Scampi Primavera


It seems I got this recipe from a box of Ronzoni pasta long ago. It’s been a standard in our home for many years.  Always a little different, but always delicious.

2-3 portions

  • 1/2 box (about 1/2 pound) of pasta (Fusili as shown in photo is our favorite.)
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped lemon peel
  • 1-2 carrots, cut in 2-inch thin strips
  • 1/2 medium zucchini, cut in 2-inch thin strips
  • 1/2 medium red pepper, cut in 2-inch thin strips
  • .5 – .7 lb cleaned medium shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (also have used chicken broth)
  • 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
  • pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil (or 1- 2 teaspoons dry)
  • 2 tablespoons torn Italian parsley (optional)

Cook pasta as directed on package.  Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet, add and stir garlic and lemon peel about 30 seconds. Add vegetables. I normally add the carrot first. Then add zucchini and shrimp.  Cook, stirring in lemon juice, salt and pepper and red pepper.  Stir in basil or parsley when the shrimp is pink all over and just cooked through.

I pour my cooked pasta into the skillet so it will absorb the juices. (warning; you don’t have to put all pasta in; You don’t want to drown out the shrimp and veggies with too much pasta. Put only as much in as you feel will balance the shrimp and veggies.  If I have it I may add a bit of chicken broth to keep everything slightly juicy.  Of course I sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top as well

Published in: on March 19, 2016 at 8:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Lemon Pepper Shrimp & Green Bean Pasta


Not exactly sure where this recipe comes from. I suspect it was one that I created based on other recipes.  It’s definitely something you can mess around with to make according to your taste. You could easily swap out the green beans for broccoli or asparagus.  Key is always good shrimp. These were wild-caught from Mexico, our favorite.  This makes two portions.

  • 1/2 lb shrimp – Rinse, peel and devein. Keep shells to make broth
  • Green beans cooked al denté and cut in 2 – 3 inch lengths
  • Pasta for 2 cooked al denté
  • 2-3 Tbsp. red, yellow or orange pepper cut in small pieces
  • 2 Tbsp chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped fine or minced
  • olive oil and butter


  • 1/2 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup white wine

Whisk together marinade ingredients and pour 1/2 over peeled shrimp.  Let set about 30 minutes, turning occasionally while you cook beans and prepare other ingredients.

Put shrimp shells  in small pan.  Fill water to just cover shells.  Add sliced garlic, dash of creole seasoning, celery green, bay leaf. Let simmer.  Add salt to taste and anything else you have on hand that you think might make the broth better  — e.g. parsley, dash of wine, etc.

Cook pasta and start combining the sauce below about 5 minutes before the pasta is finished.  You want to pour hot, al denté pasta into the sauce.

  1. Saute garlic, onion in oil and butter in a pan large enough for the entire dish.
  2. Add shrimp and cook just till pink on both sides.
  3. Add peppers and cooked green beans.
  4. Add remaining marinade and cook a minute or 2.
  5. Add pasta and broth, about 1/4 cup.
  6. Stir well and keep adding small amounts of broth till pasta has soaked up broth flavor. But don’t allow it to become mushy! Your goal is flavorful but firm pasta.
  7. Add spices to taste such as dill, basil, oregano.
  8. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top when serving.


Published in: on December 14, 2015 at 12:02 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Shrimp and Feta Cheese Casserole

Shrimp Feta Cheese CasseroleEasy, fast and very tasty way to serve shrimp. I usually serve it over rice.

  • 3 TBS olive oil
  •  2 cups chopped onions
  • 1 – 2  cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley (optional; I usually don’t have this on hand and just add a bit more dill)
  • 1 TBS chopped fresh dill or 1 tsp dried dill
  • 2 cups tomatoes or 16-ounce can of Italian peeled tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • pinch of red pepper flakes or a dash of Tobasco
  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

In a skillet, sauté the onion and garlic in the olive oil until onion is soft. Add the herbs, tomatoes, and tomato paste, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the shrimp and cook for 2 minutes (or until they just lose translucence).  Add red pepper or Tabasco to taste.

Pour the mixture into a well-greased 1 1/2 quart casserole. Sprinkle top with the feta cheese. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until cheese is melted (and shrimp is cooked through.)

Serve hot, to 4 as main dish, or 8 as appetizer.

