Let's Dish With Linda Lou

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Pasta Salad With Lobster And Grilled Corn

Seafood Pasta Salad

Remember my post on How To Cook And Open A Lobster? This dish is going to require quite a bit of sweet lobster meat for my Pasta Salad With Lobster And Grilled Corn.

Opening a lobster for some can be a little intimidating but I’ve made it as easy as possible in my post. If you’re able to get a hold of lobster meat already prepared, by all means, feel free to use it in this recipe.

This recipe is perfect for summer and uses my Lemon Vinaigrette which pairs perfectly with this salad. I’ve provided a link for my Lemon Vinaigrette at the bottom of this post.

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Mini Sweet Bell Peppers

Red Onion

Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Red and Yellow Grape Tomatoes

grape tomatoes

Red Onion, Mini Sweet Pepper, Italian flat-leaf Parsley

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Cooked Lobster

Cooked Lobster

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Seafood Pasta Salad (2)

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Seafood Pasta Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 21 minutes
Total Time: 31 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: indoor grill-pan, 1 (6-quart) saucepot, colander, bundt pan, chef’s knife, paring knife, large mixing bowl, Microplane, silicone brush

Ingredients:
1 1/2 pounds of lobster meat, cooked and cooled, diced into bite-size pieces (1 (2-pound) lobster)
5 ears of sweet corn, grilled, kernels removed (approx.2 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup of Canola oil
1/2 pint of red grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 pint of yellow grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup of edamame, shelled
1 pound (16 ounces) of corkscrew pasta, cooked drained and cooled completely
1/4 cup of red onion, finely diced
1 mini-sweet red pepper, seeded and finely minced
1 lemon, zested
2 Hass avocados, pits and flesh removed, diced
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup of Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup of Lemon Vinaigrette

Directions:
Start by cooking the lobster in advance. Instructions can be found on my link below for directions. Once the lobster is fully cooked, allow to cool, remove the lobster meat from the tail and claws, then chop into bite-size pieces. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate.

While the lobster is cooking, prep the mini sweet red pepper, onion, and Italian flat-leaf parsley. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Halve the grape tomatoes add those to the bowl and the edamame.

Pour Canola oil into a small measuring cup. Using a silicone brush, brush each of the ears of corn with Canola oil. On a preheated indoor grill pan over medium heat, place the arrange the ears of corn on the grill. Allow the corn to cook for 3 minutes on each side until slightly brown. You’ll notice the corn will start to produce beautiful charred marks which adds a smokey flavor without a lot of effort. The total process should take about 9 minutes.

Using a bundt pan, stand the one ear of corn of the center, as seen above, and remove the kernels. Repeat the process until all the kernels have been removed from each ear of corn. Discard the cobs. Add to the large mixing bowl with the rest of the ingredients.

In the meantime, have a large saucepot of boiling salted water on the stove. Drop the pasta and give it a good stir. Cook between 8 to 12 minutes. Taste the pasta after 8 minutes of cooking to be safe. You’re looking for the pasta to be al dente. Once al dente, drain into a colander, run under cold water until the pasta has cooled completely and does not clump together.

Add the grilled corn kernels, chilled lobster, lemon zest, and pasta to the mixing bowl containing the other ingredients. Stir to combine. Finally, add the diced avocado, gently stir to combine, not to smash the diced avocado. You want it to keep its integrity.

Start by adding 1/2 a cup of my Lemon Vinaigrette (add more if needed) to the bowl. Using a large rubber spatula, fold in the dressing coating all the ingredients with this super flavorful dressing.

Ladle a good helping of my Pasta Salad With Lobster And Grilled Corn into a porcelain serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Great Tips For Artisanal Bread, Corn On The Cob, And Everything Strawberry

Vinaigrettes, Balsamic, Cilantro-Lime, And Lemon

How To Cook And Open A Lobster

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Sweet Italian Sausage And Cavatelli Soup

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Sweet Italian Sausage And Cavatelli Soup (2)

I’d first made this soup some time ago and found a couple of pictures of the finished dish. I’m not even sure how I came up with this soup. I just started throwing ingredients together and my Sweet Italian Sausage And Cavatelli Soup was born.

I just bought an inductions burner and I was super excited to try it out. I know it’s going to work perfectly when my sister and I film my next video. Anyway, I decided to make this soup while I had some time off from work.

We’re living in extraordinary times due to COVID-19. People are doing a lot more of grocery shopping and cooking at home, because of a shelter-in-place order, that said, many products, because of high demand, had limits placed on them or they weren’t readily available. I wasn’t able to find any Cavatelli pasta so I’m going to be substituting baby shells. I found the shape of the two kinds of pasta to be similar. Cavatelli pasta will be back on the grocery shelves soon enough so I’m keeping the name for this dish.

Whenever I make a soup using sausage, I like to cook the sausage separately then incorporate it into the soup. This makes what I call a clean broth. By cooking the sausage separately and leaving all the grease with the pan I believe makes a big difference in the finished soup.

Sweet Italian Sausage, And Cavatelli Soup

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Onions

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Frezno Chili

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Spinach

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diced roma tomatoes

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Olive Oil

Thyme

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Rosemary-1Rosemary (2)

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diced roma tomatoes

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Sweet Italian Sausage, And Cavatelli Soup

Sweet Italian Sausage And Cavatelli Soup (2)

Homemade Croutons

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yields: 6 to 8 servings
Equipment: 1 (6-quart) Dutch oven, 1 (12-inch) sauté pan, chef’s knife, mesh sieve, 1 (6-quart) stockpot, colander, large slotted spoon

Tip:  The night before, place the frozen spinach in a mesh sieve over a bowl to drain. You could also use the defrost setting on your microwave the thaw out the spinach.

