Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Creamy Garlic Butter Fettuccine with Shrimp and Scallops

Nearly two years ago, I introduced our family to a low-carb eating lifestyle.  I really cut back on our consumption of potatoes, bread and pasta, mostly. Homemade pasta dishes at our house have been few and far between since then. I haven't made a creamy pasta dish since I can't even remember when, so I thought I'd  treat ourselves for dinner tonight.  What did I make?  A seafood pasta in a creamy garlic butter sauce.  It turned out so delicious, I wanted to share my recipe with you.  My recipe serves 4-6.  You can, of course, divide the recipe in half, to serve 2-3 people.

Creamy Garlic Butter Fettuccine with Shrimp and Scallops


4 tbsp or 1/4 cup butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups heavy cream (35% fat content)
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
pinch freshly ground black pepper
2 cups thawed, peeled raw shrimp
2 cups thawed scallops
1 cup frozen peas 
2 tsp freshly chopped thyme (optional)
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs (optional) 

1 1/2 pounds fettuccine pasta


First heat butter in a large pot over medium heat. Once the butter melts, 
add the garlic and stir until soft, but not brown.

Add heavy cream and raise heat to medium high until mixture begins to boil (five minutes). Stir occasionally.
Add salt and pepper. Lower the heat to low and simmer slowly for ten minutes to thicken the cream; stirring occasionally.

In the meantime, while you are waiting for the cream to thicken, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (I used a dutch oven) and cook the fettuccine until al dente. Once cooked, drain the water and set aside.

Next, add the shrimp, scallops, peas and thyme to your thickened cream mixture.  You will need to raise the heat to high again to bring the mixture back to a boil.  Once the shrimp turn pink, turn off the heat.  A couple minutes should do the trick. Make sure not to overcook the seafood, or it will turn tough.

Pour the creamy seafood mixture into the pot of fettuccine you had set aside. With a wooden spoon, incorporate the sauce into the pasta until evenly distributed.  Cover the pot with the lid and let stand for several minutes to thicken up.  You can serve it hot, as is, or you can...

Add bread crumbs over top and place your dutch oven (or broiler safe dish) under the broiler for just a few minutes until crumbs are golden brown (watching ever so carefully, so the breadcrumbs don't burn!).

The bread crumbs add a delicious, crunchy texture to the dish!

And here it is served on a plate...

Mmm!  It was so delicious!

Bon Appetit!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Last days in Florida and Homeward Bound

Today's the day! I am finally going to share the last stretch of our trip to Florida with you.  After all, it's only been TWO months since we got back!  I feel terrible that I've neglected my blog for so long (nearly one month since my last post).  My excuse is that it's summer break, my girls are home, and I just haven't made time for it.  Today, I am making the time!

I ended my last post with a picture of a tired little girl, fast asleep, after a fun, full day in Magic Kingdom.  We all had a good night's sleep after all the magic and excitement of that day.  The following afternoon, we drove approximately one hour north of where we were staying to the historic city of...

St. Augustine

St. Augustine is famous for being the oldest continuously inhabited city in the United States.  It was founded in 1565 by a Spanish admiral and served as the capital of Spanish Florida for 200 years. Today, it is a very popular tourist destination known for its historic homes, buildings, and architecture.

Approaching the Bridge of Lions (on the left side of the picture )

Here we are at the entrance of the bridge, standing by one of two replicas of the Medici Lions, from Florence, Italy.

St. Augustine Marina and Bridge of Lions

What a charming, historic city!  I was enchanted and so thankful that we decided to come here (after a bit of coaxing from me)!  We enjoyed walking along St. George Street and browsing the unique little shops.  We stopped for some refreshing homemade lemonade, too!

Pedestrian-only St. George St.

The Old Grist Mill on St.George St.  The lower level of the building is a gift shop and upstairs is a tavern.

The oldest wood school house in the USA!  Unfortunately, it was closed when we got there.

We stopped for dinner at a Greek restaurant called Athena.  The food was delicious.  But, the most memorable part of my day was a stop at this place...

O-M-G!  This is where I undoubtedly ate THE BEST ice cream I ever tasted in my ENTIRE life!  I chose the toasted coconut ice cream on a waffle cone.  I tried to make it last as long as I could.  I knew I wouldn't be having another one of these for quite some time (who knows how long)!  I had never heard of Kilwin's before...have you?

I felt so thankful for having visited this historic, romantic city.  We walked along the pedestrian street, enjoying our ice cream under the starry skies.  What a magical night, one I won't soon forget!

The next day was our last full day in Florida. We wanted to take advantage of the sunshine, so we declared it a beach day.  Only fifteen minutes from our bungalow, we spent most of our day at...

Daytona Beach

The girls and I walked along the shore for what seemed like forever, while 

Nuno did some fishing off the Sunglow Pier.

We rented this umbrella and chairs for the day, but spent most of our time in the water!

Fun in the sun with daddy!

We headed back to our bungalow late in the afternoon to shower and rest before our last dinner in Ormond Beach.

We went for dinner at BoneFish restaurant.  I had the grilled grouper fillet with rice and green beans (my friend Nancy said I couldn't go to Florida and not eat grouper). It was delicious. I love fish, especially grilled fish!  And for dessert...

this hot and yummy coconut pie with rum sauce!  Mmm!

And to top it all off,  we were treated to this amazing view...
of the sunset, right in the middle of the restaurant parking lot!  How lucky is that?

Good night Florida...I will miss you!  I hope to see you again real soon!  

The next morning, (June 13) we packed our suitcases and memories into the car and said goodbye to our bungalow, the place we had called home for an entire week.  By 8 am, we were out the door, heading back towards home.

Do you remember my first post about our road trip to Florida (The Joy is in the Journey)?  Do you remember how much I loved our stop in Savannah, Georgia and hoped we would return again on our way back?  Well...we did!!  

 We parked the car and walked along River Street, browsed inside the gift shops, and bought some of their famous pecans to take back home.  It was so incredibly hot and humid!  We went into every little shop we could, just to feel the cold air from the air conditioning! 

And I couldn't leave Savannah without stopping to take a picture by the Waving Girl Statue!
If you don't know the story of Florence Martus, you can learn about it here:

We stopped for lunch here, at The Cotton Exchange, along River St. and we had the most delicious meal.  It was recommended by our waitress - shrimp and grits!  It was my first time eating grits. I loved it!
 A customer sitting next to us mentioned to the waitress that his shrimp and grits were the best he's ever tasted.  He was from the South and told her that he had tried shrimp and grits at many restaurants, but these were the best by far.  I considered myself pretty lucky!

Home again, home again, jiggity jig!

After our scrumptious lunch, we headed back to our car and continued on our way back home; driving through South Carolina, North Carolina, and finally stopping for the night at a hotel in Fancy Gap, Virginia.  We were on the road again early the next morning; driving through West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York. We crossed the border into Ontario, Canada and arrived at home, safe and sound, by bedtime.  

We had a fabulous vacation, filled with happy memories and so many firsts!  I'm so glad you could come along with me.  I hope you enjoyed the ride!