Hello there.

I have missed you.

I know it has been quite a while, but since I hadn’t been cooking, it was pointless to write. The 1st trimester of my pregnancy kicked my ever-widening ass.

And killed my taste buds.

But I am happy to announce that those problems are gone. I am out of the fog and living a new me. 17 weeks down and my taste buds are back, I can stomach the sight of chicken, and will stay up past 7 pm. It feels so good.
The Great Husband will tell you I am still not cooking as much or as well as I used to. And I admit, I am taking more shortcuts in the kitchen than usual, but I think the man is just plain spoiled. I am cooking again, and that should be good enough for now.
We had friends over a few weeks ago for dinner. I stole my mom’s easy entertaining idea and did a simple shrimp boil. SUPER easy, but a fun novelty for the right guests. Eating off newspaper may not be every one’s idea of a good time.
Served with a salad and some hearty bread, this meal will no doubt satisfy everyone.
Here is the salad I have been making a lot lately, inspired by Maggiano’s chopped salad:
CHOPPED SALAD
1 head iceberg lettuce, finely chopped
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
2 avocados, cut into small cubes
8 slices well cooked bacon, finely chopped
2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
1 cup blue cheese
DRESSING
2 Tb red wine vinegar
1 Tb Rice Wine Vinegar
1 Tb Sugar
1 tsp Dry Mustard
3 Tb vegetable oil
Salt and Pepper
To make dressing, add vinegars, sugar and mustard to a small bowl. Whisk in oils and season with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl, toss vegetable and cheese so everything is evenly distributed. Drizzle dressing in the bowl and toss again.
SHRIMP
In a large pot, add 4 qt water, 1/4 c vinegar, 4 Tb Old Bay Seasoning, 2 Tb Salt.
Add thin slices of 2 lemons.
Bring to a boil.
Add 2 lbs thawed raw, shell-on deveined shrimp.
Cook until shrimp are pink and tender, about 5-7 minutes.
Drain water. Pour shrimp and lemons directly on the table.
HOW TO SERVE
Make sure each guest gets a bowl for salad, plate for bread, slice of lemon, and small bowl of cocktail sauce, and wet wipes for their hands.
Tell participants to throw shells directly on the paper in a pile. It’s all about getting down and dirty and using your hands.
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