Opt for unique seafood entrees

  • Wednesday, February 26, 2014

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BPT – Serving seafood can allow you to combine both the “wow factor” your family and guests crave in a meal with the nutritional benefits they deserve. Nutrient-rich seafood is a good source of protein, vitamins and minerals, as well as omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA, which have been linked to brain health. Plus, with a wide variety of textures and flavors to choose from, you’re sure to find a type of seafood that appeals to every person at your table.

When purchasing seafood consider how the fish or shellfish looks and smells - and in the case of live shellfish, how it acts. If you’re buying live lobster or crab, avoid ones that appear lethargic, and instead look for ones that show leg movement.

Traditional seafood seasoning is flavorful, appealing and versatile – hence its popularity. But if you would like that flavor in an organic version, or one with less salt, try something new.

Frontier Natural Products offers three organic seafood seasonings – Original, Reduced Sodium and Blackened – that enhance a variety of seafood dishes. Made with certified organic, premium spices, all three flavors use real sea salt rather than evaporated table salt. Kosher-certified by KSA, the seasonings also help restore America’s wetlands – 1 percent of sales of the spices goes toward wetland preservation and restoration.

Smoked Gouda Lobster Macaroni and Cheese

Serves five

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

3 teaspoons Frontier Original Organic Seafood Seasoning, divided

1/3 cup whole wheat bread crumbs

8 ounces uncooked rotini (or other pasta)

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 1/4 cups 1 percent milk

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 cup sour cream

4 ounces smoked Gouda cheese, grated

6 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated

6 ounces raw lobster tail meat, cut into pieces (thaw if frozen)

1 1/2 teaspoons medium grind black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, melt one tablespoon butter. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, 1 teaspoon Seafood Seasoning and bread crumbs. Set aside.

Add rotini to the boiling water and cook until al dente, according to package directions. Drain pasta and reserve.

In a large saucepan, melt four tablespoons butter and add flour. Cook over medium heat, whisking, three to four minutes, until golden. Gradually add milk to flour mixture, whisking. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, then reduce heat to low.

Add the heavy cream, lemon juice, sour cream, Gouda cheese, cheddar cheese and two teaspoons Seafood Seasoning, stirring until cheeses are melted and sauce is smooth.

Spray a 9-by-9-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray and place cooked pasta and lobster in pan. Pour cheese sauce into pan and mix everything together.

Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture on top of macaroni and cheese, and then bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and the breadcrumbs are browned. Sprinkle final dish with black pepper.

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Simple, tasty takes on entertaining with seafood

Family Features – Nothing pairs better with cool, crisp weather than warm, home-cooked comfort food. Whether you’re searching for a dish for a tailgating get-together, a dinner party or just a relaxing night at home, look no further than the decadence of perfectly-prepared shrimp.

Wild-caught Gulf of Mexico shrimp, in particular, has an exceptionally rich flavor profile due to the warm, nutrient-dense water in which it was caught. Nothing packs a mouthful of savory flavor like fresh, Gulf shrimp.

An important part of a healthful diet, shrimp contains high-quality protein and a variety of essential nutrients, such as vitamins B-6 and B-12. Additionally, it is among the few natural sources of vitamin D. While low in saturated fat, shrimp offers healthy omega-3 fatty acids that have been shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease.

Here’s a fool-proof plan for preparing shrimp that will please the palate of everyone at the table:

Bring a large saucepan filled with lightly-salted water to a boil. Add the shrimp to the boiling water. Cook for one to three minutes or until the shrimp are pink and opaque.Drain and rinse shrimp in a colander under cold running water to stop the cooking process.

Spice up those shrimp with a steaming platter of Hot Gulf Shrimp Dip.

Hot Gulf Shrimp Dip

Recipe provided by the Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition

1 pound Gulf of Mexico shrimp, cooked, peeled, deveined, chopped

1/2 cup chopped yellow onion

1/2 chopped green onion

1 clove minced garlic

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

1 teaspoon Creole seasoning

1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, mozzarella or Monterey Jack)

Toasted pitas or sliced fresh bread

Combine all ingredients in an 8- by 8-inch baking dish, reserving 1/4 of cheese. Mix well. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of mixture.

Bake at 350°F for 25 to 30 minutes. Dip with toasted pitas or sliced fresh bread.

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For a simple, upbeat change, try adding a new ingredient, such as shrimp, to a traditional dish like pasta or tacos. Using frozen seafood eliminates unnecessary prep time and fuss, while still delivering big on flavor and quality. With options ranging from crispy Popcorn Shrimp to savory Salmon Burgers and crunchy Shrimp Spring Rolls, SeaPak Shrimp & Seafood Co. makes it exceedingly easy to bring more coastal flavor to your dinner table.

The recipe below combines easy pesto pasta and SeaPak’s new Parmesan Encrusted Butterfly Shrimp, for an innovative and flavorful entree that you can have on the table in just 30 minutes.

Parmesan Shrimp and Pesto Noodles

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Servings: 4

1 package (18 ounces) SeaPak Parmesan Encrusted Butterfly Shrimp (includes packet of tomato Romano sauce)

1 pound spaghetti, cooked al dente

1 cup prepared pesto

1 package flatbread or pita bread

Prepare shrimp according to package directions and keep warm. Heat tomato Romano sauce according to package directions. Warm flatbread or pita bread in microwave.

Toss pasta with pesto and top with shrimp. Garnish with basil and parmesan, if desired. Serve with bread and tomato Romano sauce on the side.

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