Archive for March, 2010

Vegetarian Moussaka

Let me just say that we are a family of carnivores… meat eaters… whatever… I’m just saying …

However, once in a while I come across something veggy that sounds interesting. So the questions always are “Will it taste good?” and “Will it fill my husband up?” The answer for this recipe is YES!!!

Once again I was sucked in by the marketing. The picture of this recipe was so yummy looking! It was tasty as is although I did add a bit more cheese because cheese makes everything better! *Note my pictures are not as pretty as the cookbook! 🙂

Here is the recipe:

Vegetarian Moussaka

Source: Great Taste Low Fat, One -Pot Meals by Time Life Books

Serves 4


  • 1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, defatted
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 eggplants (@ 8 oz each), cut lengthwise into 1/4″ thick slices
  • 8 oz orzo
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 1/2 cups low fat milk
  • 3 oz part skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (@ 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 oz can no-salt-added tomato sauce

How to pull it all together:

  • Preheat oven to 425°. Spray 2 baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray.  In a large bowl, combine the broth and vinegar. Add the eggplant, tossing to coat. 
  • Arrange the eggplant slices on the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, or until soft.
  • Meanwhile (at the Batcave lol) in a large pot of boiling water, cook the orzo until just tender, drain well and set aside
  • In a large saucepan, heat the oil until hot but not smoking over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until onion is softened, @ 7 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly until light golden, @ 4 minutes.
  • Gradually whisk in the milk and cook, whisking frequently, until the mixture is slightly thickened, @ 4 minutes longer.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the orzo, all but 2 tablespoons of the mozzarella, the oregano, rosemary, salt and pepper
  • Spray a 9×9 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Line 2 sides of the dish with eggplant slices, leaving a 2 inch overhang. Spoon the orzo mixture over the eggplant, fold the eggplant ends over the mixture, and pour the tomato sauce on top. Bake for 20 minutes, or until moussaka is piping hot. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons mozzarella on top and bake 2 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

Fat:9 grams

Calories: 423

Sat Fat: 3.2

Carb: 68grams

Protein: 19g

Cholesterol: 16 mg

Sodium: 522 mg

**You can unhealthify this recipe and maybe make it more flavorful. You know what to do! 🙂

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Shame on me… I had the pleasure of choosing one of February’s recipes and I am soooo far behind! In my defense, I did have an oven incident which returned me to being “Queen of Microwave Cooking” for about 2 weeks….. more on that later when I post about Indonesian Chicken.

So what to say about this Baked Shrimp Scampi recipe except that it’s freaking awesome!! I’ve actually made it twice now, and will be making it again tonight. It is so easy to make and tastes so absolutely delish!  Shrimp scampi has always been one of my family’s favorite meals ever since I was a kid! My dad had some creative ways to making it (including a microwave version which sounds gross but is actually really yummy!) This is by far the best one I’ve come across, and it’s better than in the restaurants because you can choose to use the monster size shrimp and not be limited to just 4-5 measly little ones on your plate for $25+.

I served this a few different ways, once with rice and once over egg noodles. Both times, I made broccoli as a side dish. Just steaming it worked well because you can then just toss it into the scampi sauce! A few changes I made to the recipe was that I didn’t use the wine and I omitted the egg yolk. Wine doesn’t seem to last long in our house and every time I go to make this recipe I never seem to have any lol! And… egg tends to skeeve me out, so if I don’t think it’s needed I skip it.  I subbed lemon juice for the wine and it was great. Another time I didn’t have lemons, but I did have lime so I used lime for all the lemon and cilantro for the parsley… very yummy twist on the recipe!

It was so good, even my almost 4 year old little chicky ate it! She’s becoming very adventuresome lately with her food choices even branching out to her new favorite “sushi”.. or as she pronounces it “soooshi”… more on that in a later post!

Baked Shrimp Scampi

Source: Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, by Ina Garten

Serves 6


  • 2 pounds (12 to 15 per pound) shrimp in the shell
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 teaspoons minced garlic (4 cloves)
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 extra-large egg yolk
  • 2/3 cup panko (Japanese dried bread flakes)
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

How to pull it all together:

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Peel, devein, and butterfly the shrimp, leaving the tails on. Place the shrimp in a mixing bowl and toss gently with the olive oil, wine, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Allow to sit at room temperature while you make the butter and garlic mixture.
  • In a small bowl, mash the softened butter with the garlic, shallots, parsley, rosemary, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, lemon juice, egg yolk, panko, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper until combined.
  • Starting from the outer edge of a 14-inch oval gratin dish, arrange the shrimp in a single layer cut side down with the tails curling up and towards the center of the dish. Pour the remaining marinade over the shrimp. Spread the butter mixture evenly over the shrimp. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until hot and bubbly. If you like the top browned, place under a broiler for 1 minute. Serve with lemon wedges.

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