Notes: I usually use a can of tomatoes, but recently had a lot of grape tomatoes so I sliced them once and cooked as directed in recipe.  It was delicious!  Best ever.

I have also just cooked everything on the stove top and skipped the oven.  I just cooked the shrimp longer to make sure they were cooked (but never overcooked!) and added the feta cheese, stirring it into the hot mix.  It melts pretty quickly within a minute or so.  You don’t want it completely melted into the tomatoes.  Try to keep it so there are lumps here and there as in photo.  Time the addition of the cheese so you don’t overcook the shrimp trying to get the cheese to melt.

Other variations of this recipe call for grated lemon peel and oregano rather than dill. We are very partial to the dill, but variations are also very good.


Published in: on February 14, 2015 at 5:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Spicy Mango Shrimp

Once again I have to thank my neighbor, Ellen for giving me this recipe. I guess her husband Joe found it and made it and they both liked it so much she decided to share it with us. We also really like it, but unlike Ellen’s husband, my husband has not volunteered to make this.  😦

Note that broccoli is not part of the recipe, but I served it as a side dish with lemon zest and garlic. Nice complement.

  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. red chile flakes (or to taste)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 12 oz. peeled and deveined medium shrimp
  • 2 cups cubed (preferably unripe or frozen) mango
  • 1/4 cup  toasted shredded unsweetened coconut
  • (I added chopped red peppers and sliced mushrooms)

Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Sauté onion until golden brown. (It’s very important to the taste of the dish that the onions are golden brown.) Add chopped red pepper if using, garlic, red chile flakes, soy sauce, lime juice, and shrimp.  Cook, stirring often.  When shrimp starts to turn pink, add mushrooms if using and continue cooking till all shrimp has turned pink. Add basil and mango and cook until mango is warmed. Sprinkle with toasted coconut and serve with steamed jasmine rice. (about 3 servings)

Published in: on June 27, 2012 at 7:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Shrimp Scampi with Mushroom Sauce Topped Polenta

How can you go wrong with a butter, garlic, shrimp combo for a Valentine’s meal?  (Hey, isn’t HE supposed to be taking ME out tonight?  Aha! That’s how I went wrong. Well, I’ll keep this in my “You OWE  me” file.)

I had one of those precooked tubes of polenta so I sliced it into 1/2 inch disks and baked them. The sauce was a creamy, “tomatoey,” mushroom and onion concoction. Nothing impressive about its looks (which is why it’s hidden in the back of the photo.) But with the polenta, it was good. Kind of like adult baby food.

I forgot the parsley I had minced in the first photo, so here’s what the parsley-enhanced version looked like.

Published in: on February 14, 2011 at 9:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Sausage, Asparagus and Mushroom Risotto

Sausage?  What kind of sausage is pink?  OK, I admit, I messed with the recipe again…

We’re not huge risotto fans so I worried that a “plate of mushy rice” would not pass as dinner. I considered grilling some shrimp from the freezer with the risotto as the side dish. But in the end, I decided to go with the recipe as is, but I couldn’t get the idea of shrimp out of my head. So I took just a few shrimp and sauteed them in the remaining sausage/garlic/onion/mushroom oil. I chopped them into bite-size bits and put them on the top so they could easily be tossed to the side if this was a really bad idea. BUT, the shrimp was quite good. You had enough to bite into with the shrimp bits so that the risotto didn’t seem mushy to us. But then again, the whole risotto was quite tasty. I think this risotto could be made with shrimp instead of the sausage as long as the shrimp was well-seasoned.

Another winning recipe from the authors of Desperation Dinners. Sadly I don’t think they run this in our UT newspaper anymore which is a shame because these ladies offered some good recipes that you could make in under a half hour.

Funny, the online recipe link says the newspaper article got it wrong.  It said vegetable broth. (so I used chicken broth)  Online it says to use vegetable juice! Now I’ll have to make it again some time to see what it tastes like with the V8 juice. I can’t imagine! My changes were that I added 2 cloves of garlic to the onions and I used chicken broth and chicken basil sausage rather than Italian sausage.

Recipe Article Link

And because I’ve had other recipes disappear when the link disappeared, I decided to copy and paste it right here.

