Quick Oven (Pinterest) Shrimp

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: Appetizers, January 2014, Seafood Dishes


I found this recipe on Pinterest (and of course also all over Facebook) so I thought i’d give it a try because as we all know I am literally a shrimp Ho.

One of my close friends at work, Joy, always tells me I should have my cholesterol checked….routinely, due to the amount of shrimp I ingest regularly.

I have been known to eat an entire shrimp ring in one sitting. More then once a week. Don’t judge me. lol. At least it is healthy and has protein. I’m not sitting down 2-3 times a week with a jumbo bag of Doritos.

Honestly its my homemade cocktail sauce. The shrimp makes it taste better…believe me…i’ve tried eating it with a spoon but scooping it up with a juicy little shrimpy is better.

For the cocktail sauce you’ll need:

2 cups of ketchup

1/4 cup prepared Horseradish

1/2 tsp lemon juice

dash of Worcestershire sauce


Mix together. Refrigerate.


For the shrimp you’ll need:

1 lb of shrimp (about 1 bag of frozen shrimp, 25-30 pieces)

sliced lemon (enough to layer at the bottom of the pan)

1/4 cup of butter (splurge…use the real stuff)

2 Tbsps of chopped garlic

1 tsp Italian seasoning (I have never been able to find this in my local grocery stores so about a year ago I made my own. In a food processor add 2 Tbsps of the following dried spices: basil, oregano, rosemary, marjoram, cilantro, thyme, savory and red pepper flakes. Pulse together.)

Now this is all the recipe calls for…I added 1 Tbsp of chopped pickled hot peppers. I couldn’t help myself.




Here are the difficult instructions.

Preheat oven to 350.

Place the butter on a cookie sheet (or baking stone) and melt in the oven for 1-2 minutes.

Layer the lemon slices in the butter.

Add garlic (and hot peppers).




Lay the shrimp on top. Do not overlap. Move them around a little to get the goop on the shrimp.

Sprinkle with Italian spices. I also added fresh ground sea salt and pepper.




Bake for 15 minutes.








I guess you could serve this over rice or noodles. I ate them right off the pan. ๐Ÿ™‚




Love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick

little LITTLE brown chicken

An Exercise in Decadence…Lobster Mac & Cheese

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: Main Course, Seafood Dishes, September 2012


The Superstore had live lobster on sale for $5 a pound a few weeks ago…I got 4 lovely ladies for a little under $20. After eating one fresh out of the shell with butter and using another a lobster rolls I had hit a brick wall. What to do with the other 2?? I know I could freeze them for a later time but why not get a little adventurous?

I am fairly certain I had heard of Lobster Mac & Cheese on one of the multitude of cooking shows I watch. If you know me you know that its either HGTV or Food Network around here almost 24/7. Unless Big Brother is on….or Criminal Minds….or Sons of Anarchy. Anyway, the point is I watch a lot of cooking shows (and apparently other tv shows!). I googled for a recipe but since I was in my pjs and super lazy I had to do quite a few substitutions. Almost so many that it really cannot be considered “following a recipe”. I kinda made it up as I went along using the recipe(s) I found as more like guidelines then actual recipes per se.


So for my bastardized version….

What you will need is:



meat of two 1 to 1 1/2 lb lobsters, in largish bite sized pieces

3-4 cups of cooked elbow macaroni, drained and cooled

1 small diced onion

1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded (I like old but you can use your preference…the recipe called for Gouda. I have never even EATEN Gouda cheese let alone have any in my fridge!)

2 Tbsps Cheez Whiz (recipe called for Velveeta…close enough)

1/2 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup Chicken stock (the recipe called for dry white wine….yeah, none of that around here)

3 heaping Tbsps flour

salt and pepper

2 Tbsps + 2 Tbsps butter

1 cup heavy cream (whipping cream works!)

bread crumbs

garlic powder




Preheat over to 375 degrees.

In a small saucepan on medium heat, warm cream.

