"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?" ~ Mary Oliver

hot korean shrimp, green beans and mango salsa . . .

DSCN9133.jpgDSCN9130.jpgI remember reading a recipe for a broiled shrimp and green beans using Korean hot sauce a couple of weeks ago. I didn’t have any at the time so I waited for some to arrive on my Amazon conveyor belt! It’s called Korean chili gochujang sauce and I thought I’d open it today to make a marinade for some extra-large shrimp from the freezer and French green beans from Trader Joe’s.

As I recall, the recipe called for two tablespoons of the hot sauce, some soy sauce, grated garlic and fresh ginger root and honey.  I had a batch of homemade teriyaki sauce (soy, mirin, sake, sugar heated and cooled) and added a couple of tablespoons to the mix. Squeezed in some fresh lime juice. Sounds like a classic combo, doesn’t it? That recipe didn’t call for parboiling the beans, but as I make Asian green beans quite often, I find that it’s an essential step before finishing the beans either in the skillet or under the broiler. After trimming the ends, I boiled a handful of beans for about 15 minutes, drained them well, rinsing under cold water. When they had cooled, I dumped them into the plastic bin that held the marinade, shook them up and left them to absorb the sauce. Two thirds of the marinade had already been siphoned off for the shrimp in their shells.

The recipe called for heating the broiler and placing the baking sheet of beans and shrimp as close to the heat as possible. Instead, I think I’ll put it on a top level but not right up to the top. I’ll broil the beans first, turning them over with tongs as they cook. When they’re close to being done, I’ll place the shrimp on the sheet until just cooked. This meal might be a little messy to peel the shrimp from their shells, but I can guarantee you that the shrimps will be more tender with all the flavor of the shells than if cooked unshelled. But that’s our preference.DSCN9126

To go along with the heat in the shrimp and beans, I’m serving couscous with pine nuts at room temperature in a bowl. And to complement the meal, I made some fresh honey mango salsa: 2 peeled ripe mangoes, chopped red onion, fresh lime juice and fresh cilantro leaves – chilled in the fridge while everything else was cooking away.



“pillow (covering) talk” . . .


Do you sometimes get the urge to change the cushions on your sofa but don’t want to pay $49 a pop for new covers? I had three 20 X 20 inch pillows that I found at TJ Maxx in June.

Lately, I’ve been thinking of changing the look and using some Japanese fabric that I’ve collected over the years. As I wrapped one up to preview how it might look, I folded the back together like a gift wrap with straight pins. I did another one in a different fabric, and then the third.

To fasten them semi-permanently, I’ll probably sew them lightly together or even try out some double-sided fabric tape for easy removal later. This process also skips having to dig out the sewing machine, hand hemming and wasting fabric that you can’t use for anything else – except to make pincushions!

I’m posting this description and photos to illustrate how easy it is! And how flexible this “gift wrap system” might be for those who like to change things around a lot – but not having to cut into fabric that will be useless for anything else later. These fabrics can also used later on as table runners or coverings to hide the foodstuffs in your pantry!

Oh, and the dimensions for each piece of fabric were approximately 28-30 inches length of a 44-45 inch wide piece of fabric. So, for a little less than a yard of fabric, who knows what the possibilities might be?

P.S. I’m staying with the three blue striped “covers” for now.

chicken liver pate redux! . . .

fullsizeoutput_7cdWe’ve had a long heat wave up here in Massachusetts and today seemed like a good time to make some chicken liver pate to have on hand in the fridge. It’s especially good served on Triscuit crackers or whole grain toast (Dave’s 21 seed thin bread) for a lunch or a snack. Sliced cucumber and cream cheese would be good on the whole grain bread too, sliced in fingers like British tea sandwiches.

I was going to post the recipe I followed this morning but double-checked my previous posts on this topic and found that the steps are the same except I used one hard boiled egg instead of two. The Madeira sherry makes this dish although I noted previously that Marsala was okay too. Not.

So, I thought I’d leave it at that and provide a photo I took this morning. I’m looking forward to enjoying this savory treat during a slightly cooler time.