Cajun Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo

Cajun Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo
Up next for my NOLA Mardi Gras theme is a quick and easy cajun/creole spiced shrimp fettuccine alfredo. I really cannot express just how quick and easy this dish is, you pretty much just season the shrimp with a cajun seasoning, cook it in a pan, make the alfredo sauce with cream and parmesan and you are done in less time than it takes to cook the pasta. Despite how easy this dish is, it is also super tasty, I mean you really cannot go wrong with alfredo pasta but then you add some cajun seasoned shrimp and thing only get better! This cajun spiced shrimp fettuccine alfredo is a great weeknight meal for the family but it is also sure to impress guests!

Pineapple Char Siu Pulled Pork Sliders

Pineapple Char Siu Pulled Pork Sliders
Pulled pork is definitely up there as one of my favourite foods and the other day when I was enjoying some char siu, a Chinese BBQ or roast pork, I thought that the char siu flavours would be amazing on pulled pork! Char siu sauce is primarily hoisin sauce and Chinese five spice with some staples like soy sauce, honey, garlic and ginger thrown in. I wanted it to be a bit more like a BBQ sauce which needs some heat so sriracha was required! When I was thinking about what I was going to use the pulled pork in, sliders were the first thing that came to mind and pulled pork sliders just scream for some slaw. With the Asian flavours going on, my mind wandered to pineapple and I figured that the juicy, sweet and tangy pineapple would pair perfectly with the rich and spicy BBQ pork. Of course adding some pineapple juice to the char siu BBQ sauce would also help tenderize the meat! Next up was what kind of buns to use for the sliders and King's Hawaiian sweet rolls were a perfect fit as their sweetness would complement the char siu BBQ pork and the tangy pineapple nicely! I have to say the the char siu pulled pork works really well and these pineapple char siu pulled pork sliders were definitely a hit!

Throwing an Oscar's party this weekend? These would be perfect for it!

Jambalaya

Jambalaya
First up for new recipes for my Mardi Gras feast is jambalaya which is a classic Louisiana rice dish. There a probably about as many different recipes for jambalaya as there are people that make it but it's base is meat, vegetables and rice and the rice is cooked in the same pot as everything else. One of the nice things about jambalaya is that you can pretty much do whatever you want with it; use whatever meat you want, use whatever vegetables you want, etc. You start by cooking the non-seafood meat, add the holy trinity (onions, celery, pepper), followed by the broth, rice and seasonings and then you let it simmer until the rice has cooked and the sauce thickens before adding the seafood at the end. Jambalaya is definitely one tasty home cooking dish that is pure comfort food!

Recipes for Mardi Gras

Recipes for Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras is just around the corner and although I will not be attending it's the perfect excuse to pull out some of my favourite New Orleans recipes! I am definitely into all of the flavours of New Orleans cuisine, especially all of the seafood! Some of my favourites include po'boy sandwiches, gumbo, etouffee, fried green tomatoes, beans and rice and many more which I have gathered in this collection of recipes for Mardi Gras. Even if you will not be in New Orleans for the Mardi Gras celebrations you can still get a taste of it at home and you can't go wrong with any of these recipes!

Baba Ghanoush Burrito Bowl

Baba Ghanoush Burrito Bowl
After enjoying plenty of baba ghanoush over the past few days I could not help but wonder about turning it into a meal, burrito bowl style. Burrito bowls are basically just deconstructed burritos served in a bowl; they usually start with a base of rice, followed by beans, meat, fresh ingredients, cheese, etc. I figured that baba ghanoush would make an excellent base for a 'burrito bowl' and I wanted to keep things with a Mediterranean theme and topped it with a seasoned ground lamb, fresh tomatoes, Greek yogurt and a hit of feta along with plenty of fresh herbs. I have to say that this baba ghanoush burrito bowl exceeded my expectations making for a really tasty meal that is both satisfying and pretty light and healthy at the same time!

Cheesecake Factory Avocado Egg Rolls

Cheesecake Factory Avocado Egg Rolls
I have never actually had these avocado egg rolls at the Cheesecake Factory but as soon as I came across them on pinterest via Lil'Luna I knew that I would have to try making them. I mean you really can't go wrong taking creamy avocado, wrapping it up in crispy egg rolls and serving them with a tasty tamarind and cashew dipping sauce. This copycat recipe is essentially a simple avocado 'guacamole' with sundried tomatoes that is wrapped up in egg rolls and fried until crispy. I would wolf down a plate of the avocado egg rolls just by themselves but they also come with a tasty sweet and tart cashew sauce for dipping that is fabulous in it's own right! I can't wait to make these avocado eggs rolls again!

Baba Ghanoush

Baba Ghanoush
A while ago I was on a hummus kick and it reminded me of another great dip that is very similar, baba ghanoush. Baba ghanoush is a levantine dish made with grilled eggplant, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and salt which are basically the same ingredients in hummus replacing the chickpeas with roasted eggplant and that makes it a great, lighter alternative to hummus. Another great thing about baba ghanoush is how easy it is to make, you simply need to roast the eggplant and then puree it with the remaining ingredients and you are ready to dig in with pitas or crackers, etc. Baba ghanoush is commonly garnished with olive oil, parsley or cilantro and optionally chili powder. In addition to making a great dip baba ghanoush also makes a nice side dish or even a light meal and I enjoy having it for breakfasts along with whole wheat pitas.