In a separate medium saucepan melt 2 Tbsps butter over medium heat and saute the onions about 2 minutes.



Add chicken stock and allow to warm up for a minute or two.

Add the flour and whisk (it will make a paste).




Add the warm cream. Stir until thickened. Add salt and pepper (I used about 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper).



Remove from heat and add the cheeses.





Stir until combined and melted. Add the lobster and continue stirring for a minute.



Add noodles and mix well.





Place mixture in a greased 9×9 Pyrex pan.



In a separate bowl add 1 cup bread crumbs (I like Panko Japanese bread crumbs as they are super crunchy), 2 Tbsps melted butter (microwave 20 seconds) and a pinch of garlic powder. Mix together.



Top the Mac & Cheese with it.



Bake for 30-35 minutes until cheese is bubbling. I turned the broiler on high after 35 minutes in the oven and just lightly browned the top for 1-2 minutes.



Serve immediately. Sprinkle with a little chopped or dried parsley.



This is SUPER rich and a small bowl is more then enough.


love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick


Kitchen Bitch Episode 2 – The Anti Valentines Day Bitch

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: Appetizers, Desserts, February 2012, Main Course, Seafood Dishes



My little group and I decided the best way to celebrate the HORROR that is Valentines Day, aka ‘Single Awareness Day’, would be together, with lots of great food, music and alcohol. I don’t really mind V Day all that much other than all the hearts and pink stuff shoved in our faces by retail establishments that tell us if we don’t have a Valentine we are losers. To me its just another day that I have chosen to be alone. I am alone 364 other days of the year so why is the anniversary of the day that St Valentine had his head chopped off in 270 AD going to be any different? YAY….a beheading….here have a Hallmark card and some flowers to celebrate! ???? My highly intelligent and modern mind cannot grasp this concept. ๐Ÿ™‚


So at the last Kitchen Bitch I took it upon myself to snap up February 14th as MY turn to host the next installment. I am so glad that I did. It gave me some fresh, fun eyes to view all the decorations that were up and around every where. Every time I would see a little cupid, I would picture him hanging in my house….decapitated, just like poor St Valentine. I thought it was a fitting tribute…not sadistic.

I would see a shiny, red heart and pictured it ripped down the center…depicting a ‘Broken Heart’.

I had purchased myself some flowers last week (which I do very frequently) and thought once they were wilted and dead they would make a fabulous centerpiece for the table.

I bought a bunch of ‘Love Animals’ clutching hearts dearly to their busoms…and hung them from nooses throughout the house.


Some may find this bitter and sad. It made me IMMENSELY happy. I don’t feel bitter at all. I do not want a relationship. I love my life just as it is. That is NOT to say that I do not get lonely from time to time…I am human…not Borg…but I do HONESTLY love my life just as it it. If a wonderful, generous, caring, loving, handsome, well-blessed man presented himself to me I would recognize and give him a chance but I am not actively dating or out looking. I would literally need Baby Jesus to drop him in my lap for me to notice. Please Baby Jesus….drop a rich, well endowed man into my lap. ๐Ÿ˜‰

What I decided on for the menu was “Bad Date Foods”. Lots of garlic and spice. Messy foods. For an appetizer I found a recipe online for ‘Conceited Mushrooms’ (because they are full of themselves…..HAAAHAAAHAA). Of course, I tweaked it. I can’t help it.

For the Conceited Mushrooms you will need:

2 dozen button mushrooms

1/4 cup flavored bread crumbs, I used Italian bread crumbs from Progresso

1 tsp garlic, minced

1/4 cup onion, diced fine

salt and pepper to taste

2 Tbsps tomato juice *my addition

4 slices cooked bacon, diced *my addition (cause I even have a T-shirt that says “everything is better with bacon”)

a sprinkle of crushed, red chili flakes *my addition

2 Tbsps fresh grated Parmesan cheese

1 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley *my addition


First step is to have nice clean mushrooms.

Then separate the stem from the cap.


