seafood salad

Black Plum Bread Pudding

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Plums

Plums

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5  Reasons We Love Plums
By Erika Freeman
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1. “Plum” is often used to describe a deep purple hue, but in fact plums come in a wide spectrum of colors, such as black, yellow, red, pink, even green.
2. Dark plums (purple, black) are full of anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins, antioxidants that give them their color and are associated with helping to keep the heart healthy and the brain sharp.
3. Without the plum, we wouldn’t have prunes! Oh, but excuse us, we call them “dried plums” now. (In 2000, the prune was renamed to make it easier to market—apparently prunes’ reputation as a fruit to keep you regular was no longer a selling point.)
4. They have an au naturel protection; called a “bloom,” it’s a natural wax coating the fruit produces to keep its skin from losing water. Look for the whitish-silvery bloom: it’s also a sign a plum hasn’t been over-handled.
5. This juicy sweet treat has only about 36 calories.
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This plum bread pudding was the glorious end to a great meal I had with my friends Laura, Fernando and André at my house the other day.
It was the first multi- course dinner I hosted at home in four years and it reminded me how much I miss these gatherings with great food, drink and company that were so common and frequent at the homes Maria’s and I shared for so many years in times past. Happy dinner parties were the highlights of our social life when she was still alive and sometimes I miss them, along with so many other things we shared.
Although Maria was not physically present at this dinner, her spirit was with us and so it was only the second social gathering I was happy at since her passing.
(Xmas dinner at Dieters and Chachas house being the only other occasion) 🙂
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So, while the seafood salad, tenderloin steak, flat iron steak, teriyaki cauliflower and tomato/garlic pasta were delicious, the highlight was the dessert in the form of this black plum pudding.
Plums are wonderful to prepare cakes and tatin’s with, superb for marmalade and compote and, as you can see below, just perfect for bread pudding.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Bread Pudding  on  ChefsOpinion
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Bread And Black Plum Pudding

Bread And Black Plum Pudding

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Bread And Black Plum Pudding

Bread And Black Plum Pudding

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Bread And Black Plum Pudding

Bread And Black Plum Pudding

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Pasta Salad With Squid And Sun-Dried Tomatoes

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Conventional  wisdom dictates that squid (Calamari) for salad should be cooked in liquid or steam.
Not so, say I 🙂
I am of the opinion that squid when done in liquid lack enough taste and texture to add interest to a salad. In my opinion, coating the squid with a mixture of corn starch and corn meal, then frying them in very hot oil to a scrumptious crisp, will give a far superior result and brings out the best of the little sea critters. Should you decide to use this method, add the squid to the top of the salad for presentation, then mix with the rest of the salad just before eating to ensure the crispness of the squid.
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
When cooking pasta for salad, you should cook the pasta all the way ! Al dente is for hot dishes;
It is not a good texture for pasta salads. (This is of course my very own opinion, make your own decision according to your own preference 🙂
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Pasta Salad With Squid And Sundried Tomatoes

Pasta Salad With Squid And Sun-Dried Tomatoes

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Pasta Salad With Squid And Sundried Tomatoes

Pasta Salad With Squid And Sun-Dried Tomatoes

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll



After being sick as a dog for the past few day’s, today I can at least walk again without fear of falling on my behind because my legs could not hold me up. So, as any sane person would do, the first thing to do was to prep a meal that would make me feel better. Shrimp and mayo might not seem very smart as a first solid meal in three day’s, but I am happy to report that three hours later I am still ok 🙂
(In case you wonder how I posted the last post about the fish in black bean sauce:
I usually have one or two post’s on stand-by for situations like this and all it needs is the push of a button, the rest takes care of itself)
Anyway, I hope my recovery is going to last for a good time to come and things will be back to normal, at least healthwise.
So here we go, today’s early, delicious lunch:

