen whole-kernel corn
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (16 oz) package orzo pasta, cooked according to package directions, drained and cooled
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
2 large green onions or shallots, minced
3 tbsp red wine vinegar or balsamic
1 large lemon, juiced and zested
2 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
2 cups grilled shrimp

In large skillet over high heat, add 2 tablespoons oil and corn and sauté 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes more. Let cool.

In large bowl, combine corn, cooked orzo, yellow peppers, tomatoes, basil and stir well. In a medium bowl, combine onions, 1/2 cup olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice and zest, salt and pepper; whisk to combine. Pour dressing over salad and toss well. Top with shrimp and extra lemon citrus if you like. Salad can be made up to 6 hours in advance and refrigerated. Serve cold or at room temperature. (Recipe inspired by Country Living Magazine.)


I love summer in a bowl, don’t you?


Shrimp & Ceasar Salad


Oh Momma! This salad is a specialty my mother serves at our family gatherings. Her favorite entrees to pair it with are marinated grilled pork or grilled herb chicken breasts. Mom’s secret is in the bottled creamy dressing she blends with a smidgen of milk. She’s tried them all and says this brand is the best! I do agree, because her version of Caesar salad is better than any I’ve ever had.


I served it up with leftover baby shrimp and added fresh basil from the kitchen, but the extra herb is not necessary. You can add any meat or fish you like of course and it’s amazing with marinated grilled kabobs. Mom says it’s divine with Greek olives, too!

Shrimp & Ceasar Salad

2 whole romaine lettuce stalks, washed, leaves removed and lightly chopped
1/2 seedless cucumber, peel on, sliced thin, cut in half
1/2 onion, sliced thin, ringlets cut in half
1 cup small red grape tomatoes, cut in half
1/2 cup cooked salad shrimp, peeled and ready-to-serve
3/4 cup Ceasar dressing (Marketside Classic Caesar Dressing available in produce dept. at Walmart).
1 tbsp milk
Bacon bits (optional)
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
6 fresh herb leaves of choice (optional)
salt & pepper to taste

In large bowl combine lettuce leaves, cucumber, onion, tomatoes and shrimp. In separate bowl mix dressing, milk and bacon bits to combine. Pour dressing over salad and toss. Sprinkle sunflower seeds over the top and add fresh herb leaves (optional). Salt and pepper to taste and serve. Also delicious with grilled chicken breast or marinated pork.

Don’t forget to enter my Better Homes & Gardens Magazine 1-year subscription giveaway. Look in the right sidebar on this page for the contest.


Asian Summer Rolls With Savory Dipping Sauce


Asian summer rolls are the perfect salad wrapped in soft rice sheets and dipped in a spicy, sweet, savory sauce. I added red bell pepper slices for color, crunch and natural sweetness.

After searching all over my grocery store for the rice sheets, I finally found them in the healthy and organic refrigerated section.  This recipe, like so many, calls for fresh herbs and lettuce and I was able to pick them straight from my container garden, which I wrote about starting several weeks ago.   I can’t tell you how often I have snipped a few leaves for sandwiches, burgers and quick salads with one step outside the back door. Two green-thumbs up for container gardens!

Asian Summer Rolls With Savory Dipping Sauce

Dipping Sauce
1-1/4 tblsp sugar
2 tsp warm water
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tsp chili sauce, such as Sriracha
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp finely shredded carrot
1 green onion, finely chopped
Dissolve sugar in warm water, combine with other ingredients, and chill until ready to use.

Summer Rolls
1 cup (approx 40) small salad shrimp, peeled and cooked (from 12 oz bag)
2 oz Vietnamese or Thai rice noodles (about 1 cup dry)
6 rice-paper rounds (about 8-1/2 inches in diameter)
1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
12 fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup shredded carrot
12 large fresh mint leaves
3 red-leaf lettuce, spines removed, making 6 halves

Line up ingredients in small bowls before beginning to make rolls. Fill a large bowl or saucepan with very warm water. Place a rice paper round in the hot water. Soak for between 30 seconds and 1 minute, or until rice round is pliable and pattern on the round is barely visible. Remove and place on a clean, slightly damp kitchen towel. (Rice sheets tend to stick to solid surfaces and plates.)

Place 2 basil leaves on the inner edge of the rice round, top with approximately 1/4 cup cooked rice noodles and several red pepper slices. Place 6-8 shrimp halves on top. Top with about 2 tablespoons carrots, then 2 leaves of mint. Fold 1 piece of lettuce leaf and place on top of pile. Bring the edge over filling and tuck underneath. As you continue to roll, fold in the sides. Finish rolling, repeat with the other rolls, and reserve under a damp cloth or paper towel. When ready to serve, slice in half and serve, cut ends up, with dipping sauce.

Ellie Krieger from the Food Network inspired me to make these delicious, healthy Asian rolls.

They are quite easy to make by the way. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did!


Roasted Salmon With Mustard-Dill Glaze



Good day friends! Wow, what a weekend!!  We were busy indeed with two more graduation parties to attend, a Father’s Day celebration in-between, and a youth event for about 30 teenagers in our backyard last night. Our calendar is full for June and July, but August looks like the month we will rest and just go with the flow. Have you been busy this month at gatherings with friends and family, also?

In the meantime, my son woke up to a persistent cough, which thankfully is due to allergies and nothing more serious. It is his last week of school and I am praying he feels up to going back tomorrow so he can take his final tests, and not only finish the year strong, but enjoy these last few days with his friends before summer break.

Here is a quick recipe for baked or grilled salmon that is super easy and tasty, too. If you choose to grill the fillets first, try adding the glaze after they have been cooked to avoid burning the fish and losing the mustard-dill sauce on the hot grates.