Take half of the stems and chop very fine. This is what makes the mushrooms full of themselves…we are going to add the stems BACK into the cap. Get it? Huh? ๐Ÿ˜€

Dice your onion.

diced onion

Add some butter or margarine to a small pan and saute the onions and mushroom stems until the onion softens. Add the garlic and sprinkle of chili flakes.

sauteed onion mushroom garlic chili flakes

Add sauteed veg to a bowl.

sauteed veg

Add the bread crumbs…

bread crumbs

…diced bacon…

…the Parmesan cheese…

parmesan cheese

…and the parsley. I tasted the mixture at this point. It was missing an acidic component so I had some tomato juice in the fridge and added a couple of tablespoons. It was PERFECT.

filling for Conceited Mushrooms

I found the button cap had to be modified a little. I took a paring knife and shaved a little around the edge to create a larger opening to restuff. I also sliced a small bit off the bottom to make it more flattened and stable.

Spoon the mixture back into the cap.

conceited mushrooms

Sprinkle a little Parmesan on top and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.

stuffed mushrooms conceited mushrooms


For the main course I served Super garlicy, spicy shrimp pasta. I have blogged this recipe before (see ‘Spicy Shrimp pasta’ December 2011). I added a side of Roasted Garlic Cheesy bread. Simple french baguette, halved, with garlic butter and roasted garlic mash (lop off the top of a garlic bulb, douse with olive oil, wrap in tin foil, bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes). Add mozza cheese and broil for 5 minutes. Watch carefully so it doesn’t burn.


This dish would be considered a “bad date food” on 2 fronts! Uber garlic breath and a wonderful, slurpy, pasta slinging mess! Love it. Me and my girls didn’t care!!

garlicy spicy shrimp paste


For dessert I made Sex-in-a-pan. I had never made (or ate) this before but I figured that just because we are single doesn’t mean we can’t have sex on Valentine’s Day….it would just have to be in a pan. And not in any kinky way. Again….I modified the recipe slightly.

What you will need (for my bastardized version):

1 package instant chocolate pudding

1 package instant vanilla pudding

(milk to make the pudding…4 cups)

1 container Cool Whip, thawed

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1/2 cup melted margarine

1 8oz block of cream cheese, softened

1 cup icing sugar

milk chocolate for garnish

butterscotch ganache (1 cup of heavy cream brought to a simmer on stovetop, remove from heat and one package Chipits butterscotch chips stirred in until melted. Allow to cool completely)


Mix together the graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. The actual recipe called for 1 cup of chopped pecans but since I am allergic to nuts (take that however you want to! lol) I left them out. Press into the bottom of a 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Make sure it doesn’t burn. Mine cooked for 16 minutes and was perfect. Allow to cool completely.

graham cracker crust

While the crust cools, make your puddings as per the directions on the box. These also have to set before continuing.

chocolate pudding

vanilla pudding


In another bowl, mix the cream cheese and the icing sugar.

cream cheese icing sugar

cream cheese mixture


Fold in 1 cup of Cool Whip.

cream cheese mixture with cool whip


Once the crust is completely cooled, add the cream cheese mixture.


Drizzle with butterscotch ganache.

butterscotch ganache


Top with chocolate pudding and some shaved or chopped chocolate.

chocolate layer


Add the vanilla pudding layer and top with the remaining Cool Whip.

vanilla and whip cream layer


Garnish with more drizzled ganache, shaved and chopped chocolate. To shave chocolate just drag a sharp knife across the chocolate bar. Chop what is left.


Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.

sex in a pan


To top off the evening we also created a delicious libation. It started with Amandas idea to mix Peach Schnapps with grapefruit juice (the result of leftover Schnapps from the Belinis at her party…and whatever was sitting in her fridge. Thank GOD she didn’t have beet juice in there!!!) I never got an exact recipe from her so I took that idea and ran with it.

