Giovanni Style Shrimp Scampi

shrimp

If you have ever been a tourist or even a local in Hawaii, you must have visited the famous “Giovanni Shrimp Truck” in the North Shore. I remember that I used to drive 30- 45 minutes literally almost every weekend from where I lived in town to Kahuku just to eat at the place. I’ve tried some other shrimp trucks too in Kahuku, but they never tasted the same or even close to Giovanni. Their sauce is even on sale in bottles at Walmart in Hawaii. At least, I found some before.

Now, that I have moved away from Hawaii… every once in a while, I miss Giovanni’s shrimp. So, I came across this recipe that is very close and similar to it. I was in heaven, It’s so ono and so easy to make! Happy trying!

Ingredients:

1 lb big shrimp, headless, shell-on, tail-on, deveined
Scant 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 oz unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
5 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons white wine
Salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon fish sauce (optional)
Squirts of lemon juice
1/2 heaping teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Clean and rinse the shrimp and deveined. Pat dry with paper towels.

In a big plastic bowl or container, mix the flour and the cayenne pepper together. Transfer all the shrimp into the flour, toss around to coat the shrimp lightly with the flour. Transfer the shrimp out and dust off the excess flour. DO NOT OVERCOAT with too much flour. You just want a very light dust of flour on the shrimp. Discard the flour mixture.

Heat up a saute pan and add the butter. As soon as the butter melts, add the olive oil. Add the garlic and stir well before adding the shrimp into the pan. Saute the shrimp and keep stirring. Add the white wine, salt, sugar, and fish sauce (if using). Continue to saute until the shrimp is nicely cooked. Add a squirt or two of the lemon juice and the black pepper. Stir to combine well and serve immediately.

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Flavorbliss Lazy Mainland Style Laulau

 

laulau

I’m always homesick. Coming from Hawaii, I always miss the beaches, the people, the Aloha spirit, and the food. Since I’m on the mainland, I have always tried to make the local Hawaiian food myself to kill the food craving and homesickness. Trying out different kind of recipes.

I gathered this recipe from 3 different recipes. And so far, below is what I got and I have been happy with it. I have made it numerous times. Everyone loves it. It is the “lazy” shortcut kind, and mainland style because some ingredients you can’t even find them here, such as the taro and ti leaves. But, I found that, the banana leaves makes up for the ti leaves, and the canned spinach makes up for the taro leaves.

SO, it’s a lu’au!, and it’s ono! 🙂

Dried banana leaves
Cooking string/ twine
Cod or butter fish (optional- I normally don’t put any fish)
1 big slice of pork belly (I use this instead of fish), cut up into 1 inch cubes
Sea salt or kosher salt
2 cans (or more) of Del Monte spinach (I ALWAYS use Del Monte brand- to me, it has taste and smell like taro leaves)
1 lb pork butt, cut up or cubed

Season pork butt with salt. Give about 3-4 big pinches on each bundle (explanation below). If you use fish, also cut up the fish, or pork belly and season with salt. When you are done, prepare the banana leaves. Once you clean and dry up the leaves and they become soft, cut about 10- 12 inch in length. You want to make sure that at the end, you can wrap those pork like a bundle or a present. Place the cut up pork at the bottom, then the fish or pork belly, and season with salt on top. When they are done, place a handful of spinach on top of them then wrap your leaves into a bundle and secure it with the string on all fours sides. Make sure it is all tie up and secured.

Your choice of using steamer or crockpot, make sure you place the seam on the bottom to avoid the leaves from opening up. If you use crockpot, set it on low for 6-8 hours. I always put about 1/2 cup of water before I turn the crockpot on, so the laulau are moist and not too salty. If you use steamer, pile them in steamer, with metal strainer underneath so they don’t touch the water. You will be steaming for a while, at least for about 4 hours. Keep on checking though, especially for water level. You don’t want your laulau to burn. They will smell bad.

Easy and simple, right? That is why I called it “lazy”! Good luck.

Simple Crawfish Etoufee

It’s crawfish season, and I had about 2 lb of crawfish leftover from crawfish boil that we had earlier in the month. We didn’t know what to do with them, we froze the crawfish. The crawfish are boiled anyway.

Then, a friend of mine, had an idea to make etoufee out of the crawfish.  I didn’t know what that was until I moved down to a Southwest state. Apparently, it looks like a stew.. it’s a seafood stew. People make the etoufee with shrimps or crawfish. This was my first time making etoufee. So, I copied from 2 different recipes, and this what I got- Please pardon the mistakes, and modify them to suit your flavor.

I think this was pretty good, and I felt better eating it. I know I love it! But, whenever I go to a restaurant, I always feel guilty after eating it. It tastes so rich and yummy!

Serves 10

Boil the live crawfish in a big pot of orange juice with lots of crawfish boil, 2 big onions, and 2 big garlic bulbs, minced- reserve the broth
1/2 cup butter (8 tbp)
2 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced (I love garlic)
1/4 cup and 2 tbps all purpose flour
2 pound crawfish tails
6 tablespoons canned tomato sauce
6 green onions, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, or to taste
6 cups water or use the broth from the crawfish boil
Minced parsley (optional) for garnish

Peel the crawfish tails and side aside the tail meat. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, and saute until transparent. Stir in the garlic, and cook for a minute. Stir in the flour until well blended. Gradually stir in the tomato sauce and water, then add the crawfish tails and bring to a simmer. Add the green onions and season with salt, pepper, and Cajun seasoning. Add more seasoning to taste. Simmer for 5 to 15 minutes over low heat, until the flavors is soaked in. If needed, add more butter for taste.

See, why etoufee is so good? It’s all about the butter! I used Smart Balance margarine, so I don’t have to feel so guilty! LOL!

You can eat the etoufee over rice or with pasta, such of penne. Yummy!! Enjoy!