Roasted Salmon With Mustard-Dill Glaze

4 – 4 oz center-cut salmon fillets
grainy mustard
chopped dill
dark brown sugar
lemon juice
black pepper
garlic powder
onion powder

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a small dish, combine 3 tablespoons mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon each grainy mustard and chopped dill. 1-1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and a pinch of black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder to taste. Put four 4-ounce, center-cut salmon fillets on a foil-lined baking sheet. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper and spread mayonnaise mixture over top of fillets. Roast until just cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes.



Shrimp & Crunchy Calamari Fajitas With Tzatziki Sauce


I had a craving for shrimp fajitas and while gathering ingredients to make them I noticed a box of frozen breaded calamari rings in the freezer. Sauteed shrimp and crunchy calamari in a fajita? Sounded good to me! Plus mixing the two together was an inexpensive way to serve the family a lot of good food without breaking the bank.  Fresh shrimp can be pricey and we love to eat!



To keep calamari crunchy add the baked rings to the shrimp and vegetables last, then top with Tzatziki sauce (recipe below).


Shrimp & Crunchy Calamari Fajitas

8 – 7 inch soft tortillas
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 red bell pepper, sliced thin
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper (or to taste)
1 small bunch of cilantro, slightly chopped
1 tsp Cavender’s All Purpose Greek Seasoning
1 lb large raw shrimp – drained, peeled, deveined, tails removed
1 – 8 oz. box of breaded calamari rings
Tzatziki sauce (optional)

1. Prepare Tzatziki (recipe below). Cover and refrigerate until serving.

2. Heat oven for calamari rings per box directions. (Tip: A slightly oiled black cast-iron skillet crisps breaded foods nicely in the oven.) In large skillet on medium high heat add olive oil and saute garlic and crushed red pepper, 1 minute. Add onions and red bell peppers, cook until slightly brown, about 3 minutes. Add about 1/4 cup water, cover and cook until tender.

3. Bake calamari rings in the oven as directed.

4. Add onion powder, salt, Greek seasoning, sun dried tomatoes and raw shrimp to the pan and saute until shrimp are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Pour into serving dish and top with fresh cilantro. Scoop baked calamari rings onto a separate serving plate.

5. Warm soft tortillas, two at a time, in microwave about 18 seconds. Add cooked shrimp and pepper mixture to the center of the warmed tortilla, top with 3 to 5 calamari rings and a large dollop of Tzatziki sauce. Makes 8 fajitas.

Greek Tzatziki Cucumber Sauce
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sour cream
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1/2 cucumber cut in half, center seeds scooped out
1/4 tsp Cavender’s All-Purpose Greek Seasoning
1/4 tsp garlic powder or 1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tbsp chopped parsley (optional)
salt and pepper

Stir yogurt, sour cream and lime juice in a bowl until mixed. Add cucumber seeds, Greek seasoning, garlic, cumin, parsley and mix. Season with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature, or cover and chill.


Zesty Marinated Shrimp & Artichokes



This shrimp dish is a nice appetizer served before dinner and on special occasions. It takes just a few minutes to prepare and a day to chill. Enjoy!

Zesty Marinated Shrimp & Artichokes

1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp parsley
2 tbsp finely chopped green onion
3 tbsp olive oil
1 packet garlic-and-herb dressing mix .75 oz (Good Seasons brand or the like)
1 lb peeled and deveined large cooked shrimp 21/30 count
1 14 oz can artichoke hearts, drained  and cut in half
1 cup olives (black or Kalamata)
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
1 cup fresh mozzarella, cut into cubes or crumbled feta
Small fresh basil leaves, chopped

Whisk together vinegar and next 4 ingredients in a bowl. Stir in shrimp and next 4 ingredients. Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours. Stir in desired amount of basil just before serving.

Hope to get a DIY project posted this week, too! xo



Yum-Yum! Pan-Fried Egg Rolls



Delicious pan-fried egg rolls without the fuss and calories of deep frying. Just a few simple ingredients keep these Asian-style rolls easy to prepare. And the sweet and spicy dipping sauce will make your taste buds tingle!  Egg roll wrappers are usually found in your supermarket’s refrigerated or health food section. Chili sauce is available in the Asian foods section. If your grocery store is not selling fresh bean sprouts, substitute with canned but drain well.

Pan-Fried Egg Rolls

1/4 cup sweet chili sauce, divided
12 ounces fresh bean sprouts, chopped or 14 oz can bean sprouts, drained well
12 (8-inch) egg roll wrappers
12 cooked jumbo shrimp, peeled, deveined, and split in half lengthwise (about 13 oz)
6 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
3 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup peanut or olive oil
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp less-sodium soy sauce
1/4 tsp grated peeled fresh ginger
Squeeze of lime citrus juice, about 1 tsp

Combine 3 tbsp chili sauce and bean sprouts, tossing well to coat.

Place 1 egg roll wrapper on surface with one corner pointing to you. Spoon 2 heaping tbsp bean sprout mixture into center of wrapper; top with 2 shrimp halves and 1-1/2 tsp cilantro and 1 tsp green onions. Fold lower corner of wrapper over filling; fold in side corners. Moisten top corner of wrapper with water to seal. Place egg roll seam side down on baking sheet and repeat until all rolls are made.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 6 egg rolls, seam side down; cook 7 minutes or until golden brown, turning occasionally. Place on wire rack or plate with paper towel and repeat next 6 rolls.

Combine remaining chili sauce, vinegar, soy sauce, lime juice, ginger and green onions. Serve sauce with egg rolls.

It’s been a rainy week here in Michigan. I’ve practically hosed both sons down after track practice each evening to get the mud off their backs, legs and shoes.  But this is also the kind of weather that gives me a good excuse to stay in and try new recipes, too!


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