This poor drink has an identity crisis. At first Amanda wanted to call it a ‘Zipless F#$k’ since searching drink names and realizing ‘A One Night Stand’ was taken. This was her idea of a synonym. Since my mommy reads my blog (on occasion) and she would be disappointed in me for using THE BIG CURSE WORD…I nixxed that idea. MY idea of a synonym would be to call it a ‘Colin Farrell’. In my opinion, Mr Farrell looks like a dirty bird that would throw you over the back of a couch, ravage you and then leave you panting…wanting more…as he nonchalantly left the premises. Read: One Night Stand. I could be wrong about this. He could be a really sweet guy…maybe this is my fantasy version of the man! Amanda has since been calling is a ‘Saucy Monkey’. After a few drinks we were easily calling it ‘Colin Farrells Saucy Monkey’ ๐Ÿ˜‰

What you will need is:

2oz Vodka

4oz Peach Schnapps

2 cups Ocean spray Ruby Red Grapefruit juice

3oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice

2 Tbsps thawed grapefruit juice concentrate (not mixed with water…straight from the can)

1 squirt Real lemon juice

1 tsp grenadine

grapefruit zest for garnish

grapefruit drink crystals mixed with super fine sugar, to rim the glass.


I started by using the leftover, squeezed carcass of grapefruit to moisten the rim of the glass then coated it with the crystal and sugar mixture. SOOOOOOO fancy!

Then in a cocktail shaker I mixed all the ingredients except the grenadine and garnish. Shake (not stirred ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) and pour into a martini or margarita glass. Drizzle in the grenadine and top with garnish. YUM YUM YUM!!! I drank these all afternoon. Of course just to get the measurements correct!

vodka peach schnapps grapefruit juice Colin Farrell



I think the 2nd installment of the Kitchen Bitch club was very successful and FUN! The ladies that attended got to take home a soundtrack with such lovely romantic classics as “These Boots are Made for Walking”, “Whats Love Got to Do With It”, “Love Stinks”, “I Never Really Loved You Anyway” and “I Don’t Need a Man”. Amanda made little Valentines boxes full of chocolates, cinnamon hearts and a little something extra for me. THANKS Amanda!!! I appreciate it!

Thank you to the girls that made it…Amanda and Jenn!! Without you Valentines Day would have sucked…again. I think this may have to be a yearly event at my house. As I take down the decorations and pack them away, I am filled with OTHER great decoration and food ideas for next year. ‘Colin Farrell’ will be there for sure!!



love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick






Kitchen Bitch Episode 1

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: Appetizers, February 2012, Main Course, Seafood Dishes, Soups


Three of us ladies decided to start a little club. A club where we can get out of our house (most of the time), enjoy each others company and some fab food, possibly some entertainment and also to rave and rant about whatever is on our mind or contaminating our souls from the inside out. There have been others invited but for the first installment (Episode 1) there were only the 3 of us. We shall call ourselves the “Founders of the Bitch Revolution” or the “Fab 3”.

We had the first “meeting” at Amandas house (aka. The Girl with Blue Balls of the Soul www.blueballsofthesoul.com).

Our Classy LunchLady photo! (don’t worry…this was staged and the cigarette didn’t even come anywhere close to the food! ;))

Classy Lunch Lady

Amanda had decided to make pseudo Angels on Horseback, Lobster Bisque, Belinis and Cherry Cheesecake. Kind of a retro, throwback, 50s/60s dinner party.

So first course started with the Angels on Horseback. Apparently “authentic” AOH are made with oysters wrapped in bacon. I am SOOOO happy she made pseudo ones. I am NOT an oyster fan. What Amanda made instead were these…

Angels on Horseback

What she did was pound out slices of Wonderbread and cut off the crusts. She spread a thin coating of sweetened condensed milk, Frenchs mustard, a dash of Worcestershire and a sprinkle of grated cheddar cheese and then wrapped it up in bacon. She then placed it in a 400 degree oven until done (about 15 minutes).

These were DE-Licious! I could not stop eating them and have been craving them ever since.


