Wednesday, January 6, 2010


After our "Can't Say No Country Tasting Menu," AKA "Butterfest," I solemnly swore that I would avoid butter on our New Year's Weekend Menu. While packing the groceries I took some gorgeous shrimp out of the freezer to make a fast hot chili tomato sauce for pasta with shrimp for New Year's Eve dinner. Things didn't go down how I had planned.
He took a look at those shrimp and after a call to his mom in Florida, Markus was on his way to buttering up our dinner with her traditional New Year's Eve special shrimp dish. I saw him eyeing the butter in the fridge.
"At least half a stick..."
The last time we were up we left poor Rocco with a measly pat of butter, which Charlie the dog ate off the table and Rocco had "no choice" but to spread olive oil on his scone. I was fearing the same fate after this weekend.
"Let's do this!" High five to butter.
Thats a whole lot of butter with a whole lot of garlic. Add the shrimp and broil for 5 minutes.
Look how good those little suckers look! And they tasted even better over some spaghetti with a side of broccoli rabe.
Move over Rachel Ray. This was a 10 minute meal. Plenty of time to watch the ball drop.
For brunch on New Year's day we made Latkes with runny farm eggs. They were so oniony and fried to perfection and a great sopping device for over easy yokes.
We also made another family recipe, Markus' Mom's Stuffed Mushrooms. Boy, were these special. We ate them with a side of roasted carrots and fennel. Yes, there were butter in these Stuffed Mushrooms. I couldn't escape the butter no matter how hard I tried. (Note: I didn't try very hard.)
As the days grew colder, we needed to warm things up. I stole this awesome party idea from Melissa. Its zero degrees outside so have a beach party inside! We made Beer Battered Fish Tacos with some Alaskan halibut and Tim's Special Margaritas! Pardon the wine glass; it is salt rimmed.
The special creamy spicy sauce is key on proper fish tacos. I didn't have chipotle peppers so I roasted a red pepper and added plenty of cayenne. We also topped them with homemade salsa, fresh guacamole and cilantro. I was craving fish tacos and these totally hit the spot. I will be making these again soon. Next time I will make my own corn tortillas from scratch.

Happy eating in 2010! And lay off the butter... (Yeah right!)

New Year's Eve Buttery Garlic Shrimp

2 dozen medium shrimp, clean and deveined
Half stick of butter, at least
2 cloves of garlic chopped finely
1/4 C. chopped fresh parsley

Add all ingredients to a baking dish and broil for 5 min. Do not overcook the shrimp!
Serve over pasta.

Mama Koelbl's Shrooms

1 large basket of mushrooms (or 2 small)

1 1/3 cup Italian style breadcrumbs

½ onion chopped very finely

3 big cloves garlic chopped finely

½ cup parmesan cheese

½ cup oil

½ cup water

½ stick butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Clean mushrooms with a damp paper towel. Remove stems and set aside.

Cook stems 4-5 min in water. (We sauteed them in olive oil.) Drain and cool.

Chop up stems and mix with the rest of the ingredients (except butter) and add water as needed. Shouldn’t be too wet or dry. Let stand 10 min.

Butter a baking dish and cut up the rest of the stick into pats for the bottom of the dish.

Stuff mushrooms liberally (you will have plenty of stuffing). Line mushrooms in buttered baking dish.

Baking time varies. Could be 25 min, depending on oven. You want the mix to have a nice crust on top and the mushrooms dark brown.

Its Getting Cold Outside Fish Tacos, adapted from Baja Fried Fish Tacos

1 Can Beer
1 C. of flour
Salt and pepper
2lbs of halibut or other white flakey fish, cut into strips
Cayenne to taste
Paprika to taste
Special Creamy Sauce (recipe to follow)
Corn tortillas
Homemade Salsa
Homemade Guacamole

Combine beer, flour, salt and pepper in a bowl. Season fish with salt and pepper, cayenne and paprika. Coat fish in beer batter and fry in vegetable oil until golden.

Serve on corn tortilla with salsa, guacamole, special creamy sauce and cilantro.

Special Creamy Fish Taco Sauce adapted from Chipotle Tartar Sauce

1 Red Pepper Roasted, peeled and deseeded
1/4 C. onion relish
1 C. mayonnaise
Cayenne pepper
Salt and Pepper

Combine in a food processor. Season to a taste.


Markus said...

and don't forget, those shrimp were supposed to be served with spaghetti alfredo- The 2 headed dairy assault on the stomach and arteries.

I can't handle alfredo. Too much even for me.

Chef Fresco said...

Haha love this post! Those butter-soaked shrimp look amazing. And I love the idea about the indoor snow party :)