Main Course Recipes

Super Simple Shrimp Coconut Curry

While delightfully magical, planning a wedding is extremely time consuming.  I was still cooking up a storm amidst all the past magic, but I didn’t have time to photograph and post my recipes. Yes, I’m using the – “I recently got married excuse” – to justify my year long absence. So, what does this mean for you? It means you’re going to have to suffer through a few wedding pictures. It means I have plenty of tasty dishes tested and ready to publish. It means I’ll never go on a year long hiatus again.

Ryan and I got married at Journeyman Distillery in Southwest Michigan. Our families and talented friends pulled off what was without a doubt the best day of our lives. Truly magical. Pictures below!

Now onto the recipe – this curry is made up of big bold flavors. Onion, ginger and garlic give the dish a sturdy foundation.  Turmeric, coriander, curry powder, and coconut milk give the dish a wonderful depth.  Well balanced and mildly spicy. If you prefer spicier,  just add more cayenne to the shrimp marinade.

I know curry is one of those dishes often outsourced to carryout due to the “curry takes a log time to make properly” myth. Don’t believe that.  No myths or magic involved in this. It’s just simply delicious.

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Ingredients:
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 lbs extra-large shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (or your preferred oil)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp mild curry powder
  • 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 5.5 oz can unsweetened coconut milk
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish
  • cooked basmati rice, for serving (or your preferred grain)
Instructions:
  1. In a small bowl, toss the shrimp with the first 4 ingredients – 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper, 3 tbsp lemon juice – and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
  2. While the shrimp are marinating, heat the oil in a medium size pot. Add the onion, and cook for 3-5 minutes. Stir in the ginger, garlic, pepper, salt, coriander, turmeric, and curry powder.
  3. Continue to cook over medium heat until the onion is translucent, ( about another 2 minutes). Add the diced tomato. Stir well and cook for 2 minutes. Add the coconut milk, stir, and bring to a boil. Cook for 10 minutes. Add shrimp with the accumulated juices from the marinade and cook for another 5 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and cooked through.
  4. Serve over rice and garnish with fresh cilantro.
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Main Course Recipes, Vegetarian Recipes

Creamy Polenta with Mushrooms

Creamy Polenta with Mushroom Ragu

 

This dish is so simple.  This dish is so flavorful.  Creamy polenta, earthy mushrooms, nutty cheese, and fresh herbs.  Simplicity at its best. Also vegetarian! (an added bonus).  For you mushroom lovers, this is perfect.

Polenta is made from coarsely ground cornmeal.  It’s a staple in Italian kitchens (and mine).  You need to dedicate about 30 minutes to babysit this lovely dish, but the end result is well worth it.  Blast some tunes, sip on a glass of vino, and enjoy watching this polenta turn into a silky masterpiece.  As the polenta cooks, saute up your mushrooms.  Make sure to serve this dish hot and savor every bite.

Ingredients for Creamy Polenta:

  • 2 cups milk (I used skim)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup polenta (I like Bob’s Red Mill Organic Corn Grits)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 1/4 cup pecorino romano cheese, finely grated
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Additional cheese to finish

Ingredients for Mushrooms:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1.5 lbs baby portobello mushrooms, cleaned and sliced into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/8 cup vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

First, make the polenta.  In medium pot combine milk, water, and salt.  Bring to a light boil, slowly pour in the polenta, and whisk to combine.  (This is important, if polenta is added too quickly, lumps will form.)  Reduce heat to low and partially cover the pan.  Check on the polenta every 5 minutes and stir vigorously making sure to scrape down the sides, corners, and bottom of the pan.  Cook until liquid is absorbed and polenta is creamy, about 30 minutes total.  Remove from heat and stir in the butter, pecorino romano cheese, and black pepper.

Note: If the polenta is finished before you are ready to serve it, keep the pot partially covered over very low heat for up to 30 minutes.  Continue to stir frequently and add additional milk if it gets too thick.

Meanwhile, make the mushrooms.  Add olive oil and butter to a large saute pan over medium heat.  Once heated, add shallot and garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Add mushrooms, thyme, and parsley.  Cook for 8-10 minutes stirring occasionally until mushrooms are cooked through and golden.  Be careful not to burn the garlic in the process.  Add broth and scrape down the pan to release any brown bits.  Cook for 2 additional minutes to allow broth to cook off.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Divide polenta into 4 bowls, top with mushrooms, and additional cheese if desired.

Polenta is best when served hot, so make sure to serve immediately.

Servings: 4