Cheddar Shrimp Nachos

I have found the perfect appetizer.  These are cheesy, spicy, shrimp-y, crunchy, and delicious.  Plus, I have to admit, they look so very pretty.  All of the colors are very festive.  They would be perfect for a party setting.

I made dinner last night for Zack and my dad.  These were the first thing I added to the menu.

This is actually the second time that I’ve made these for my dad and Zack.  They have raved about them both times.

I am not the biggest fan of appetizers as a general rule, but these are extremely easy to make and I highly recommend them.

Don’t ya want a bite? 😉

Cheddar Shrimp Nachos

Prep: 15 minutes.  Total: 17 minutes.

– 2 tablespoons Italian dressing, divided

– 1 lb frozen cooked, cleaned medium shrimp, thawed

– 1 red pepper, chopped

– 1 tablespoon blackened seasoning

– 6 cups tortilla chips

– 1 package (8 oz) shredded triple cheese with a touch of Philadelphia

– 1 green onion, chopped (optional)

– 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

– 1 jalapeno pepper, thinly sliced

Heat large cast iron skillet on high heat until it is very hot and starts to smoke.  Add 1 tablespoon dressing, shrimp, red peppers and seasoning; cook and stir 1-2 minutes or until shrimp is heated through and evenly coated with dressing mixture.  Stir in remaining dressing.

Cover large dish or platter with layers of half each of the chips, shrimp mixture, and cheese.  Repeat layers.

Microwave on HIGH 1-2 minutes or until cheese is melted, rotating plate after each minute (or, if your plate is too big for your microwave, put it in the oven at about 200 degrees until the cheese is melted).  Top with onions, cilantro, and jalapeno.


Sloppy Jerky Turkey Joes

I haven’t been feeling very well these past few days, so Zack and I made dinner together last night.  It’s a lot of fun working with him in the kitchen.  Plus it makes things move so much faster!

Consider this entry more of a recipe review.  Although these sloppy joes look really tasty, they were a one time thing.

I really liked that the recipe called for lots of fresh ingredients, but there was just something about the taste that I was not a big fan of.  This recipe was highly recommended to me, though, so I am going to still include the recipe so that you can try it for yourself.

As you can see from the picture, they definitely live up to the ‘sloppy’ part of their names.

Sloppy Jerky Turkey Joes

Prep time: 10 minutes.  Cook time: 15 minutes.  4 servings.

– 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

– 2 lbs lean ground turkey

– 1 onion, chopped

– 2 Fresno chile peppers or 1 Anaheim pepper, seeded and finely chopped

– 1 sweet bell pepper, seeded and chopped

– 3 to 4 cloves garlic, chopped

– salt and pepper

– 1 tablespoon paprika

– 1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated or minced

– 1 teaspoon allspice

– 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

– sprinkle of nutmeg

– 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves

– small handful cilantro leaves, finely chopped


– 2 tablespoons cider vinegar

– 2 tablespoons brown sugar

– 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

– 1 lime, juiced

– 1 cup tomato sauce

– 8 whole wheat rolls, split

– chopped scallions, for garnish (optional)

– chopped pickles, for garnish (optional)

– chopped cilantro leaves, for garnish (optional)

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  When the oil ripples and is hot, add the meat and brown.  Add the onions, chile, bell pepper, garlic, and salt and pepper.  Stir in the paprika, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, thyme, and cilantro.  Stir occasionally for 8-10 minutes.

In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, lime juice, and tomato sauce.  Stir the sauce into the turkey mixture.  Simmer for a few minutes, then serve on rolls with a garnish of scallions, chopped pickles, and chopped cilantro.

The water in the turkey when I put it in the hot oil caused quite an eruption.  Hot oil covered my stove, kitchen counters, and my arm.  It kept on popping and spraying everywhere until most of the water was cooked out.  I would recommend browning the turkey then adding some oil to cook the rest of the ingredients in, because that was disastrous.

When I was on my way home from school yesterday, Zack sent me a text message saying he had made me something.  When I got home, this was sitting on the step on our screened in porch.  Isn’t it cute?  He is so sweet.

Slow Cooker Firehouse Chili

Yesterday was a chilly, dreary day.  What better to do then break out the crock pot and cook up a pot of chili?  Chili goes hand in hand with fall…for good reason.  It warms your tummy and makes the fall weather tolerable.

I especially like this chili, because it was spicy.  Not too spicy where it was intolerable, but it still had a nice little kick to it.

Zack isn’t a big fan of chili that is really soupy with beans in it, so this kind was perfect for him.  It was just meat and sauce.  I really liked it, too.

It also couldn’t be any easier to make.  All you have to do is throw everything into the crock pot!  Plus, it makes your house smell so good all day long.

I sprinkled cheese on mine and added some diced jalapenos.  I love spicy food!

Slow Cooker Firehouse Chili

– 3 lbs ground turkey

– 2 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce

– 2 tablespoons garlic powder

– 1/4 cup chili powder

– 2 tablespoons ground cumin

– 1 tablespoon paprika

– 1/4 teaspoon ground oregano

– 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

– 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

– 1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker.  Cover and cook on high 1 hour.  Reduce heat and cook on low 4-6 hours.

Makes 6-8 servings.