Second course was the Lobster Bisque. This was an impressive undertaking. I was seriously blown away. Amanda is a foodie like me. A lot of the fun in cooking for me is the adventure along the way…this was quite an adventure, a lot of steps to do this right. She got the recipe from Tyler Florence on FoodNetwork.com and she MOSTLY followed directions. ๐Ÿ™‚

This is the exact recipe as found on FoodNetwork.com:




Dispatch the lobsters by plunging a sharp knife directly behind its head.

Cut the lobster in half lengthwise; make sure to collect the juices that will run out. Remove the claws and tail pieces and set aside. Remove the head sac and liver and discard them; cut the body into pieces. Alternately, you can have your fishmonger do this.


Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium heat and melt 3 tablespoons butter in it. Add the chopped lobster bodies and heads and their juices, the leeks, 1 onion, celery, carrots, 1/2 the thyme, 1/2 the orange zest and the tomato paste.

veggies lobster bodies tomato paste

Cook until the shells are red and the vegetables are soft, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and carefully pour in 1/4 cup cognac.



lighting the cognac


Ignite the cognac with a long kitchen match and let the alcohol burn off. Return to the heat, sprinkle in the flour, stir, and cook for another 2 minutes. Add water to cover and stir up all the browned bits on the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. Add the cream and bring to a boil. Immediately decrease the heat and gently simmer until the soup is reduced and thickened, about 30 to 45 minutes.

pre strained soup

Strain this into a clean pot and season with salt and pepper if needed; keep warm.

straining the soup


more straining

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter in an ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add remaining onion, thyme, bay leaf, and orange zest along with the peppercorns and let this mixture cook for about 5 minutes. Add the lobster claws and tails; toss to coat with the fat and flavors. Remove the pan from the heat and carefully pour in the remaining 1/4 cup cognac. Ignite the cognac with a long kitchen match and let the alcohol burn off. Put the pan into the oven and roast until the lobster pieces are cooked through, about 15 minutes. Remove the lobster pieces and set aside. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the lobster meat from the claws and tails.

loster meat from claws and tails

Chop the meat roughly and add it to the strained bisque.


To serve, ladle the bisque into warmed soup bowls.

finished bisque





I added Amandas pics along the way. Now she made a couple of changes. We had some difficulty zesting the orange, she couldn’t find her zester so tried using a small grater. It was not working so instead she halved the orange and juiced it into the pot. Also she used more butter then originally called for in the recipe. I am not certain HOW much more because I was already into the spiked punch and Belinis at this point. Lets say a dollop more. A large dollop.

After straining the bisque she also felt it was missing something so when in doubt….add white wine. And fresh cracked black pepper.

I thought the bisque was DIVINE. I am looking forward to making it myself sometime.


For the Belinis it was about an ounce of peach Schnapps, an ounce of peach puree, 2 ounces of pure peach juice and topped off with champagne. YUMM!!


We had Cheesecake for dessert. There was a slight incident (that shall remain secret) with the cake but it was still delicious.


I am hosting Februarys Kitchen Bitch at my house and I am SERIOUSLY looking forward to it. It will be a themed soiree as well…full of fun food, decorations, games and party favors to take home. Bring on the Anti-Valentines day party!

Stay tuned for the next episode!


love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick

Spicy Shrimp Pasta

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: December 2011, Main Course, Seafood Dishes


One day while at my friends, Lisa and Robs, house Lisa decided to make us a snack. She grabbed the cast iron frying pan, some thawed shrimp, pickled hot peppers and a jar of chopped garlic. Not sure where she came up with this but she threw it all in the pan and out came some delicious spicy shrimp.

Years later I continue to make this for myself as the PERFECT snack. Dip it in some tangy cocktail sauce and its my favorite thing to eat while catching up on late night tv.

I have eaten this as is, made this shrimp to top a beautifully grilled steak and now I have decided to make a pasta out of it.

I love pasta. No, I REALLY love pasta. Fresh, homemade pasta is the best but if that is too much of a bother or you don’t have the time or desire then at least use the freshest, best ingredients for your sauce.