Sausage, Asparagus and Mushroom Risotto

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2/3 cup Arborio rice
1 can (14 ounces) low-sodium tomato-vegetable juice, such as V-8*  ( I used chicken broth)
1 link (about 1/4 pound) Italian turkey sausage, or sausage of choice, casing removed and crumbled  (I used chicken basil sausage)
1/2 cup sliced button mushrooms
1/2 cup finely chopped onion  ( also added 2 cloves of minced garlic)
1/2 cup finely chopped pencil-thin asparagus*
1/2 cup white wine or apple juice
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, or more to taste
Salt and pepper to taste

Place butter and oil in a 1 1/2-quart microwave-safe bowl. Microwave, uncovered on high, until butter melts, about 1 minute. Stir in rice and microwave, uncovered on high, until rice begins to turn translucent, about 2 minutes.

Stir in tomato juice, cover with microwave-safe plastic wrap (or use a lid), and microwave on high until mixture reaches a full boil, 7 to 9 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook sausage, onion and mushrooms in a medium nonstick skillet until sausage is cooked through. Remove rice mixture from microwave, uncover, and stir well. Continue to microwave on high, uncovered, for 5 more minutes, or until rice is almost done. (Rice should be moist, al dente in texture, but not soupy).

Stir in sausage mixture, asparagus and wine. Continue to microwave, uncovered, until rice is done and asparagus is crisp-tender, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in cheese and serve immediately. Serve additional cheese for topping at the table, if desired.

Cooking Notes

Our Desperation Dinners newspaper column mistakenly referred to the V-8 as vegetable “broth.” What you need here is V-8 juice. Sorry for the mix-up!

They also have a Ham and Asparagus recipe  which I haven’t tried, but in case I want to, here’s the link: Ham and Asparagus Risotto

And to add to the repertoire, I also made a risotto with asparagus, bacon, and bella mushrooms. Basically the same technique — mmm– wait… I didn’t use the microwave.  I do it on the stove. Cooked the bacon and asparagus first and sauteed the mushrooms.  Set everything aside.  Started the risotto with onion, garlic and then the rice in the saucepan with bacon fat and olive oil. I added the asparagus, bacon, mushroom back in at the end when the rice was just about finished at a slightly al dente texture. Sprinkled in some rosemary, but could also use oregano or marjoram.

Published in: on October 30, 2010 at 10:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Shrimp pasta

A perennial favorite! 

And not just because it is not leftovers, like the last three nights {duck & cover!}

No really, this one is a favorite!

Published in: on January 13, 2010 at 9:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Gingered shrimp w/ chickpeas and spinach


Ev found the recipe in her book, had the ingredients, so we had this for the first time ever!  Newspapers may be dying but one benefit of getting them is the random recipes they publish, which you may eventually get to try out if you have a serendipitous kitchen!

This has a subtle Indian flavor. Here’s the interesting and very different recipe:

  • 1 (1 1/4 inch ) piece ginger root, peeled and minced (I used about 1 tsp ground ginger cuz I didn’t have fresh)
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small chopped onion (about 3/4 cup)
  • 6 o 8 large sprigs cilantro
  • 10 oz spinach leaves
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 lemon, cut in 5 wedges
  • 1 pound large peeled and deveined shrimp
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 3 Tbl. olive oil
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • pinch cayenne pepper

If needed, toss shrimp with 1/2 tsp salt. Heat 2 Tbl. oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Add shrimp and cook for 2 minutes. Turn and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until not quite cooked through.  Transfer to a plate and squeeze a lemon wedge over the shrimp.

Add remaining 1 Tbl. oil to skillet and heat to medium.  Add onion.  Sprinkle with salt to taste and cook about 5 minutes until onion starts to brown.  Add garlic; cook for 1 minute. Add cumin, ginger and cayenne.  Stir and cook for 20 seconds, then add 1- 3/4 cups of water, chickpeas and 1/2 tsp. salt.  Increase heat to medium-high and cook uncovered, stirring for 5 minutes.  Use a potato masher to crush half of the chickpeas in the skillet, then add spinach and cilantro.  Use tongs to fold them into the mixture; cook for about 2 minutes, until wilted.

Return shrimp to skillet and cook 1 to 2 minutes, adding 1/4 cup water if needed until shrimp is reheated, opaque, and just cooked through. Remove from the heat and adjust seasonings. Serve with jasmine rice.

This recipe seems to have come from the Washington Post.

Published in: on December 13, 2009 at 4:42 am  Leave a Comment  
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