Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Recipe: Seafood Linguine with Tomato-Caper Sauce

My husband recently prepared this recipe for the first time, and hasn't stopped raving about how fast and easy it is. If you've taken "Luscious," you may already know how poaching fish is a terrific way to get dinner on the table in a hurry. If so, here's another recipe for your collection. If not, this is the easiest recipe for poached fish I have, so even if you're not much of a cook, this recipe is for you. Enjoy!

Seafood Linguine with Tomato-Caper Sauce

1 pound linguine
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
2 teaspoons capers
½ teaspoon - 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
½ cup sherry or white wine
1 (14-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 pound seafood (I use swai or shrimp)

Cook linguine according to manufacturer’s directions. Drain and keep warm.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil in large skillet. Cook garlic over medium heat for 2 - 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Add capers, red pepper flakes, sherry and tomato sauce and stir to combine well. Add seafood and heat until just cooked through. Add linguine to skillet and gently stir to combine (break apart seafood, if necessary).

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Recipe: Thai Coconut Shrimp

I'm posting this recipe for a student in "Luscious" who suggested adding coconut milk to Thai Shrimp. This recipe is quite different from Thai Shrimp, but it offers all the flavor intrigue, perfectly balancing sweet, spicy, savory and sour tastes.

If your local grocery store doesn't stock them, it's worth the effort to journey to your nearest Asian market to find fish sauce and curry paste. If you can’t find fish sauce, substitute 2 tablespoons soy sauce and ½ - 1 teaspoon anchovy paste. Use 2 teaspoons of hot sauce (preferably Asian) in lieu of the curry paste. 

Thai Coconut Shrimp


8 ounces spaghetti
1 cup water
1 (14-ounce) can light coconut milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon bottled minced ginger
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
2 teaspoons green or red Thai curry paste
2 teaspoons lime juice  
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil (or 3/4 teaspoon dried basil flakes)
1 pound small cooked, shelled and deveined shrimp, thawed


Prepare spaghetti, following manufacturer’s directions. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, using a whisk, thoroughly combine water, coconut milk, cornstarch, fish sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic, curry paste and lime juice in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, until sauce is thick.

Add shrimp and cooked spaghetti, and cook until shrimp is heated through.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Recipe: Palak

Palak is my favorite Indian dish, so I've had many variations of this recipe. After much experimentation, I developed this recipe, which is virtually identical in flavor to the palak served at Namaste, a local Indian restaurant. My version is lower in fat, but still wonderfully flavorful. 

I'm posting this recipe for a student in one of my online classes, who assures me she's had some experience with Indian cooking. If you're a beginning cook, or if you're new to Indian cooking, be aware that this recipe requires you to make some judgment calls as you're cooking. It may take a few times preparing this recipe before you get the hang of it!  
One more thing: If you don't have kasoori methi or garam masala, do not attempt this recipe until you trek to your local Indian market (or order them online, if you don't have an Indian market in your area). Kasoori methi is the ingredient that gives palak its unique flavor, and garam masala's sweet-spicy flavor balances out the dish.


4 cups water
1 medium red onion
2 teaspoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon turmeric
16 ounces spinach
1 tablespoon margarine or butter
1 tablespoon bottled minced ginger
1 tablespoon bottled minced garlic
1 tablespoon kasoori methi, crushed
1 tablespoon garam masala


Combine water, turmeric and onion. Bring to a boil over high heat. When water boils, turn heat to medium and cook until onion is just tender. Don't over- or under-cook, or the mouthfeel of the final product will be off. Add spinach, and cook until spinach wilts. Drain well.
Place spinach-onion mixture in blender and puree, using the pulse feature, until just creamed (similar to creamed spinach). Don't over- or under-puree, or the texture of the final product will be off.
Meanwhile, combine margarine, ginger, garlic, kasoori methi, and garam masala in large skillet. Cook on medium-high heat until garlic is fragrant, stirring often, about 3 minutes.

Add spinach puree to skillet and cook on low until flavors blend, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. (You will see a change in color in the spinach; it will shift from bright green to a dull olive, to a dark green. You're looking for that dark green color in the final product.)