Friday, April 23, 2010

Garlic-Jalapeno Shrimp with Cilantro Rice

I'd like to interrupt my boring vacation posts with an actual recipe post! Don't worry, for the 5 of you who care about the vacation, I'll finish it up next week.

I love it when I open my mailbox & new magazines are inside. It doesn't take me long to flip through them & choose the recipes I want to make. The Garlic-Jalapeno Shrimp and Rice with Peas & Cilantro recipes in this month's Martha Stewart caught my attention. I made them last night & they turned out pretty good. I took the liberty of making a few changes, but if you want the original recipe you can dig on Martha's site to find it.

Garlic-Jalapeno Shrimp


* 1 Jalapeno Pepper, finely diced
* Juice of 1 lime
* 1 lb. shrimp, peeled & deveined
* 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
* 3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
* Salt
* Pepper
* Lime wedges for serving


1. Stir together garlic, jalapeno, lime juice & 1 tbsp. EVOO.

2. Add shrimp, season with salt & pepper and toss to coat.

3. Transfer to a Ziploc & put in refrigerator to marinate for 45 minutes.

4. In the meantime, prepare rice (below).

5. When ready to cook the shrimp, heat remaining 2 tbsp. EVOO in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Remove shrimp from marinade and add to skillet. Cook until done, about 1.5 minutes per side.

Rice with Peas & Cilantro


* 1 cup cilantro, chopped & stems reserved
* 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
* 1 medium onion, chopped
* 1 Garlic Clove, minced
* 1/4 tsp Chili Powder
* Salt
* Pepper
* 1 cup Long Grain Rice (I used Uncle Ben's)
* 1 1/2 cups water
* 1 1/2 cups peas


1. Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Cook onion & garlic until tender, 5 - 8 minutes.

2. Add chili powder, season with salt & pepper and cook another minutes.

3. Add rice & stir to coat.

4. Add water, cilantro stems and bring to a boil.

5. Reduce head to low, cover and gently simmer until water is absorbed, 15 - 20 minutes. Note: You may have to add water or adjust the time. Refer to the instructions on your rice package.

6. When done, remove from heat and add peas. Cover and let stand for 10 minutes. (I don't have a photo of this step because I didn't do it. I don't care for peas, so I left them out).

7. Fish out the cilantro stems, season with salt & pepper and stir in chopped cilantro.

To Serve: Scoop rice onto a plate, add shrimp & sprinkle generously with lime juice.

My Tid-Bits:

* You can use a variety of different types of rice. Just be sure to adjust your water & cook time appropriately.

* In my opinion, the rice was a bit bland (perhaps it was because I left out the peas). Next time I will add even more cilantro & stir in some lime juice.

* Martha says to tie your cilantro stems together with kitchen twine, but let's be honest...who has that just laying around? Not me. I just tossed the stems in & fished them out later. It wasn't hard.

* This meal is relatively low in calories. I made 30 medium shrimp and called 15 shrimp 1 serving. Each serving of shrimp has 222 calories. The rice makes about 4 serving with 270 calories each.

Washington D.C. - Day 3

On our third day in Washington, D.C., we had a reservation to tour the Capitol building. We had a bit of time before our tour, so we stopped by the Library of Congress.

The inside of the building is beautiful! We didn't have a whole lot of time to explore, but did get to see a few of the things they have on exhibit. (And to my Chi Omega sisters: No, I did not go find our book. Although I did think about it and when I mentioned it to The Hubs, he laughed at me).

From there we went across the street for our Capitol tour - which was surprisingly short. We saw a film about the history, toured the Rotunda and Statuary Hall and that was it.

Of course we had to find the Texas statue: Sam Houston

From there we grabbed a quick lunch at the National Museum of the American Indian, where they serve questionable "traditional Indian food."

After lunch, we had to make some decisions. There were still several things we wanted to see, but not enough time for them all. We ended up choosing to visit the American History Museum (which in my opinion was a good choice).

We got to see many important artifacts from American History.

Like Dorothy's Ruby Slippers...

The lunch counter from the famous Sit-In at Greensboro...


Be still my heart! Look at all of her gadgets! I didn't even know what some of them were.

That night we went to dinner at The Oceanaire Seafood Room where we had an all-around good meal. They fly fresh fish in each day & offer a wide variety of seafood. Our meal started with some complimentary pickled herring & accompaniments (sounds odd, but was actually good).

I had the Stuffed Canadian Turbot with Brie Cheese, Blue Crab & Bay Shrimp. YUMMO!

Finally, by our 3rd night of dinner I had learned to eat less & SAVE ROOM FOR DESSERT. Especially when one of my faves, BAKED ALASKA, is on the menu. Their presentation was impressive (and I think a bit unnerving for The Hubs who wasn't quite sure what was going on). It started like this...

And quickly turned to this...

The ice cream was Buttered Pecan. Mmmmm!

This dessert was probably enough for 4 people to share...I won't say if we managed to eat it all...

After dinner, we waddled our way back to our hotel for an early bedtime since we had to get up extra early the next day for our drive to Gettysburg.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Washington D.C. - Day 2

Our second full day in D.C. was mostly spent seeing the monuments & doing A LOT of walking.

We started the day at the Lincoln Memorial.

I've seen tons of pictures of the Lincoln Memorial, but had no idea just how big Abe's statue really is! I wanted to climb up & sit in his lap for a picture, but The Hubs advised that that probably wasn't a good idea considering all the "KEEP OFF THE STATUE" signs posted around.