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 pound of sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (substitute a hot variety)
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
1 head of green cabbage, cored and quartered
1 1/2 cups of carrots, 1-inch dice
1 large onion, diced, 1-inch dice
3 ribs of celery, 1-inch dice, include leafy tops
1 Fresno Chili, seeded and minced
1 fresh bay leaf, substitute dried
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 cup of diced Roma tomatoes
1 (10-ounce) package of frozen spinach, thawed and drained (squeeze all excess water from the spinach)
1 quart of chicken stock, unsalted
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups of Cavatelli pasta (substituting baby shells)
Italian flat-leaf parsley for garnish
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Directions:
Begin by dicing and mincing all the vegetables. Drain and squeeze as much water from the thawed the spinach as possible.

Remove the casings from the sausage links. In a large sauté pan over medium heat add olive oil and sausage. Using a wooden spoon, break up the sausage and cook until sausage is no longer pink about 10 to 12 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, allowing as much grease as possible to stay with the pan, transfer to a bowl or plate lined with a paper towel, set aside.

In a preheated Dutch oven over medium-high heat add olive, diced onions, and red pepper flakes. Add the diced carrots, celery, bay leaf, Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, and fresh finely chopped thyme. Stirring, frequently, cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the minced garlic, cook for 1 minute more.

Next, add the cooked sausage, cabbage, and diced tomatoes. Add the chicken stock, bring up to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally,  for 40 minutes.

After 30 minutes, remove the cover, taste for seasoning (add salt if needed). Add the Cavatelli pasta, stir to combine. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes before adding the spinach, again stir to combine. Turn the heat off, and serve.

Ladle a good helping into a porcelain soup bowl. Add fresh parsley, freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and Homemade Ciabatta Croutons. This is my Sweet Italian Sausage And Cavatelli Soup.

My Hanging Organic Herb Garden And Summertime Flowers

Homemade Ciabatta Croutons

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Broccoli Rice Casserole

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My Broccoli Rice Casserole is a great side dish, wonderful for the holidays, and perfect for family get-togethers.

I’m using a quick-cooking long-grain white (Basmati) rice because it’s my favorite. You could definitely substitute short-grain rice like Arborio which also would be delicious, it’s a personal preference. I’m also using frozen broccoli florets for this dish.

Most Broccoli Rice Casserole recipes call for sour cream, here I’m substituting Mascarpone cheese because whenever I can add Mascarpone to dishes, sweet or savory, I do.

One other option I’ve added to this recipe is to add a light sprinkling of breadcrumbs over the top of this dish, totally up to you. Let’s get started.

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Basmati Rice

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Tuscan Soup (6)

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The next step is totally optional. If you prefer a crunchy topping to your Broccoli Rice Casserole follow the steps for toppings in the ingredients list below.

Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Breadcrumbs

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yields: 6 to 8 servings
Equipment: 1 (2-quart) casserole dish, 1 (3-quart) saucepot, colander, 1 rimmed baking sheet pan, aluminum foil, medium-size mixing bowl, large mixing bowl, chef’s knife

Note: One bag of rice makes about 2 cups of cooked rice. I made both bags of rice to ensure I’d have 2 cups of cooked rice.
Note: Flour can sometimes have lumps from packaging or storage. If you find your all-purpose flour is slightly lumpy, sifting the amount of flour you need first is always a good idea.

Ingredients:
1 pound (16 ounces) of frozen broccoli florets, thawed, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cups of long-grain white rice, parboiled (Basmati, Success Boil-in-a-bag)(substitute short-grain rice, Arborio rice)
3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) of butter, unsalted, extra butter for greasing baking dish
1/4 cup of all-purpose flour, sifted
2 cups of chicken broth/stock, reduced-sodium or unsalted (substitute vegetarian broth)
2 cups of whole milk (substitute 2%)
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons of sweet paprika
1 tablespoon of dried oregano
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt, 1 tablespoon for the rice
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon of dried parsley flakes
2/3 cup of Mascarpone cheese, room temperature (substitute sour cream)
1 cup (8 ounces) of mild Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese mix (substitute sharp cheddar)

Toppings: Optional
1/4 cup each of seasoned Italian breadcrumbs
1/4 cup of plain Panko breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons of finely chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley for topping (optional)
4 tablespoons of olive oil

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Start by buttering the baking dish and placing it onto a rimmed baking sheet pan. Fill a large pot with water. Submerge the 2 bags of quick-cooking rice. Bring up to a boil, add a tablespoon of Kosher salt, cook the rice, according to box directions, only half the time, 4 to 5 minutes. Using a pair of tongs, remove the 2 bags, allow the water to drain, open, and dump the parboiled rice into a medium-size mixing bowl. To the same pot of hot boiling water add the broccoli, stir, for 1 minute, drain into a colander, transfer to a large mixing bowl, set aside.

In the same pot, add the butter, onions, and garlic and sweat them for a few minutes or until translucent (you don’t need to develop any color)n add the flour, stir it all in for a minute then add the milk and stock. Whisk well to get rid of any flour lumps and simmer while stirring the whole time until the mixture thickens.

Add the seasonings, whisk them in to combine really well, then add 2/3 of the cheese and Mascarpone cheese followed by the partially cooked and drained rice and broccoli.

Give everything a big stir (at this point the mixture is runny and that’s exactly what you want because the rice will soak up the sauce as it cooks) pour into the buttered baking dish, cover with foil. Transfer to the oven and cook for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, remove the foil, sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese (this would be the time to add the seasoned breadcrumb mixture over the top followed by drizzling 4 tablespoons of olive oil) place back into the oven, and cook uncovered for about 20 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.

Let rest for about 10 minutes before serving. Serve hot. There you have it my Broccoli Rice Casserole.

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