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll



Preparation :

mise en place

mise en place

shrimp, green peas, golden grpe tomatoes, radish, scallion

shrimp, green peas, golden grape tomatoes, radish, scallion

mayonnaise, sriracha, ketchup, brandy, horseradish, dijon mustard, kosher salt, cayenne pepper, lime juice

mayonnaise, sriracha, ketchup, brandy, horseradish, dijon mustard, kosher salt, cayenne pepper, lime juice

slice italian garlic roll in half (toasting optional)

slice italian garlic roll in half (toasting optional)

top with romaine leaves in  lime vinaigrette

top with romaine leaves in lime vinaigrette

top with generaos amount of shrimp salad

top with generous amount of shrimp salad, garnish with fennel leaves

serve with lime wedges and arugula in french dressing

serve with lime wedges and arugula in french dressing

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll

Old Fashioned Shrimp Roll



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Spiders From Mars

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Just  a light dinner tonight with one of my favorite ingredients – Octopus.
In the seventies I spent a lot of time in the  Mediterranean  and some of my  fondest memories take me back to  Turkey,  Spain  and  Greece and their great seafood.. Almost all memories I possess of that time are connected to food. Parties, dates, travel, good times and bad times, all somehow  lead to (mostly) great meals. Most involved seafood of one way or another. While there were too many outstanding meals to count, the ones I remember the most were the many octopus dishes I had, and of those, the ones I had in  Mykonos. To this day I can picture exactly in my head walking along the very small area in town, right on the water, where the fishermen had hung up their freshly caught little monsters on racks in the fresh air. We used to pick the ones which appealed to us the most, took a chair at one of the tiny restaurants right there on the other side of the walk way and just pointed the waiter to our catch, which he then took to the cook who added nothing more than salt, garlic,  olive oil  and lemon juice and grilled it to perfection. Memories……….
I am fond of octopus of any size and any preparation, so today on my way home from work when I saw some nice baby octopus at my neighborhood Asian store, there was only one option for dinner tonight : ” Baby Octopus Salad ” .
( Once I looked at the finished dish,   ” Spiders From Mars ”   just came to my mind and stuck there   🙂
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Click to hear  “Spiders From Mars
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Real Food, Real Opinions &  ”  REAL MUSIC  ”
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When it comes to baby octopus, folk’s have different opinions and preferences. Some people eat the head, others remove it (me). Some grill or saute them straight, others simmer them first until tender (me), then continue to grill or saute. Some like them in complicated sauces, others just simply grilled or sauted (me). Baby octopus curry anyone? Good stuff   🙂  So if you love seafood but have not yet tried these little creatures, it is high time to get a bit adventurous and put them on the menu.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Late Night Snack: Romaine, Tomatoes, Eggs & Seafood

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What  a great, tasty snack last night at 1.00 am.
Just about three minutes of preparation,
but a great, very enjoyable meal  🙂
If you use canned food, just make sure it is of
very good quality, a few extra $ will make a
big difference in taste, texture and appearance.

I used a simple Dijon mustard vinaigrette,
grape tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs, romaine
lettuce, octopus, mussels, sesame grissini
and sprinkled some Chili flakes on top.
Voila ! Good eat’n !
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Bon Appetit !  Life is Good !
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Seafood & Pasta Salad

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I came  home from work early today and the
weather outside was just gorgeous . What better than
a book, ice tea and a cool  seafood  salad that can
be prepared in a few minutes. Great afternoon, recharged
my batteries and feel wonderfully relaxed.
Now it is time for a new post, then dinner and a movie,
“Ziti in Wodka Sauce” and “Kill shot”  with  Christopher Walken.

Life is Good !
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Ingredient’s :

Conchigliette,  cooked, drained
Shrimps,  
poached, peeled, tails remove except three for garnish
Octopus,  canned, drained
Straw mushroom,  canned, drained
Tuna,  canned, drained
Peppers,  diced (3 colors)
Garlic,  paste
Cilantro,  chopped
Scallion,  sliced
Cucumber,  sliced
Egg,  hard boiled,  sliced
Mayonnaise,  freshly made
– (it only takes a minute to make and it’s so much better than store bought)
Horseradish cream,
Lime juice,
Kosher salt,
Black pepper,  freshly ground
Olive oil,
Vinegar,

Method :

Take 1/4 of the seafood and marinade with lime, salt,
pepper and olive oil.
Mix remaining seafood , pasta, part of the horseradish
cream, mayo, peppers, lime juice, salt and pepper. Adjust
seasoning to your liking. Place salad on bottom of bowl,
top with the marinated seafood.
To serve, drizzle eggs and cucumber with olive oil and vinegar,
sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve with some horseradish
cream to dip the shrimp.   Enjoy  🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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” Seafood & Arugula Salad “

Quick and tasty.
Use any seafood you like, just make sure it is FRESH !    🙂