From there we walked over to the Korean War Memorial.

There were plaques etched with the number of casualties of this war:

And then this...

Can I get an AMEN?

We continued our tour of the memorials with the World War II Memorial. It was neat to see so many Veterans there who had fought in the war & had come to pay tribute to their comrades.

After seeing the WWII Memorial, we completed the circle around the Reflecting Pool with a stop at the Vietnam Memorial. It was neat to see people finding the names of their loved ones on the wall.

Finally, we completed our touring for the day with a visit to Arlington National Cemetery. This was probably one of my favorite places on our trip just because of its meaning. The cemetery is 624 acres & is the resting place of over 300,000 Veterans & dignitaries from the Civil War to the present.

The Cherry Blossoms had begun to fall off the trees & they looked like pink snow covering the ground.

We also witnessed the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

A guard has been on duty at the site continuously, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, since July 2, 1937. Very touching to see.

From Arlington, we headed back to our hotel to rest up for a bit before dinner.

The restaurant I chose for dinner on this particular evening I found via online digging. Once I saw the menu at Chef Geoff's & read the great reviews, I had to go there.

There were several things on the Lil' Snacks & Appetizer menus that I would have loved to try, but The Hubs wasn't feeling quite as adventurous, so we went with the Dill Potato Chips with Tzatziki. I'll be honest, I had to Google "Tzatziki" while sitting at the table. It is yogurt mixed with cucumbers, garlic, salt, olive oil, pepper, dill and sometimes lemon juice and parsley. They had me at "dill" and homemade potato chips. Delicious! If we hadn't been in public, I might have licked the bowl.

For my main course, I ordered the Chicken Trofie, Applewood Bacon, Spinach, Tomato Cream. I had to Google "Trofie", too. I love restaurants where I have to look up things on the menu because it means I'm learning & trying new things! Trofie is a thin twisted pasta with a texture similar to gnocchi.

This dish was really good, too, but again WAY MORE than I could eat...meaning no room for dessert.

(Again, my apologies for the poor quality of the pics. They were taking with my phone in dim lighting).

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Washington D.C. - Day 1

Sorry I've been MIA for the past week. The Hubs & I went on a much needed mini-vacation! It was more of whirlwind than relaxing, but it was a vacation nonetheless. We spent 3 full days in Washington D.C., 1 day at Gettysburg & Dutch Country, and 1 day in Philadelphia. Neither of us had ever been to D.C. & the secret history nerd inside each of us was excited to see the sites & visit the museums.

One of my FAVORITE things about vacations to new places is finding new, yummy places to eat. Before we ever go on a trip, I spend a bit (okay, a lot) of time researching restaurants, asking friends for recommendations, etc. So while I share my trip with you all, I'm also going to share the yummy food we ate!

Disclaimer: DON'T JUDGE THE NUMBERS OF CALORIES WE MAY HAVE CONSUMED. Vacation calories don't count. Right?? And some of the pics are low quality because I took them with my iPhone as to not look like a total weirdo taking pics of my food.

On with the trip.

Arrival & Day 1

We arrived in DC around 9:00 PM on Wednesday. Once we got to our hotel via the Metro, we were starving. It just so happened that a D.C. mainstay was right across from our hotel. We thought this was an appropriate way to start the trip...

We got up early the next morning and began our trip with a visit to the Washington Monument. We took the elevator to the top & the views were amazing. You could see every monument & memorial across town.

We had a little bit of time before our next scheduled tour, so we made a quick trip to the National Air & Space Museum. We only had time to check out the "Air" part, but it was pretty cool.

By the time we were done there, we only had a few minutes to get to our next destination & still needed to grab lunch. In the Mall area of DC, there really aren't many obvious places to eat other than museum cafes or from street carts - which seemed a bit sketchy to us. We stumbled upon this cart...

And grabbed a quick fast-food-from-a-cart lunch. Not ideal, but we were in a hurry.

Next we visited the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. This is one place I think everyone should visit. The stories & accounts of what these people experienced is heart wrenching & will leaving a lasting impact on anyone who visits. Before you enter the exhibit, you are given a card that tells the story of a Holocaust victim. When inside you learn the detailed history of the events leading up to & during the Holocaust, as well as personal accounts from the victims. Unfortunately, you aren't allowed to take photos inside the museum, but I found this one online...

You can walk into the cattle car that is the exact same as the type used to transport the Jews to concentration camp.

They also exhibit huge piles of thousands of shoes, brushes, clothing & other personal items belonging to the Jews that were killed in concentration camps. The Hubs & I spent over 2 hours in this museum and could have spent more if our schedule permitted.

By this point we had walked several miles & our little feet were a bit tired, so we headed back to the hotel to rest & get cleaned up for our dinner at the famous Old Ebbitt Grill.

We choose this restaurant because it was recommended by multiple people. The food was good, but people come more for its history & ambiance. We started with some delicious calamari & a house salad with cucumber, tomatoes & basil vinaigrette.

For our main course, The Hubs & I both had the Trout Parmesan. It was a parmesan crusted rainbow trout, flash fried, topped with hollandaise sauce, roasted potatoes and broccoli. So good & rich! (I forgot to take a picture, but found this one on Food Network. Apparently the recipe is on there, too).

There was no hope for dessert. We weren't even able to finish our fish. One of these days The Hubs & I will learn to share dishes instead of ordering too much food & over eating...and worst of all, not have room for dessert.

After dinner we waddled our cholesterol filled arteries back to the hotel for a good nights rest before another busy day!