Shrimp and Chorizo Paella

This week, I decided it was time to make something very different, and something new that I’ve never tried before. So I went ahead and made authentic Chorizo and Shrimp Paella. It was incredible!

For the Chorizo, I used Organic chicken chorizo sausage from Sunworks organics from the Old Strathcona Farmer’s Market. I love their products. They have so many flavours of sausages, and they are all organic and delicious! Very go0d bang for your buck too!

I also used frozen shrimp (not organic), from superstore.

I always like to cook shrimps straight from frozen, so not to worry about there being any iffyness with raw fish thawing in the fridge. I run hot water from the tap over them until thawed. Takes no time at all, and it works every time!

I began by frying up the sausages in my non skit electric skillet.

When they are almost done, I added the shrimpies to cook up. Watch them carefully, they cook very very fast! I removed the meat from the skillet afterwards, so not to overcook.

Next, I sliced and diced all these tasty veggies.

I added them to the skillet with some paprika and garlic. hmm!

I have never purchased saffron before making this dish. I had to go to planet organic to find some, because they did not carry any at save on foods. When I got there, they had regular Spanish Saffron, and this ground American Saffron. Seeing as the American Saffron was 1/4 of the price, I picked it up, not caring what part of the world the saffron came from – They both were not local, after all! Interestingly enough, American Saffron is a cheap rip-off version of Spanish Saffron! It has a different taste, and consistency. You need to use 8x as much for the taste to come through (which I did not know while preparing this dish…) I think next time I make paella, I’ll just go with the regular Spanish Saffron!

The next step was to add the chicken broth and saffron to the veggies and bring to a boil.

I sprinkled in the rice and let it bubble and boil for a while.

Then I chopped up the chorizo that was waiting for me on the counter.

See the saffron colour? It’s beautiful eh? The taste didn’t come through though. I will add more next time.

I re-added the shrimp and the chorizo. Beautiful and tasty meal!

I would definitely make this again. Beautiful, tasty and very interesting. I would just add more saffron next time!

Jacquie’s Tasty Shrimp and Chorizo Paella (Courtesy of Gastronomy Blog)

You will need:

  • 25 threads saffron, crushed (a heaping 1⁄4 tsp.) – *I used ground. If using American, add 8x this!
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 lbs. extra-large shrimp in the shell
  • 4 small Chorizo sausages
  • 1 tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 4 medium tomatoes, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and chopped
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 2 1⁄2 cups short-grain rice, preferably Valencia or bomba (I used Jasmine)

Heat oil in a 16″–18″ paella pan (or curved non-stick skillet) over medium-high heat. Add Chorizo and cook through. Add shrimp, lightly salt, and cook, turning occasionally, until pink, about 5 minutes; transfer to a plate and set aside. When cooled, dice up chorizo.

Add paprika, tomatoes, garlic, peppers, and onions to pan and cook, stirring often, until onions are soft, about 6 minutes. Add saffron and broth, season with salt, and bring to a boil over high heat.

Sprinkle in rice, distribute evenly with a spoon, and cook, without stirring, until rice has absorbed most of the liquid, 10–12 minutes. (If your pan is larger than the burner, rotate it every two minutes so different parts are over the heat and the rice cooks evenly.)

Reduce heat to low, add reserved shrimp and chorizo. Cook, without stirring, until rice has absorbed the liquid and is al dente, 5–10 minutes. Remove pan from heat, cover with aluminum foil, and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.


Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup (with Homemade Beef Broth)

Winter has finally arrived in the City of Champion. It’s really cold today. -30 with the windchill. Ugh. So I decided to stay home and do what any sensible person would do – Make homemade soup. From scratch. No I really mean from scratch, stock and everything!

I had some leftover beef bones and steak that I decided to turn into a tasty beef stock for a homemade cream of mushroom soup. A very good way to spend a cold cold weekend.

I roasted the beef bones and leftover steak bits in the oven at 375 with some onions for about an hour.

Then I transferred the lot to a stock pot and let it simmer gently for about 3 and a half hours.

I made sure to get all of the tasty little beef bits left behind!

At the end of all the bubbly boiling, I skimmed off as much fat as I could, then put the pot in the fridge to cool.

In the mean time, I started on my mushroom soup base. Justin and I sliced and diced up all of the mushrooms and onion you see here. Oh and we can’t forget about the garlic…

I cooked down the onions for a bit.

