Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Grandkids Sleepover With Seafood

Our two nearest grandkids, Matthew and Sophia, are moving to Maryland in June and we had some things for their Dad, so we invited them down for a sleepover – one of Matthews favorite things to do. We had a meal planned for the adults, believing we could always fix the kids a PB&J sandwich, but surprisingly they liked pasta and Matthew liked shrimp, so we were good to go.

Bev had gotten a good deal on sea scallops the other day and we had shrimp in the freezer and fresh asparagus from the garden, so a meal was born. We started with salad using fresh lettuce, green onion, and radishes from the garden, then cooked the entrée.

Neighbor, Pat, was alone for the evening so she also joined us and since she and Eric are both cooks, I demonstrated the proper pan heating technique and like I had been, they were amazed as the scallops freely moved around the pan while developing the perfect crust.

After sautéing, the scallops were set aside and covered and I added ½ cup of white wine to deglaze the pan, followed by ½ cup of homemade shrimp stock, 1 stick of butter, the juice of two lemon wedges (three would have been fine) and about a teaspoon of garlic from the garlic press (more would have been fine).

When the butter melted, I added the asparagus and cooked for a few minutes then added the shrimp and cooked until pink. When I flipped the shrimp, I added the scallops back to the pan for a few minutes of warm up and to coat with the sauce.

I had added the pasta to salted boiling water when I started the scallops. When the shrimp were done, I removed the asparagus and seafood to a covered plate and transferred the pasta from the water to the skillet with a slotted spoon (ala Giada) – I wanted a little of the pasta water for thickener. After a toss to coat the pasta, I plated it, topped with parsley, green onion, and grated Parmesan, and got this.

It was very good and hit in the middle of everyone’s differing taste (garlic, lemon, shrimp doneness, etc) and the best part is I didn't use a recipe. Next time it will be capers in place of garlic to change it up a little.  One of my cooking goals has been to make seafood dishes that I’d serve to company and I now have a few that I’m comfortable with.

Sophia is picky about what she'll eat, but Matthew always knows what he wants for breakfast, so next morning, it was moist scrambled eggs, buttered toast, and chocolate milk - one of the benefits of a sleepover with Meme and Grandpop.

All photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.

One year ago: Sirloin & Bean Burrito



  1. That dish looks like a masterpiece. Nicely done Chef! When I happen to remember to heat the pan properly, I love it when the meat lifts when it reaches that perfect brownness. Nice photo and beautiful meal.

  2. Wow. That is Spring on a plate. Very artistic display. I am still dealing with my envy that you grow your own asparagus. Delicious.

    Happy Spring to you!


  3. I love seafood and pasta...it's like heaven on a plate! Yours looks like it turned out perfectly! Lucky grandkids!!!! :)

  4. Sounds like a good time with the grands, Larry. Glad they are 'learning' to eat some of Grandpop's delicious food....

    Have a great Tuesday.

  5. Looks like a perfect dinner! Nice that the kids could stop by for a visit before they move a little farther away.

  6. Gorgeous! And what fun to feed the grandkids. Looks like your photography is coming right along, Larry.

  7. Larry, that is beautiful dish and I can taste it. PS: just about to pick our first asparagus. :)

  8. With the detail and techniques you used here, it just blows my mind to remember that just two years ago, you told me you didn't vary from recipes much. Now look at you free forming your own recipes and great ones at that. So much fun isn't it?


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