Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Easy / Healthy Make Ahead Dinner - Shrimp & Pasta!

Thank you so much for your comments about St. Croix! I am STILL pumped about the wonderful thoughts from all of you and I appreciate it so much!! Thanks!!
Many of those that know me well, know that one of my tricks is making food on the weekends so that when the week rolls around, I'm not rushing home from a workout at 7pm and attempting to make something that is both good for me, and can be prepared quickly. There are meals like that out there, but you have to be really on your game, and most require some advanced prep (like chopping, washing etc.). However, I've come to love this dish of shrimp in a homemade vodka type sauce with tomatoes, spinach and other great nutritional packed items over pasta. Give it a try some weekend and eat it for at least three days that week!! It's wonderful, even after you heat it up the second or third time. In addition, you can freeze it for later if you don't want to eat it all at once!

First, purchase the peeled, cooked, frozen, de-veined shrimp you see above in the bag. I use the entire 1 lb bag so that I have leftovers.
Then throw the frozen shrimp in a strainer, and run some semi-hot water over them to thaw them slightly. Pat dry with a paper towel and remove the tails.
Chop about half an onion into small diced pieces.
Purchase two cans (14.5oz each) and open.
I used minced garlic in a jar because it's already ready to go!
I also save time by purchasing pre-sliced and washed mushrooms.
When I peel the tails off the shrimp I just put them in a paper towel and then scoop them up to put in the trash!
Add the diced onions and garlic to a skillet on medium heat with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Add the shrimp once the onions are clear or slightly yellow.
Then add the pre-cut mushrooms to the mix and saute until mushrooms are softer (approx. 5 minutes).
Here's where the two cans of diced tomatoes come in! Just dump on top (with all the juice and everything) of the vegetable mixture and stir.
Once mixed together, I know it sounds crazy, but add approximately 2 table spoons of cream cheese (lite preferred) and allow it to get warm and dissolve in the pan. You may have to use a fork to break it up and get it to mix in. It will turn the sauce slightly pink. Simmer for 10 minutes and with about 2 minutes to go, add pre-washed spinach until it wilts slightly.
Lastly, add about a tablespoon of white all purpose flour to thicken the sauce.
Finally, serve over pasta and add desired spices like pepper/Italian seasoning or a little Parmesan cheese to taste. I pair it with a spinach salad (and wine, no surprise there!) for a wonderful meal!

I did put it into a recipe analyzer, and I'll add that tomorrow. I've got to get to the track to do a speed workout! Night everyone!

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