Shrimp and Sausage Jambalaya

Close-ups of jambalaya are maybe not quite as appetizing as its taste. Delicious, I swear!

Close-ups of jambalaya are maybe not quite as appetizing as its taste. Delicious, I swear!


From the same cookbook as the last post, Jambalaya: The Official Cookbook of the Junior League of New Orleans (1981). Spicy, delicious, and easier than you might have imagined, this is the real thing! There are ten jambalaya recipes in this cookbook. Here is the one we made tonight:

1 lb smoked sausage, thinly sliced
3 tbsp olive oil
2/3 c chopped green bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 c chopped fresh parsley
1 c chopped celery
2 16-oz cans tomatoes
2 c chicken broth
1 c chopped green onion
1 1/2 tsp thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tsp oregano
1 tbsp Creole seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 c long grain converted rice, washed
3 lbs raw shrimp, peeled

Preheat you oven to 350 degrees. In a 4 quart heavy pot, sauté sausage; remove with a slotted spoon. Add oil to the drippings and sauté green peppers, garlic, parsley, and celery for five minutes. Chop tomatoes and reserve liquid. Add tomatoes with liquid, broth, and green onions. Stir in spices. Add rice which has been washed and rinsed three times. Add sausage and cook for 30 minutes, covered, over low heat, stirring occasionally. After most liquid has been absorbed by rice, add shrimp and cook until pink. Transfer mixture to a casserole dish and bake for approximately 25 minutes. Serves 10.

Notes: I halved this recipe and it came out just fine. I do feel that this dish needs vegetables. I think a cup of okra would be perfect. Okra tends to thicken things a little bit, so I’m guessing a little extra chicken broth might be needed. Also, serve this with a dollop of sour cream. It cuts the spiciness and heavy texture nicely.


Shrimp Fettucine



From a fantastic vintage cookbook I grew up with, Jambalaya: The Official Cookbook of the Junior League of New Orleans (1981). When you can find it used, it is well worth the couple of dollars. It occasionally pops up on that Amazon page or eBay. The recipes are all classics, plus many Creole and Cajun dishes you’ve never heard of.  Even without pictures, they’ll make you drool just reading the dish names.

This was an easy 20 minute dinner and a fairly plain and simple one for the cookbook, but last night I happened to have everything on the list at home, even the shrimp. I omitted the mushrooms because I’m the only one in my house that loves them. If I had added them I think shiitakes would have been ideal, as their flavor and shape holds up well in cooking and they produce very little liquid. Lastly, I think a sprinkle of dry white wine or vermouth would make this more dynamic. I served it with a wedge of lemon and tossed some deep fried shallots on there – blammo. Perfection.

You’ll have to unbutton your jeans when you’re done eating.

5 green onions, chopped
2 c sliced mushrooms (I omitted this)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 stick of butter (American sticks are 8 tbsp – 1/2 c)
2 tbsp oil (I omitted this)
1 lb peeled, deveined, raw shrimp (I only had 1/2 lb)
2 tsp salt
8 oz fettucine (I used closer to 10 oz)
3/4 c grated Romano cheese
3/4 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 c heavy cream
1/4 c chopped fresh parsley

In a large skillet, saute green onions, mushrooms, and garlic in 1/2 a stick of butter and oil. Add shrimp and saute until pink. Pour off excess liquid. Season with salt (I also added pepper). Cover and keep warm.

Cook noodles in salted, boiling water. Drain. In a saucepan, melt remaining 1/2 stick of butter. Add noodles, cheeses, and cream. Mix well and combine with shrimp mixture. Sprinkle with parsley and toss. Serve immediately.

*Note: They aren’t kidding about serving immediately. It pales in texture every moment that goes by.

Spaghetti with Anchovies, Dried Chili, and Pangritata

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From Jamie Oliver’s The Naked Chef Takes Off. Says it serves four (but for real? No way it’s only for four, that’s massive portions).

For the pangritata (breadcrumbs flavored up and fried, also sometimes called “poor man’s parmesan”):

1/2 c olive oil
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 good handful of fresh thyme, leaves picked
7 oz fresh breadcrumbs (larger sized, not fine)
salt and freshly ground pepper

1 lbs spaghetti
6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
16 anchovy fillets (I used about 3/4 of this)
juice of two lemons
2 small dried red chillies, crumbled

First, make the pangritata. Put the olive oil in a hot, thick-bottomed pan. Add garlic, thyme, and breadcrumbs; they will fry and begin to toast. Stir for a couple of minutes until the breadcrumbs are really crisp and golden. Season with a little salt and freshly ground pepper and drain on paper towels.

Cook the spaghetti in salted boiling water until al dente. While it is cooking, put the oil and garlic in a pan and heat gently. As the garlic begins to soften, lay the anchovy fillets over the top. After a minute you will see them begin to melt. Squeeze in the lemon juice and sprinkle in the dried chillies. Toss in the drained spaghetti and coat it in the sauce. Taste a bit of pasta – it may need a little more lemon juice and a little extra seasoning. Serve straight away, sprinkled really generously with the pangritata.


