Mere texted me today asking for dinner ideas… I feel kinda bad because I know that was a big motivating factor for her to start this blog in the first place- she’s looking for inspiration in that department. One thing I really like about our family, is that we almost always, with a few exceptions, in the case of a takeout night or a restaurant meal, sit down to a home cooked meal together. However, I am a little embarrassed to admit, its now been almost two weeks since I’ve cooked dinner. Mr. Allie recently gave up moonlighting nights, so he’s psyched to be able to cook again. Plus, with the holidays being upon us, we’ve had the pleasure of enjoying a few dinners with friends and family. Thank you, friends and family!
Tonight my no-cooking-dinner-streak continues, as Mr. Allie is at a work-related holiday party and there are lots of leftovers in the fridge. So, read on for a really great go-to recipe that I make often!
Most of these ingredients I keep on hand at all times, with the exception of the fresh basil, which I only have in my garden during the growing season. Hence the option of using smoked paprika. I also think this recipe is great because its very adaptable- you can use more/less of the ingredients or swap things out, as suits your family. It can even be a great meatless supper if you are so inclined…
Sorry no photos, since I am not actually making it now. Hopefully Mere can provide some photos if she decides she wants to try it.
1 dozen large uncooked shrimp, peeled & deveined
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon garlic powder
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil (optional), or
1 tablespoon smoked paprika (also optional)
4 slices thick-cut bacon
3 cups milk
1 bag frozen corn
salt and pepper to taste
Put your shrimp in a bowl with the olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and smoked paprika or fresh basil.
Slice up your bacon into little rectangles, known in the fancy-schmancy food world as “lardon.” Put them in your soup pot and then put a medium-low fire under them.
While this is doing it’s thing, cut your potatoes and onions into bite-size pieces. ***You do not have to peel the potatoes!*** Nice.
Once your lardon have rendered out their delicious fat, fish out the crispy bits with a slotted spoon. Put the crispies on a paper towel to drain and set aside.
Now turn the heat up to medium high and chuck in the potatoes. Salt and pepper. Let them get a little softer and maybe get a bit of brown on them (yum), and then in go the onions. Once the onions start to get cooked down a bit, put the milk in and toss in the whole bag of frozen corn. You don’t even need to defrost it first. Just walk away.
When you are about 15 minutes before wanting to sit down to dinner, put your shrimp either a) on the grill if it’s a beautiful warm evening and the sun is setting over your back yard, or b) on a cookie sheet in a 375 degree oven if you are toasty warm in your cozy little kitchen on a winters eve.
Take a taste of your soup and adjust the seasoning. It will probably need a good bit of salt. When its to your liking, get out your handy-dandy immersion blender and whiz your chowder until its thick but still pretty chunky.
Serve in shallow bowls and garnish with roasted shrimp & crisp bacon. This is another one that I’d warm up some crusty bread for.
Good luck, Mere. Fingers crossed, no more horror stories.