What you will need:

Spicy Shrimp Pasta Peppers Garlic

Shrimp, peeled and deveined

raw shrimp

2 large tomatoes, chopped

chicken stock

1 tsp garlic, chopped

2-3 pieces of pickled hot peppers, I use the PC brand ‘Mixed Hot Peppers’ or ‘Hot Banana Pepper Rings’


salt and pepper



Start by heating your skillet to medium (I prefer a non stick for this recipe instead of the usual cast iron). Melt your margarine. Add the shrimp and saute until pink.

lightly sauteed shrimp butter

Add a little more margarine and the chopped hot peppers and garlic. Saute for another minute.

sauteed shrimp butter hot peppers garlic

Remove shrimp from skillet and set aside.

shrimp on the side

Add the chopped tomatoes to the skillet. Don’t worry if there are still bits of garlic in the pan….thats a good thing!


Heat tomatoes until they begin to soften. This is the base of the sauce.

stewed tomatoes

Add a 1/4 -1/2 cup of chicken stock and the shrimp back to the skillet.

stewed tomato and chicken stock

Cover and simmer 5 minutes or until the sauce starts to thicken. Add salt and pepper to your tastes.

stewed tomato sauce with shrimp

Meanwhile in a saucepan boil your noodles. I like Linguini. It is just the right thickness for this recipe but feel free to use whatever you have or whatever style pasta is your favorite.

Add the boiled noodles to the skillet and stir.


Add some fresh grated parmesan cheese.


spicy shrimp pasta parmesan cheese





Serve immediately.

finished spicy shrimp pasta


I love Love LOVE this pasta recipe. It combines a few of my favorite things. I hope you decide to try it and let me know what you think!

Sorry I don’t have a lovely plated picture (like usual). I guess it smelled too good and I guess I was too hungry. I didn’t TAKE one! Next time I make it I promise to get a good photo!

Happy Holidays!

love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick

Parmesan encrusted striploin with spicy sauteed shrimp

Author: Cooped Up Chick  //  Category: Beef Dishes, July 2011, Main Course, Seafood Dishes


My friend Lisa has been making her steak like this for years and even though I am usually a “steak purest” (salt, pepper and BBQ sauce only!) it sounded so delicious when Lisa described it to me, I thought i’d give it a try.

Lisa suggested that when the steak is still frozen to sprinkle it with meat tenderizer but since I didn’t have any I just skipped that step. Minutes before grilling I sprinkled the steak with salt and pepper.

Start your grill on high and once it reached max temp throw on the meat. Sear each side quickly and then reduce the grill to medium and cook to your desired temperature. Brendan and I like our steaks around ‘Medium’ to ‘Medium Rare’.

Add your BBQ sauce and Parmesan cheese. DO NOT use the fake, shredded, Kraft “shakey” cheese. Splurge on the fresh shredded cheese or small block and shred it yourself. Huge difference in taste.

Once the cheese has melted remove from the grill and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before cutting into it. If you do not allow your steak to rest then you will lose all the juicy goodness onto your cutting board/plate instead of into your mouth where it should be.

While your steak is resting start up a frying pan for your shrimp (I recommend cast iron if you have it). Get it good and hot and add some butter or margarine. Add your peeled and deveined shrimp and cook until pink.

To make it spicy, add more butter and some chopped garlic and chopped pickled hot peppers. Stir for 1-2 minutes and place on top of your steak.


Brendan does not like seafood in the slightest (are we SURE he’s my child??) so his is shrimpless….

These steaks were incredible. The spicyness of the shrimp, the smokiness of the BBQ sauce (I used ‘Sweet Baby Rays’) and the tanginess of the parm cheese went wonderful together. In fact I would LOVE to have another steak just like it right now. Guess i’ll just have to wait til the weekend!! Gives me something to look forward to!


Serve it with your favorite side dish. Here I have it with ‘Coopers potato salad’ but it would also be fab with a nice, green salad or pasta salad or grilled corn!


love, peace and chicken grease,

-A Cooped Up Chick