Tuesday, March 27, 2012

No tengo ganas...but we need to eat something!

Happy Tuesday, Readers!

Last week was famazing! The weather was perfection. Bright, sunny and in the 80s. We slept with the windows open every night! Sitting here now, in my sweatpants, long sleeved t-shirt and fleece sweater, I have to ask myself if it was just a dream. It started raining this weekend and with that, the temps started to drop again to "normal" March standards.  I am not pleased.

I was feeling so stubborn about it that on Monday I went to school in skinny jeans and my croc flats. I wore long sleeves and Mi Gringito's Red Sox jacket, pero from the waist down, I was in the tropics. I regretted the fashion statement as I walked across campus to get to one of my classes.  Have you ever had cold wind hit you so hard that your skin and bones hurt? Yep...that was good 'ol Mother Nature letting me know who was boss. I've been bundled up ever since.

Not the right apparel for 40 degree weather

As I have mentioned before, I've been making bean stews every week since it was cold and it felt good to have that warm yumminess just sit in your tummy. But, since it was sweltering when I went to do groceries last week, I didn't even glance at the beans, let alone anything else that might go well in a stew.  We went out for supper last night with a great friend, but we can't do that every night -- Mi Gringito certainly is not Mr. Moneybags and I fear I could gain back all the weight I've lost so far!
He might look like this if he grew out his mustache...

So what is a girl to do? I really didn't have any ganas to put some decent clothing on and drive to the grocery store to pick anything up and everything else was frozen. I'm cool with just eating some yogurt or cottage cheese, but Mi Gringito needs some sort of sustenance. I'm pretty good at making due with what I have, so I was sure I could come up with something.  I even treated it like if I was on Chopped and I had a mystery box. I opened the freezer and just stared in there until I felt little icicles forming on my nostrils. In the back of the freezer, almost caked in ice was a bag of pre-cooked mini-shrimp I bought at the beginning of Lent, long forgotten since I've been sticking to veggie burgers on Fridays. One of my favorite Cuban dishes is Camarones Enchilados, so I figured that I could try to make my own version. My next stop was the pantry in hopes that I would find the rest of the ingredients. Thankfully, I usually keep a stash of my favorite go-to's just in case I'm ever at one of these predicaments.  I made the sign of the cross, and hoped that mixing everything I had would make a meal fit for my darling and loving husband.

Camarones Enchilados Para Los Vagos
1 pkg Frozen Pre-cooked Shrimp (any size will do, I just had mini's in my freezer)
1 6oz can Tomato Paste
1 Tbsp. Minced Garlic
1 pkg. Goya Seasoning
Sriracha Sauce (to taste)
1/4C White cooking wine
1 Tbsp Olive Oil


  • Place the frozen shrimp in a colander and run under water in your sink until they are defrosted. This usually takes a few minutes. If your shrimp have tails, remove them at this stage.
  • In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Add the minced garlic and packet of Goya seasoning. Stir mixture for about a minute.
  • Add the shrimp and mix well, making sure the shrimp gets coated with the seasoned garlic mixture. (They should look neon orange).
  • Add the cooking wine, tomato paste and sriracha sauce*.
  • Mix all ingredients well, lower heat and let simmer for a few minutes.

*A little goes a long way so you might want to start with about a teaspoon and add more if you want more heat.

I usually serve this on top of a bed of rice.  The sauce is nice and thick so it stick to the rice perfectly.  Mi Gringito practically licked his plate clean, so I guess I did something right despite being una vaga! I thought it tasted just like the one I used to order at El Rinconcito, but I might just be nostalgic at this stage! Whatever the case, both of us ended up pretty happy with the end result!

What are some recipes you've come up with just by looking in your pantry?

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