Meal Planning Monday ~ Celebrating Mardi Gras

This week’s blog post is by Christy Hoover of A Woman the World Deserves.

I am a true Louisiana girl through and through. My family and I grew up on etoufee, gumbo, and red beans and rice as weeknight dinners – not special occasions. Being married to the military, we don’t always have access to authentic New Orleans style food in our travels. So for Mardi Gras week, although we may not be in New Orleans, we at least get to dine as if we are! I hope you guys enjoy the seafood of this week!

Monday ~ Mardi Gras Shrimp and Grits

 Ingredients:

  • 1 pound 16/20 shrimp peeled and deveined
  • ¼ cup of red bell pepper
  • ¼ cup of yellow bell pepper
  • ¼ cup of purple onion
  • 1 Tbsp. of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 cup of whipping cream
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2 Tbsp. of butter
  • 1 Tbsp. of flour

Directions:

  • Heat medium size skillet on medium high heat. Put butter in pan. Once butter is melted, add the flour and stir until it is blended.
  • Add pepper and onions and cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the whipping cream and stir until the mixture is creamy. Add the whole milk and stir to loosen up the creamy mixture. Once that is blended, pour in the lemon juice and stir.
  • Add the shrimp and garlic and your favorite Cajun seasoning to taste. Cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and done.

Grits: Cook grits as directed on package. What I do differently is half the water with milk. And I add a ½ cup of shredded cheese. It comes out so creamy this way.

 

Tuesday ~ Chicken Sauce Picante

  Ingredients:

  • 4 legs and 4 thighs
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup of onion
  • ½ cup of bell pepper
  • 1 cup of carrots (chopped, sliced, or julienned)
  • 1 cup of quartered mushrooms
  • 8 oz. Cajun smoked sausage
  • 2 cans of tomato sauce
  • 1 can of stewed tomatoes

Directions:

  • Heat stockpot to medium high and add olive oil. Season chicken legs and thighs to taste with your favorite Cajun seasoning.  Add chicken to pot and brown.
  • Once chicken is browned, add the smoked sausage, onion, and bell peppers.
  • Stir until everything is incorporated and add the cans of tomatoes, carrot and mushrooms and simmer for 35 minutes or cook until chicken is tender.

Wednesday ~ Creamy Shrimp and Oyster Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 pound of 16/20 shrimp
  • 10 medium oysters, chopped
  • ½ cup of onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 8 oz., cream cheese
  • 1 jar of Alfredo sauce

Directions:

  • Cook pasta according to directions on package.
  • Put olive oil into pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is translucent.
  • Add cream cheese until creamy. Once well incorporated, add the jar of Alfredo to the pot and allow sauce to simmer.
  • In a separate pot, add a tbsp. of olive oil on medium high heat. Add shrimp and oysters and cook until shrimp is pink. Season to taste.
  • Add to the cheese mixture and stir.
  • Mix with cooked pasta.

Thursday ~ Breakfast for Dinner – Eggs Benedict with a Shrimp Hollandaise Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 4 English muffins cut in half
  • 8 poached eggs
  • 8 slices of Canadian bacon
  • Hollandaise Sauce

Directions:

  • Toast English muffins and set aside. Place Canadian bacon on a hot skillet and cook on both sides for 1-2 minutes per side. Set aside.
  • Hollandaise Sauce: Place 2 egg yolks, ¼ teaspoon of Dijon mustard, 1 Tbsp. of lemon juice in blender and blend on high.  Slowly pour in 2 Tbsp. of melted butter.  Add ¼ tsp. of seasoned salt.
  • Cook ½ pound of 16-20 shrimp in 1 tsp. of olive oil until pink.
  • Assemble Eggs benedict. Place English muffin on plate. Add Canadian bacon, and then place the poached egg. On top of the egg sprinkle the shrimp. Pour 1 tablespoon of hollandaise sauce over the mountain of goodness.

Friday ~ Fried Fish with Shrimp Sauce

Fish Fry:

Ingredients:

  • 4 pieces of catfish or tilapia
  • Canola oil
  • Seasoning Salt

Directions:

  • Heat a heavy pan over medium high heat.  Season fish on meat side with salt and pepper. Lightly dredge fish in fish fry and shake off excess.
  • When pan is good and hot, add Canola oil. As soon as foaming subsides, place fish in pan with the skin side down. Jiggle pan for the first 10 seconds to keep the fish from sticking. Cook until golden crust forms on meat.
  • Carefully turn fish away from you and again jiggle pan for the first few seconds. Cook until skin turns golden brown. Remove to a warm plate.

Shrimp Sauce:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound 16/20 shrimp peeled, deveined, and chopped
  • ¼ cup of onion
  • 1 Tbsp. of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 cup of whipping cream
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2 Tbsp. of butter
  • 1 Tbsp. of flour

Directions:

  • Heat medium size skillet on medium high heat.  Put butter in pan.  Once butter is melted add the flour and stir until it is blended.
  • Add onions and garlic cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the whipping cream and stir until the mixture is creamy.  Add the Whole milk and stir to loosen up the creamy mixture. Once that is blended, pour in the lemon juice and stir.
  • Add the shrimp and garlic and your favorite Cajun seasoning to taste.  Cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the shrimp is pink and done. Pour shrimp sauce on fried fish and serve.

 

Christy Hoover is a military wife and mother of two who loves sharing her love of cooking and relationship advice with anyone who will listen. You can gather the best tips on life, building strong relationships, and making meatloaf on her website,

 A Woman the World Deserves.