Thursday, May 24, 2012

Simple Seafood & Veggie Paella Recipe!

Here's my recipe for a quick and simple seafood and veggie paella!  It's an easy "one-pot" meal that is full of flavor with little cleaning necessary.  The ingredients can be found at any major grocery store or farmers market.  You may even have them in your cabinet. Enjoy.

1tsp of Hungarian paprika (or smoked paprika)
1 tsp of ground coriander
2 tsp of tumeric
1 tsp of chili powder
2 tsp of cumin
2 tsp of coarse sea salt
2 tsp of dried oregano 
2tsp of Tabasco style pepper sauce (optional)
*above ingredients can be substituted with 2-3 tsp of Spanish-style seasoning mix from the store. 

2 garlic cloves (crushed, chopped, or minced)
1 cup of uncooked Jasmine rice
1/2 medium green pepper, coarsely chopped
1/2 large white onion, coarsely chopped
1 3/4 cups of water for cooking
3-5 tbsp of olive oil (less if adding any form of meat or fatty poultry)

Seafood & Veggies
12 oz Marinated Salmon (filet) (use your favorite marinade 1 hour before cooking, or overnight)
1 lb of Frozen Medium Shrimp (Thawed, Cooked, peeled and deveined )
1 zucchini, sliced thin
2 medium tomatoes coarsely chopped (substitution: 14oz can of diced tomatoes, drained)
1 cup of store bought shredded carrots
1/2 cup of green peas (cooked or canned)


Heat 3-4 tbsp (less if adding any form of meat or fatty poultry) of olive oil in a large skillet.  Test with one drop of water from finger tips, if the water makes the oil splat or pop, add drained marinated salmon and sear (almost fry the outsides until slightly browned.  Use spatula to break seared salmon into large chunks.  Add drained shrimp, to the pan with the salmon, tossing it around until lightly cooked.  Add seasonings and tomatoes.  Toss all ingredients together and cover for 1-2 minutes until the tomatoes begin to juice slightly. Uncover skillet and add water, bringing it to a boil add rice and stir for 1 minute, bringing it to a boil.  Toss in zucchini, peas and carrots, quickly.  Reduce to a simmer, cover tightly and cook for 12-14 minutes.  Turn off, DO NOT UNCOVER, allowing paella to stand for 5-10 minutes.  Serve hot with fresh squeezed lime or chopped cilantro. Braggggggg!

For any questions or suggestions, please feel free to post below.  -Jennifer

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Super Shopping! Save Money and the Planet at Your Next Trip to the Grocery Store.

The constant headlines reminding us of our need to "save the planet" can be overwhelming, causing us to want to block it all out of our minds. In most cases, just thinking about how we can change things leaves us stumped for answers, we end up doing little or nothing. But, by making a few small changes in the way we shop for groceries, we can make a change in our "corner of the world."

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as of 2009, our country generates approximately 1.4 billion pounds of solid waste every day. That's 5 pounds of paper products, plastics, metals, and other disposables for each person, daily; and that average person's waste adds up to 65 tons.  We believe that we are "getting rid" of  what we don't need, but that isn't really the case. Out of all of our solid waste, only half of what gets tossed actually gets broken down or recycled, the other half heads to local landfills.
The clincher is that of that 1.4 billion pounds of solid waste, uneaten food accounts for nearly 14 percent of that waste.  Of that 34 million tons of uneaten food, less than 3 percent of it actually gets recycled.  Since 2010, wasted food is now the largest form of solid waste reaching our landfills- even more than paper, which gets recycled more often. Source: U.S. EPA (2010)     
Here's where you come in...
By simply purchasing only the food you realistically will eat, you will save dollars at the register and by not throwing away money by tossing uneaten food! The average family of 4 loses nearly $600 annually on spoiled food, not including uneaten food on plates! U.S. News & World Report offer the following tips for saving your money and your planet one meal at a time:
  1. Make a list of what you need and stick to it. This requires basic meal planning for the next few days or for the week.
  2. Don't shop while hungry. Everything starts to look tasty, and you are likely not going to be able to consume all that you purchase.
  3. Be cautious about buying in bulk. Only stockpile what you know can be used before it expires.
  4. Organize your fridge. This will help you be aware of what you already do have so that you won't repurchase or forget to use up what you have.
  5. Get creative with your leftovers. Stay tuned for my upcoming topic which will give tips on reinventing your leftovers to save time and money.