Big Papi’s Deviled Shrimp Ragu

Big Papi’s Deviled Shrimp Ragu
+1/2 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined – shells reserved
+1 bay leaf
+1 pinch smoked paprika
+1 cup water
+1/2 lemon, juiced
+1/4 cup ketchup
+1 tablespoon brown sugar
+1/2 teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper
+1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
+1 clove garlic, minced
+salt to taste
+1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
+1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
+1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
+1 tablespoon minced fresh chives


Place shrimp shells into a saucepan with bay leaf and 1 pinch of smoked paprika over medium-low heat; cook and stir shells until they turn pink, about 5 minutes. Pour in water, bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, and simmer shrimp stock for 20 to 25 minutes.

Mix lemon juice, ketchup, brown sugar, ground chipotle pepper, 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika, garlic, 1 pinch of salt, and cayenne pepper in a bowl.

Strain shrimp stock into a bowl; discard shells and bay leaf. Whisk shrimp stock into ketchup mixture and set aside.

Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over high heat until small wisps of smoke rise from the skillet. Cook shrimp in the hot oil until bottom sides of shrimp are seared and browned, about 3 minutes. Stir in shrimp stock mixture and cook until shrimp are opaque, about 3 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a bowl using a slotted spoon, leaving sauce in skillet.

Bring sauce to a boil and cook until sauce has reduced and thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in cold butter, turn off heat, and let residual heat of pan melt butter. Stir until butter has incorporated into sauce and sauce is slightly thickened.

Stir shrimp into sauce and toss with chives. Serve shrimp with sauce over a bed of rice or noodles.

Chicken Fajita Omelet

Chicken Fajita Omelet

4 Egg(s)
2 tbsp Milk
add Salt and Black Pepper (a generous pinch or two of each)
½ lbs Chicken (tenders, cooked and sliced)
2 tsp Lime (juice)
2 Bell Pepper (I used 1 red and 1 green)
½ Red Onion (sliced thin half moons)
2 Garlic (cloves, minced)
1 tsp Taco Seasoning (or fajita seasoning)
1 tsp Oregano
1 tbsp Olive Oil
to taste Salt and Black Pepper
1 Avocado (diced)
¼ Cup Cotija Cheese (or crumbled feta)
add Salsa (medium or hot, per your liking)
1 Lime (cut into wdges)
add Sour Cream (as per liking)
add Cilantro (for garnish)


Preheat oven to 350°F.

Heat fajitas in microwave according to package directions. Cut into bite‑size pieces and set aside.

Beat eggs and milk together in medium bowl; season with salt and pepper and set aside.

Heat basting oil in 10‑inch ovenproof skillet over Medium‑High heat until very hot but not smoking.

Add squash, onion, and bell pepper; sauté 5 minutes or until just beginning to soften, stirring continuously.

Add fajitas to skillet, and stir to distribute evenly; pour eggs over top and sprinkle with cheese.

Place in oven and bake 15 to 20 minutes or until omelet puffs up and eggs are set in the center. Remove from oven.

Loosen omelet around edges of pan and slide onto plate. Spoon guacamole and sour cream over omelet and top with pico de gallo. Serve while hot.

Dijon Chicken Stew

Dijon Chicken Stew

¼ cup water
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup sliced shallots
¼ cup chopped garlic
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried
1 cup dry white wine
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
8 cups chopped escarole (1 medium head)
1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium chicken broth
⅛ teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Whisk water, mustard and cornstarch in a small bowl; set aside.

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic and rosemary; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add wine, cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the wine is almost evaporated, 5 to 6 minutes.

Add chicken, escarole and broth. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Whisk the cornstarch mixture and add to the pot. Bring the stew to a boil and cook for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.

San Francisco Pork Chops

San Francisco Pork Chops

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 (3/4 inch-thick) boneless pork chops, trimmed
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup beef broth
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons water

Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Brown chops in hot oil, about 5 minutes per side; remove pork to a plate, reserving oil in skillet.

Cook and stir garlic in reserved drippings until fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk beef broth, soy sauce, brown sugar, 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, and red pepper flakes in a bowl, dissolving brown sugar. Return pork chops to skillet and pour soy sauce mixture over the chops. Bring sauce to a boil, cover skillet, and reduce heat to low. Simmer chops until tender, 30 to 35 minutes, turning once halfway through cooking.

Transfer chops to a serving platter. Whisk cornstarch and water in a small bowl until smooth; stir into pan juices and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Pour sauce over chops to serve.

I like it with a bit more red pepper than stated in the recipe. It gives it more zing. Also, I often leave the extra oil out of the sauce as the residual in the pan is usually enough. This works great with thinner chops as well, just reduce the simmering time or you’ll get tough chops.