Then added the mushrooms.

For the liquid, I used 2 cups of the tasty beef stock, added some dry white wine, and some half and half. There wasn’t much else to it!

I thickened it up with some cornstarch.

and served it up hot!

Jacquie’s Delicious Homemade Mushroom Soup with Homemade Beef Broth

(courtesy of Simply Recipes and Canadian Living)

For the stock, you will need:

a couple large beef bones

beef scraps

1 medium onion

Roast Bones, scraps and onions in oven at 375 for 1 hour. Transfer to a stock pot, making sure you get all of the little brown bits at the bottom of the pan. Cover all ingredients in pot by an inch or so of water. Simmer on low for 3-6 hours. Throughout, skim fat off surface of stock pot. Do not stir, as this will make it more difficult to skim fat. Once you are done boiling the stock, remove from burner and transfer to fridge to cool. Another layer of fat will form on the top of the stock. Remove that before freezing.

For the soup, you will need:

Two cups of your beautiful homemade beef broth.

1 tbsp butter

25-30 crimini mushrooms.

1 large purple onion

3 garlic gloves

1tsp Italian seasoning

1 tsp dried oregano

1 cup of dry white wine

2 cups half and half.

2 tbsp cornstarch

Dice onion, mushrooms and garlic. Cook with butter, oregano and Italian seasoning in a large pot. Once cooked down, add wine and broth and let simmer. Mix cornstarch with a small amount of warm water and add to the pot. Add half and half and bring back up to a simmer. Once thick, take off burner and let cool for a while. Serve hot, and enjoy!

Slowcooker Asian Chicken Wings

Good Morning All! Sorry I have been MIA lately. It’s quite the busy time post holidays. To make it up to you, I am featuring a tasty delicious meal that you can make in your crockpot, no less! And who doesn’t want a tasty crockpot meal when they are running around in the winter? Yea, I thought so…

For the chicken wing sauce, I used a blend of tasty Asian ingredients. Soy, hoisin, honey, ginger and garlic. There wasn’t much else to it.

I combined all the ingredients the night before, so that all I had to do in the morning was plop it all in the slowcooker!

I even marinated the chicken wings in the sauce over night. This made the wings fall-off-the-bone tender!

In the morning, I turned the crockpot on low and let it cook for 7 hrs.

And I came home to this delicious concoction.

I served them over Jasmine rice with a side salad. Deliciously tasty meal!

Jacquie’s Tasty Slow Cooker Chicken Wings

You will need:

1 cup of sodium reduced soy sauce

1 cup of water

1/2 cup of hoisin sauce

1/2 cup of honey

2 large garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp of ginger

1 pound  of chicken wings.

Combine all ingredients, and pour over chicken wings, leaving them to marinate overnight. In the morning, throw all ingredients into the slowcooker and cook on low for 7 hrs. Serve over your favorite rice.


Beer Can Chicken

Happy New Year everyone!

After a delicious week of eating rich, traditional foods, I decided it was time for something very very different. Beer Can Chicken. I’ve heard of beer can chicken before, but I’ve never had the guts to make it. So tonight was the night.

I bought a whole organic chicken from Superstore, and borrowed a can of Keith’s from my parents during their New Years Day family dinner.

I cut the top off the Keith’s, so that the beer could infuse better into the chicken.

I make a unique spice blend of Middle Eastern Seasoning, that my mom brought back from Egypt. I added some garlic and onion powder, and some seasoning salt. This was quite the good spice rub.

I rubbed the chicken with olive oil to start, then rubbed it down with the spice mix.

Then I carefully inserted the Beer can upright into the chicken, so it kind of looks like the chicken it sitting on it (can you see the can between it’s legs?)

Then I let it roast at 375 for about an hour. This made the house smell absolutely mouthwatering!

I let it stand for a bit before slicing it up and serving it with some tasty sides. Man, this chicken was a winner!

Jacquie’s Awesome Beer Can Chicken

You will need:

One beer can

One whole chicken

3 tablespoons of your favorite spice mix

2 tablespoons olive oil

Rub chicken with olive oil. Coat with spice mix. Cut top off beer can and drink until 1/4 is gone. Insert the beer can right side up into the chicken. Place in a big roasting pan and roast in the oven at 375 for 1 hour. Let rest on counter for about 15 minutes before removing the beer can (be careful! it’s still very hot!!). Slice up and thoroughly enjoy!