I halved this recipe in every way except I still went with two chillies and two cloves of garlic. I thought that came out perfectly. Also, I had cherry tomatoes laying around, so I halved and fried them along with the anchovies, and that was a great addition. Knowing how it tastes now, next time I will add capers as well.

The pangritata was really good. I was out of fresh thyme, but had a little fresh sage and rosemary in the fridge, so I chopped that up and used it instead – delicious. Pangritata is basically garlic bread croutons in your pasta. I made the breadcrumbs from some Como bread (which is a bit sour), and I think that gave them a great, stronger flavor.

Final Thoughts:

It looks boring, doesn’t it? If you don’t mind a little anchoviness, it’s so, so good. We both really liked it. It must be eaten hot to avoid an overly fishy flavor. Doubling the chili for the proportion was perfect for us, but a little bit more heat for Nevan than he cared for, so he opted to go with a salad instead. Perfect quick meal and I will make it again. Also, I’ll be making pangritata again for other things (and asking Dave “you like my tatas?”).

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Blackened Tilapia

We like things spicy in this household so anything blackened is always a hit.  The seasoning comes from Alton Brown’s recipe for blackened salmon.  Most of it is the  same but I changed it a tiny bit and cut back on most of the salt.  The Italian seasoning has a strong presence so if you like a traditional blackened flavor you may reduce the amount.  If you don’t like the heat, this sweeter version is great too.

I served mine with rice and roasted red and yellow peppers, broccoli, zucchini, and sweet potatoes.  Nothing fancy to that recipe, just a combo of salt, pepper, parsley, greek seasoning, minced garlic, and olive oil.  Roast for 40 minutes at 425 degrees.


2-4 tilapia filets

1 tbsp Italian Seasoning

1 tsp pepper

2 tbsp paprika

1 tsp salt

1/2 tbsp cayenne pepper (up to 1 tbsp if you like some heat)

1/2  tsp garlic powder

2 tbsp olive oil


Combine spices and sprinkle liberally over fish.  Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add fish to pan and cook 3-4 minutes per side until done.


Tex-Mex Shrimp

I rarely cook with shrimp.  Like, literally hardly ever.  I don’t know what came over me, but I blame it on Kate posting this last week.  Anyway, I made a little different version tonight and I must say, they are delish and versatile, just like Kate’s.

Tex-Mex Shrimp

Borrowed from here….

Cooking spray

1 1/2 cups chopped white onion

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 1/2 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce  of your choice

1/4 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 cup finely chopped green onions

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add cumin, chili powder, shrimp, and garlic; sauté 4 minutes. Remove from heat, and add butter, salt, and hot sauce. Stir until the butter melts. Stir in juice and green onions.


I can imagine these little guys would be delicious over rice, or on top of a taco salad, or just about any way you serve them.  I made them in to tacos for D.Jones by putting a dollop of homemade guac on a slightly warmed corn tortilla (doubled up, actually so they don’t tear and fall apart), and then layered some shrimp on top of the guac, topped that with a sprinkle of crumbled cotija cheese, some fresh cilantro and sliced green onions.

For myself, I crisped the corn tortilla in the oven and made it tostada-style, all nice and crunchy, then a layer of guac and the same toppings as above.  D.Jones and I taste-tested and it’s impossible to say which was better..they were both really good.

Taco Style

Or tostada style

Spicy Shrimp with Garlic and Parsley

I once dreamt of a cookbook full of color photos for every single recipe, maybe even step by step photos.  And then Pinterest came along and all my dreams came true.  Really though, it is the greatest thing to happen to the internet, in my opinion.  My menu and palate have forever changed.

This shrimp recipe is one of my favorites because it can be served so many different ways.  If I’m feeling generous, I give it to my family as an appetizer to nibble on while I cook the main course.  Tonight, I served it with rice and broccoli.  Simple and delicious.  My favorite way to serve it is Mexican style, either in a tortilla with some salsa verde and avocado or placed on top of a tostito cup filled with guacamole. Yum!  If you are a pasta fan, it would be great with a lemony, buttery pasta as well.

The little bit of red pepper it calls for does add some heat so if you are making it for the kids you might want to half it.  Chloe likes the heat so I follow the recipe.

Spicy Shrimp with Garlic and Parsley courtesy of Cooking Melangery

Serves: 4


  • 4 to 5 Tbs. olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 to 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 Tbs. dry white wine
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley

In a sauté pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes and paprika and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant.

Increase the heat to high, add the shrimp, lemon juice and dry white wine, stir well, and sauté until the shrimp turn pink and are opaque throughout, about 3-5 minutes.

Season with salt and black pepper, sprinkle with the parsley and serve.