Welcome to my F-ing life!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Happy Birthday To Me - Perogi is gone, so Hello Coconut Shrimp and Crab Cucumber Salad

Sorry - My bad.

I promised a post on the legendary perogi that my Mom makes for me every year just for my birthday. She made hundreds of them over the Labor Day weekend.

And I failed you with no perogi post. Why?

1.  She starts making them at 5-6AM. This is not something I can do... Maybe at, say....noon? But not before the sun comes up. So there are no photos or commentary on the actual "process".
2.  Because I was too busy eating the buttery heaven on my plate to even think to snap a photo. If you ate them, you would understand...and you would understand why they were all gone as of yesterday.

So, what I will do is...later (like six months from now?) make a very small batch and document from start to finish. Or wait until next year. I haven't decided...

Since my perogi are all digested, I was wondering what to make for dinner.  Mom did the menu for this week (Hello Meat!) and she is going out to dinner tonight so I can make whatever I want (Hello Seafood!).

I have $25 to my name and I want seafood....

I had a Plan A and Plan B when I walked into the grocery store this morning. Plan A won because Jumbo raw shrimp already deveined was on sale. One point for me.  Surimi was also on sale. Two points for me.

Everything for dinner was in the cart in less than five minutes.  Three points for me. I was on a roll.

When walking down one particular isle that I didn't even need to be walking down, I discovered point number four:

I love pumpkin beer(s), food(s) and anything else one could think to do with a pumpkin. Hey, orange is my favorite color, so this obsessive fascination with pumpkin makes sense to me. Don't think I didn't crack one of these babies open at the stroke of noon either...but only one, because I have to drive to school to pick up Little Lawyer later today.

And then it all screeched to a grinding halt.


I wanted to make a pumpkin cake.  Someone taught me a neat little trick once.  You take a 16 ounce can of pumpkin and mix it with water and either a boxed angel food or spice cake mix and you get the most delectible snacky cake anywhere.

I don't do birthday cake.  Not my thing. Not even ice cream cake. But pumpkin snack cake with whipped cream? Bring it on...

No canned pumpkin. None. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Denied...

Apparently there was not the best pumpkin crop last year and there is just no pumpkin until this year's harvest. Ugh. No one has it, either. I called around. Nope, no pumpkin here. I swear, I'm gonna buy 30 cans when they are put on the shelf this year....

So - back to dinner...we had Coconut Shrimp with an Orange dipping sauce, Crab (surimi) Cucumber Salad and steamed Sugar Snap Peas. And then I made Papa Bear drive to McDonalds for an Oreo McFlurry.

Coconut Shrimp with Orange Sauce

2 lbs jumbo shrimp (raw, peeled & deveined, tail on), butterflied
Oil for frying

1-1/2 cup flour
2 eggs
1 to 1/2 cups beer (I used my birthday present beer above)
3 tsp baking powder
2 cups shredded coconut

Orange Sauce:
1 cup orange marmalade
2 tsp stone ground mustard
2 tsp prepared horseradish
Pinch of salt

Combine Orange Sauce ingredients and set aside.

In medium bowl, combine eggs, 1 cup flour, beer and baking powder. Place 1/2 cup flour and coconut in two separate bowls. Holding the shrimp by tail, and dredge in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg/beer batter; allow excess to drip off. Roll shrimp in coconut, and place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oil to 350 degrees in a large skillet.

Fry shrimp in batches: cook, turning once, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Using tongs, remove shrimp to paper towels to drain. Serve warm with dipping sauce. 

Crab Cucumber Salad

Crab meat or surimi 
1 large cucumber, peeled and sliced very thin
1 can bamboo shoots

2 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp ponzu sauce
1 tbsp chili sauce
1/4 cup lime juice
2 tbsp minced ginger
1 tsp salt
1 tsp siracha
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt
4 tbsp olive oil

Combine all dressing ingredients in blender except olive oil.  With the blender going, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Flake crab or surimi and season with salt. 

Spoon some dressing on bottom of serving plate. Add bamboo shoots and cucumber. Top with crab/surimi. Drizzle a little more dressing on top.


  1. Dinner was awesome! Happy Birthday, Baby!!!!

  2. looking forward to trying both of these recipes. I'm so glad I stumbled upon your blogs

  3. Aw, thanks Jazz! I appreciate that!!