Crab and Lemon Aioli Bruschetta

My favorite new appetizer!! I love having crab in the summer, there is just something so light but meaty about it! Mixing the crab with the lemon aioli definitely makes this app what it is!

Crab and Lemon Aioli Bruschetta

crab and lemon aioli brushetta

Ingredients

Toasts:
1 ciabatta loaf, cut into 12 (1/2-inch thick) slices
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 clove garlic, peeled and halved
Crab:
8 ounces lump crabmeat
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Aioli:
1/3 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1 large lemon, zested
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

For the toasts: Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange the bread slices in a single layer on a heavy baking sheet. Drizzle both sides of the bread with the oil. Season with salt and bake until light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool for 1 minute, and then rub the toasts with the cut side of the garlic.

For the crab: In a small bowl, gently combine the crab, lemon juice, chives, and salt.

For the aioli: In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon zest, salt, and cayenne pepper.

Mix the crabmeat with the aioli mixture and place on top of the toasts.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/crab-and-lemon-bruschetta-recipe.html

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Spicy Cinnamon-Chocolate Brownies

These no-fuss chocolate brownies get a subtle kick of spice that brings this all-time favorite dessert to the next level.

Spicy Cinnamon-Chocolate Brownies

spicy cinnamon chocolate brownies

Ingredients

Vegetable oil cooking spray, for greasing pan
One 21-ounce box brownie mix, such as Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Directions

Position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch ceramic or glass baking dish with vegetable oil cooking spray. Line the dish with a 15-inch-square piece of parchment paper, allowing the excess paper to overhang the sides. Spray the parchment paper with vegetable oil cooking spray.

Blend together the brownie mix, eggs, vegetable oil, 1/4 cup water, cinnamon and cayenne pepper in a large bowl. Beat the mixture for 1 minute using an electric hand mixer on medium speed. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted about 1-inch from the edge of the baking dish comes out clean, 25 to 27 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool for 1 hour.

Lift the brownie layer from the pan, using the excess paper for handles. Run a thin spatula underneath the brownie layer to loosen it from the parchment paper. Cut into squares and serve.

Recipe source: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/spicy-cinnamon-chocolate-brownies-recipe.html

Chicken Tikka Masala {Crockpot}

I am not a huge fan of ethnic food but I crave chicken tikka masala all the time! When I found this crockpot recipe I was more than excited to try it! This is, by far, the best crockpot recipe I have made so far considering I got a crockpot as a wedding present back in October. I haven’t used my crockpot nearly enough as I should, but this recipe makes me want to search for more great crockpot recipes!

Remember: Spices marinating for hours on end intensifies the flavor so be careful when adding the cayenne.

You may think 2 tsp of cayenne isn’t that much, but combining it with the cumin, and the masala, and the cinnamon, the flavor gets intense. As much as my husband and I love spicy food, 2 tsp of cayenne was a little overbearing (which is why I adjusted the ingredients accordingly).

Chicken Tikka Masala

chicken tikka masala

Ingredients

  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins, or about 5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 3 lbs.) – cut into 1.5″ cubes
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 (29 oz.) can of tomato puree
  • 1½ cups plain yogurt
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. Garam masala
  • 1 tbsp. cumin
  • ½ tbsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. salt, or to taste
  • ¾ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 0-2 tsp. cayenne pepper (depending on your heat preference)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  • Chopped parsley or cilantro, for topping

Directions

  1. Place everything up to the bay leaves in a large bowl. With a spatula, stir to combine everything and make sure the chicken is coated well.
  2. Gently place the mixture in the insert of the crockpot and add the two bay leaves.
  3. Cover and cook for 8 hours on low (or 4 hours on high).
  4. When done, in a medium bowl, whisk together heavy cream and corn starch, then pour the mixture into the crockpot and gently stir. Let cook an additional 20 minutes to thicken up.
  5. Serve hot over a bed of white (or brown) rice, or as usual I put mine over couscous. I think a little thicker grain will be better with this though, like rice, to really soak up the great sauce.
  6. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

Recipe source: http://www.tablefortwoblog.com/2012/10/19/chicken-tikka-masala-crockpot

Spicy Orange Garlic Shrimp

There isn’t much of an intro needed for this recipe but let’s just say this took shrimp to a whole new level! And super easy too!

Spicy Orange Garlic Shrimp

orange shrimp

Ingredients

  • 24 pieces (26-30 Per Pound) Peeled and Deveined Shrimp
  • 2 cloves (to 4 Cloves) Garlic, minced
  • ¾ cups Orange Juice (Use a nice high quality orange juice)
  • ½ teaspoons Ground Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • 3 Tablespoons Salted Butter, Divided

Directions

If the shrimp you bought is frozen, thaw them by running them under cold water for about 5 minutes. Dry the shrimp by draining them on a paper towel or two.

Add the garlic to the orange juice. Measure out and add all of the spices to the orange juice as well.

In a large skillet over high heat melt 2 tablespoons butter. Once the butter has melted add in your shrimp. Cook them for about 30-60 seconds and begin flipping them over starting with the ones you placed in the pan first so they don’t get overdone. Cook for another 30-60 seconds. Remove the cooked shrimp from the pan, leaving the heat on high.

Once the butter and drippings begin to smoke ever so slightly add the spicy orange garlic mixture to the pan and give it a good stir. Add the last tablespoon of butter to the sauce and after a few minutes of cooking and occasional stirring your sauce should be slightly thicker. The sauce should reduce quite a bit as well to almost nothing.

Return the shrimp to the pan and give them a nice toss to coat them in the sauce. Allow an intermingling of souls to take place for just a few seconds and then it’s time for the fireworks.

I served my shrimp over a bed of brown rice, but for more protein quinoa will be just as tastey!

Recipe source: http://tastykitchen.com/recipes/main-courses/pastor-ryane28099s-spicy-orange-garlic-shrimp/

Honey Sesame Chicken

I got a crockpot as a wedding present and haven’t done much with it yet. However, I found this recipe for a honey sesame chicken and thought it would be a good start!

Crock Pot Honey Sesame Chicken

Honey Sesame Chicken

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Boneless/Skinless Chicken breasts
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 C honey
  • 1/2 C low sodium soy sauce
  • Approx. 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/3 C water
  • 3 scallions- chopped
  • sesame seeds
  • quinoa

Directions

  1. Lightly season chicken with pepper and place in crockpot
  2. Combine onion, garlic, honey, soy sauce, oil, and pepper over the chicken.
  3. Cook on low for 6 hours
  4. After about 4 hours I added in some water to the crock pot and after 6 just turned it to the “warm” setting
  5. Remove chicken and shred into bite-size pieces (here you can either set aside or put back into the sauce). You can shred the chicken with a fork, or I have seen it done in a kitchen aid too just keep the speed to semi-low.
  6. Prepare quinoa according to directions on package
  7. Serve quinoa onto plates, top with chicken and spoon sauce on top.
  8. Sprinkle sesame seeds and the chopped scallions over the top

Now as you might know by now, my husband likes things spicy. If you like it spicy I would add 1 tbsp of hot sauce or chili sauce into the crock pot so it absorbs in the whole dish. Or you can always taste the sauce before you serve it and add in your hot sauce then.

I  got this recipe on a fitness website so I knew it would be healthy. The author pairs this recipe with a workout routine so you can find the original workout and recipe here: http://fitandbusy.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/arms-and-crockpot-honey-sesame-chicken/