Oysters Rockefeller

Oysters Rockefeller
Oysters are something that I always enjoy, though I rarely make them at home since they take a bit of effort but for a special occasion like Valentine's Day they are definitely worth it! You really cannot go wrong with raw oysters but I like them even more when they are baked with butter and garlic and if you throw in some spinach and bacon things get even better! Oysters Rockefeller is an oyster dish where the oysters are topped with a mixture of spinach, butter and garlic along with a crispy bread crumb topping and it is surprisingly easy to make at home. Oysters can be a little challenging to shuck but once you get them open everything else is easy, you pretty much just need to melt the butter, wilt the spinach, place it in the oysters, top with bread crumbs and bake! Of course I like to add a little bacon to the mix, and who doesn't? These Oysters Rockefeller are a great way to start off your Valentine's Day dinner and who knows where it will go from there!

Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp Scampi
If you are looking for a special dinner for two you really cannot go wrong with shrimp scampi and I figured that it was the perfect time to update my old recipe! Shrimp scampi is a really simple pasta dish consisting of shrimp sauteed in a buttery, garlic, white wine and lemon sauce that is just to die for! Although this recipe is super quick and easy it is perfect for entertaining or for special dinners for two in addition to being a great weeknight meal. Really it takes more time to cook the pasta than it does to make the shrimp and sauce so dinner is on the table in less than 20 minutes! I like to hit the scampi up with some red pepper flakes for a touch of heat along with some lemon zest and parsley for garnish. No matter how you cut it, this dish is sure to impress and they will never know how easy it was to make!

Beef Wellington Tarts with Mushroom Blue Cheese Sauce

Beef Wellington Tarts with Mushroom Blue Cheese Sauce
This week I have been testing out some special new recipes for two for Valentine's Day and up first are these tasty beef wellington tarts. Beef wellington is a dish were a beef tenderloin is wrapped in puff pastry along with foie gras and mushrooms and it is baked until golden brown. Although beef wellington is great for large gatherings I wanted a version that was good for two and deconstructed beef wellington puff pastry tarts are a great way to go. The basic idea behind these tarts is to make small puff pastry shells, cook the filet mignon, slice it, place it in the shells and top it with sauteed mushrooms. A topping of melted foie gras mousse would fit with the beef wellington theme here but I really like the blue cheese and steak and mushroom combo so I decided to go with a mushroom blue cheese sauce instead. Since I always enjoy adding greens to my meals so I added a base of sauteed kale to the tart. This truly is one decadently delicious treat for a special Valentine's Day dinner that they won't forget!

Spinach and Artichoke Dip Tortellini Soup

Spinach and Artichoke Dip Tortellini Soup
I am a huge fan of spinach and artichoke dip! I mean what's not to love? Hot melted cheese, spinach and artichokes! So when I came across the idea of an artichoke dip soup on Oh Sweet Basil I knew that I would have to try making a spinach and artichoke dip soup! I started the soup off with the basics from the spinach and artichoke dip including chopped artichokes, spinach, cream cheese and parmesan (I omitted the mayo) and then I turned it into a soup by adding broth and milk (or cream). At this point I knew that the soup would taste great but I wanted something a little heartier; at first I was going to add chicken and/or white beans like I did in the jalapeno popper soup but then I thought that cheese tortellini would be a great idea. I have to say that this spinach and artichoke dip tortellini soup turned out even better than I imagined! If you are a fan of spinach and artichoke dip you simply must try this soup!

50 Valentine's Day Recipes

Valentines Day Recipes

Valentine's Day is right around the corner and that means that it is time to start thinking about what recipes you want to make for that special person in your life. Homemade food is a great way to show that you care so I thought that I would take the opportunity to roundup some of my Valentine's Day recipes. This list includes tasty recipes for everything from breakfast in bed, to appetizers, dinners for two and of course plenty of decadent chocolate treats! Most of these Valentine's Day recipes are super quick and easy to make for all levels of cooking skills. No matter what you make, a homemade Valentin's Day recipe is bound to bring a smile to that special person in your life!

Cauliflower Pepperoni Pizza Casserole

Cauliflower Pepperoni Pizza Casserole
With the cold weather here I have been craving comfort food and one of my favourite comfort food dishes is the pepperoni pizza casserole. Although I will never cease to enjoy digging into a plate of this casserole it is a little high on the calories and the carbs so I thought that I would make a new, lighter, version using cauliflower as the base rather than pasta. This casserole is super easy to make, you simply cook the cauliflower, and I like to roast it since it add that caramelized flavour, mix it with some pizza sauce and your favourite pizza toppings, top it with cheese and more of your favourite toppings and bake it until it is golden brown and bubbling. With all of the different toppings to choose from this cauliflower pizza casserole will never get boring and you can't go wrong with the classic pepperoni topping!

Chicken Enchilada Dip

Chicken Enchilada Dip
It looks like I have the time to share one final recipe idea for watching the big game today, a cheesy chicken enchilada dip! This dip is super easy to make and it starts out with chicken and a tasty homemade enchilada sauce, though you could use store bought to save some time. You can fill this dip out with your favourite enchilada fillings and I like to go with some healthier ingredients including corn and beans before moving on to plenty of cheese! You simply mix all of the ingredient, bake until the cheese has melted and then it's time to dig in with tortilla chips, crackers bread or your favourite scooping items.

Decadent Dips

Decadent Dips

I can't believe that the Big Game is tomorrow already and that means that I have been thinking about munchies for the party. Of course decadent dips are at the top of the list! I mean you really can't go wrong with a hot melted cheese dip to satisfy your guests! All of these dips are super easy to pull together and sure to leave you the talk of the town for your party!