Posts Tagged ‘spicy’

An interesting combination of flavours.

“Salsa Shrimp Rollups” are another creation of mine. Shrimp, tomato sauce, salsa, and cottage cheese are mixed into the filling, then wrapped in lasagna noodles, and sprinkled with deliciously salty feta cheese.

To serve as a main dish, give 2 to 4 rollups to each person, and as a side, one or two rollups. These will compliment garlic bread, soups, and a variety of chicken or fish dishes.

I used a ‘hot’ variety of salsa to ensure that the salsa flavour was in the forefront. With mild salsas, it will be merely an accent.

Time to Make: 45-50 minutes

Serves: 2, as written


  • 6 lasagna noodles
  • 200 g (7 oz) shrimp
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup hot salsa
  • 50 g (2 oz) feta cheese
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley
  • sprinkle of garlic powder

What to Do:

  1. Boil shrimp in a pot on the stove.
  2. Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions, drain.
  3. When the shrimp are cooked, cut them into smaller pieces.
  4. Combine shrimp, cottage cheese, tomato sauce, and salsa in a small bowl. Add around 1/2 tsp of dried parsley.
  5. Lay out the noodles. Spread the filling down the entire length of the noodle, and roll it. Be careful not too roll it too tightly, or the filling will come out.
  6. Arrange the rolls in a small baking dish on a thin layer of tomato sauce. Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on top as well. Sprinkle with feta and garlic powder.
  7. Bake in a 400 F (200 C) oven for about 25 minutes. Serve hot.


No shrimp? Use scallops, or if you dislike seafood, try ground meat. Ricotta cheese easily stands in for cottage cheese, as does parmesan for the feta. Feel free to use your canned or homemade pasta sauce of choice, rather than tomato sauce.


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Spicy fries make a nice treat.

These fries are quite simple to make, and certainly a healthier choice than the alternative, using only a few ingredients and giving you full control of the salt shaker.

The quantities that I’ve listed for the spices are approximate. Use however much you like. Remember, though, that the time in the oven will dull the spices, so don’t be too alarmed if you think you’re using a bit too much spice.

Time to Make: 40 minutes: 5-10 minutes prep, about 30 minutes in the oven

Serves: 1, as written, adjust as needed


  • 1 large potato – 200 g (7.5 oz)
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • pinch each of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp dried parsley

What to Do:

  1. Slice the potato into long, thin strips. If you like, cut wedges, but remember that those will take longer to cook.
  2. Toss the slices in oil. Make sure they’re evenly coated, so that the spices stick and they brown evenly.
  3. Season the fries. The exact quantities of each are up to you. I like the chili powder being the prominent spice, though they would be good with a strong garlic flavour, as well.
  4. Arrange the fries in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 F (200 C) for about half an hour. Halfway through the cooking time, turn all of the fries over.
  5. Salt, and enjoy!

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An incredibly fast and spicy main dish.

Let me introduce you to ‘Spicy Beef Pasta’.

I had a minor dilemma today, namely the leftover ground beef sitting in my fridge waiting to be used.

One of the biggest benefits of not relying on recipes, and instead cooking using your senses, is that you can improvise based on the ingredients you have on hand. Its easy to spend an inordinate amount of time searching for recipes which use your leftovers, but that isn’t necessary.

With this recipe, the main ingredients are quite basic, what really completes this recipe, as with most recipes, are the spices.

Time to Make: 20 minutes if you have leftover cooked ground beef, add another 10-15 minutes if you have to cook the meat.

Serves: 1, as written


  • about 50 g (2 oz) cooked ground beef
  • about 50 g (2oz) dry pasta – your favourite kind should do just fine; I used rotini
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • splash of soy sauce
  • splash of worcestershire sauce
  • spices: a pinch each of thyme, marjoram, sage, crushed red pepper, and garlic powder
  • about 1/8 tsp paprika

What to Do:

  1. Start by cooking the meat.
  2. While its cooking, boil your pasta of choice.
  3. Don’t cook the pasta fully, or it will end up mushy and overcooked. Drain it when its still a minute or two from al dente.
  4. Combine the pasta and cooked meat in the same pot you just cooked the pasta in. Over medium heat, add about 1/2 cup of tomato sauce.
  5. Stir in a splash of soy sauce and a splash of worcestershire sauce. A ‘splash’ is a poorly defined quantity, I know, but exact measurements are too limiting. If you’re unsure how much to use, start with just a few drops of each, and then taste and adjust.
  6. Add your spices. I usually pour a tiny portion into the palm of my hand and sprinkle it into the cooking pot and adjust as necessary. I knew mine was done when it started smelling like ribs with barbecue sauce.


The beef could easily be replaced with other ground meats. If you use ground chicken or ground turkey, you may need more worcestershire sauce to add to the ‘meaty’ flavour, as well as a bit of oil to bring out the flavours. Pine nuts or slivered almonds would also complement this recipe, if you have some on hand. Raisins, likewise, would create an interesting dish. Feel free to use rice instead of pasta. Cooked spinach or green beans would also be interesting.

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