Saturday, April 18, 2009

Lemony Peppered Shrimp on Pasta & Asparagus

Yummy. Quick to prepare. That's all I need to say!

I used asparagus, tiger shrimps and pasta meat sauce that I made & stocked in my freezer. Which you can substitute with whatever you prefer or have on hand (string beans, chicken, you get the point)

So, pour yourself a glass of wine, and here we go...

Lemony Peppered Shrimp on Pasta & Asparagus
per portion, approximately

  • 6-7 asparagus (because I like a lot of vegetables) washed.
  • spaghetti (the amount that you want to eat)
  • 1/2 cup tomato pasta sauce (I don't like a pool of sauce in my pasta dish) with meat or without.
  • a splash of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 3-4 shrimps, shelled & cleaned
  • a couple of grates of lemon zest & squeezes of lemon juice
  • pepper

In a medium large pot, boil water. Throw asparagus in for about 2 minutes. Take out and dump into a pot of really cold water to stop them from cooking any longer.

Keep the water boiling, cook pasta until al dente. Remove pot from heat to drain.

Put a pan on the burner, lower heat to medium high. Put meat sauce in and stir. Heat til bubbly, which takes only a half minute or so, drop the pasta back in. Cook for another 30 seconds to a minute. Place asparagus on plate. Put pasta & sauce on top.

Bring the pan back on the burner. Heat olive oil & swirl it around. Throw in the garlic. The immediately the shrimp. Stir. While shrimps cook, add in a couple of squeezes of lemon juice. Once they are cooked, grind pepper on top, and add the lemon zest. Place on top of everything else in the place.

What? you already finished your glass of wine???? Tsk tsk tsk!!! Go on, quick! Pour yourself another and grab a fork. I won't tell....

Friday, April 17, 2009

Everyone's favorite brownies

A close friend of mine calls these brownies "the ones with the goop"

I got the recipe from Baking Bites whose creation was inspired from a box of Peppermint Jo-Jo's cookies. I don't like peppermint in my sweets, so I just used regular Oreo cookies. The only thing I changed was the amount of sugar, as usual :)

Oreo Brownies

(adapted from Baking Bites)
  • 1 cup butter
  • 6 squares unsweetened chocolate (like Baker's)
  • 2 cups sugar (Baking Bites used 3 cups)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 18 roughly chopped Oreo cookies

Preheat oven to 350F

Line a 9x13 inch baking pan with parchment paper, with long sides extended for easy lifting when brownies are done without making a mess

Melt butter and chocolate in a medium large saucepan over low heat, stir occasionally. Whisk in sugar, salt and vanilla, then turn off heat.

Whisk in eggs, one at a time, making sure each is fully incorporated before adding the next.

Stir in flour and cocoa powder until everything is well blended. Drop the chopped Oreo cookies in, stir and pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake for about 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs but not coated with butter.

Cool brownies in pan for about 20 minutes, then lift out by the ends of parchment paper and place on wire rack to cool before slicing.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

What's-in-the-pantry soup

I love soup. Chunky vegetable soup. And this recipe is just that.

I usually make a big pot of this, store in the fridge and just eat it throughout the week. It takes 5-10 minutes to throw together, literally. And it can be super versatile. Depending on what you have in your pantry you can swap things around to adjust it to your taste.

What's-in-the-pantry chunky veggie soup

recipe by Tram

  • a splash of olive oil
  • a few garlic, cubed, or minced, up to you
  • 1 onion, red or white, chopped chunky
  • 3-4 carrots, cubed
  • 3-4 celery stalks, cubed
  • kernels of 2 boiled ears of corn (or 1 can of corn)
  • 1 small can of whole Italian tomatoes, with juice (or whatever kind you have, stewed, chopped, etc)
  • 1 box of chicken broth or vegetable broth (about 1 L, it'd be great if you have home-made stock, in which case you will need 1.5 - 2 L)
  • 1 big can of either kidney beans, lentils or chickpeas
  • dried rosemary, oregano, parsley, basil, cayenne pepper
  • sea salt, pepper, pepper flakes (again, you can use whatever you prefer)

Heat olive oil in a big pot on medium low, throw in the garlic, onions, then the carrots and celery, let them sweat for about 3 minutes, stir a bit to even them out in the space. Sprinkle a pinch of salt.

Throw in the corn, sprinkle all the spices into the mix, I usually do 2 shakes of each and add more later. Stir to coat evenly.

Stick a knife in the can of the tomatoes and cut them up roughly. Don't splash yourself!

Throw the tomatoes in, with juice and everything. Stir and let sit for about 2 minutes.

Dump the broth in. Now, most likely your box of broth say "Do not dilute" but go ahead and do it by adding another half box of water into the pot (***You obviously don't have to do this if you don't want to, but I find that the commercial broth has a distinctive smell, and I break that by doing this and adding the spices)

Turn heat to high.

Rinse the canned beans under cold water in a strainer. Throw it in. And when it's boiling, it's ready! You can add more spice, salt and pepper to taste.

***note: sometimes right after the beans, I throw in a handful of those tiny little round pasta that are made for soups. They won't expand or go mushy being in the liquid day after day in the fridge. It's awesome! And wait for it to cool down then store it in the fridge, well covered.

Dig in! Add some hot sauce if you'd like, that's what my boyfriend would do :)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A sprinkle of love

Always finish cooking or baking with a sprinkle of love. So if the food doesn't turn out so well, at least the love is there...

And the love definitely shows through.

And love concurs all... well, unless "all" are crispy burnt meringue cookies, then love might have to make an exception and look the other way...

Love makes you do crazy things, like baking at midnight for example... *sigh*

Welcome to my kitchen, where you are not allowed...

So, I have a blog... Let me just start by saying welcome to Tramie's Kitchen, where Baking @ Midnight happens quite often.

The purpose of this blog (I still feel weird writing that...) is to yack about my baking & cooking urges, followed by posted pictures of the final products of my obsession. A pretty selfish purpose if you ask me, but a girl is allowed to have her me-time (in this case YOUR time if you're reading this...)

Enough rambling, I must stop before I say something stupid. Oh, but before I leave, if you're wondering about the title of this very 1st blog, why is it "Welcome to my kitchen, where you are not allowed... " then the answer is: anyone who knows me, knows when I'm cooking or baking, I'm in a trance. I don't hear anything else, I don't see anything else, and I definitely don't answer to anything.

And I "don't" all of that with love of course :)

So enjoy your time here. I hope I will be able to keep you entertained :)