Cheryl’s Cuisine: March 2022

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

Winter holidays are gone, and in the blink of an eye, it’s Lent.  

Many people, including myself and my husband, still adhere to “meatless” Fridays during the weeks prior to Easter.  I’m always looking for new recipes as the “same old, same old” dishes can become boring.  What’s on your menu for these Fridays? Pizza? Pasta? Potato pancakes? Fish? Shellfish? Grilled cheese?  

Growing up when the Catholic Church didn’t allow meat on any Fridays all year, our mother fixed tuna salad. To this day, I strongly dislike tuna salad.

So here are some easy, special dishes to add to your “meatless Friday” repertoire:

Shrimp Sensation

4 lbs. jumbo (16-20), shelled
4 oz. butter, melted
1 cup fresh bread crumbs

Split shrimp down middle, and arrange on a baking tray.  Brush with butter and sprinkle with bread crumbs.  Broil 5 minutes or until done.  Arrange on a platter and pour sauce over.

Sauce:
4 scallions
2 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup lemon juice
Salt, to taste
3/4 cup cream sherry
2 sticks butter
3/4 cup Dijon mustard

Chop scallions finely and press garlic.  Add Worcestershire, lemon juice, salt and sherry.  Mix butter with mustard until soft and smooth.  Add to rest of sauce.  Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Serves 8.

***

Crab Melt

1 lb. crabmeat
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup diced red onion
4 hard-boiled eggs, diced
1/2 tsp. Old Bay Seasoning
1/4 tsp. dill weed
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
4 English muffins
8 slices tomato
8 slices Cheddar cheese

Combine first 8 ingredients in a medium bowl.  Separate muffins.  Top each muffin half with 1 slice of tomato, crab mixture, and 1 slice of Cheddar.  Broil in oven just until cheese melts.  Serves 4.

***

Scrumptious Bay Scallops

3/4 bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. oil
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 1/2 medium onions, chopped
6 Tbsp. flour
1 cup milk
1/2 cup white wine
4 oz. Cheddar cheese, sliced
1 lb. bay scallops

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare topping by combining bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese in a small bowl.  Melt butter and oil in medium saucepan.  Saute’ celery and onions. Blend in flour to make a paste; cook one full minute over medium heat.  Gradually add milk, stirring after each addition.  Stir wine into sauce.  Add cheese and let it melt into sauce, stirring frequently.  Fold in scallops.  Pour into greased 2-quart casserole dish.  Sprinkle on topping.  Bake for 20-30 minutes until bubbly.  Serve over noodles or rice.  Serves 5.

***

Dijon Fish Filet

8 oz. fresh fish fillet such as flounder or cod
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup sour cream
Cracked pepper

Rinse fish and pat dry.  Coat baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Put fish in pan.  Mix lemon juice, mustard and Worcestershire and spread on fish.  Cover with sour cream.  Sprinkle with cracked pepper.  Bake for 20 minutes at 350  degrees.  Serve immediately.  Serves 2.

***

Pasta with Tomato-Artichoke Sauce

1/3 cup olive oil
1 small red onion, chopped
2-6 oz. jars marinated artichoke hearts, drained
1-28 oz. can Italian plum tomatoes
1 Tbsp. capers, chopped
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
12 oz. angel hair pasta, cooked
1/2 cup Parmesan, freshly grated

Heat olive oil in large pan over medium heat.  Add onion and saute’ 5 minutes or until softened.  Add artichokes to onions and cook 3 minutes.  Add tomatoes and crush in pan so they are chunked.  Add capers and season with salt and pepper.  Cook briskly over medium heat about 10 minutes.  Toss with pasta and add cheese.  Serves 4-6.

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Mushrooms Over Puff Pastry Shells

2 lbs. assorted mushrooms
2 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 red pepper chopped finely
1 small onion, diced
3-4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 cup amaretto
1 pkg. frozen puff pastry shells, baked according to package directions

Saute’ onions, pepper and garlic until translucent.  Add mushrooms, sliced, and continue to saute’.  Add Worcestershire sauce, oregano, thyme and continue cooking for 2 more minutes. Next, add amaretto and simmer for 5 minutes.  Salt and pepper, to taste.  Serve over baked puff pastry shells.

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