Lent begins today

My week was very quiet. There were no meetings, nor any place I had to be at a particular time, and even though I planned to go exercise, there were problems at the Hospital pool and the water was too cold! On Thursday my friend and I went to Victoria for a short time, as we took a quilt to a lady who does machine quilting. Her shop is awesome, but for a change, there wasn’t a quilt on the machine. The last time I was there she had something totally unusual on it and encouraged me to go look at it. The entire design in all the fabric was cherries and so was the design the quilting would take. The monitor was showing what was happening as it was being quilted. By the time I got out of that place, I wanted to take up quilting, but by the time I got home, I knew I wouldn’t. When our Grandmas quilted, the blocks were pieced to a pattern, but they were truly “patchwork” quilts, using fabric scraps that were left over from making clothing, (and sometimes even from the shirt tails from husbands worn out shirts), that you could use on your bed to keep warm in the wintertime, now they are truly works of art with everything coordinating and much too beautiful to use. We also went to a shop that sells everything you need to make a quilt, all you have to do is cut the design out and piece it, and of course everything matches perfectly. The shop also has all sorts of pieced crafts, to make and use in your home. My fave was some cute cup towels with bunnies appliquéd on them, again, much too pretty to get dirty in the kitchen, but I loved being there and looking at them.
By the time y’all are reading this, I will be in either Devine or Castroville for my regular monthly time with family and my bunco friends. The trip is a little tiring, but getting to see friends and family makes it worthwhile, and this time, I get to see the newest great-granddaughter, and hopefully get to hold her, which wasn’t possible at Christmas. Luckily, my daughter has kept me up to date with photos of her, and she is a real cutie!
Today, Wednesday, February 26, Lent begins and it will be time for some meatless recipes. Since HEB® always has great frozen shrimp, some of the recipes will feature shrimp.
The following recipe for fried shrimp is from a friend, who not only used them in a restaurant, but also prepared them for sale when her husband had a shrimp boat many years ago. They are totally delicious and while messy to make, the result is well worth the work. The part I like is that you can use one of the packages of shrimp, prepare them and then put them on a cookie sheet and freeze for later use.
Fried Shrimp
2 pounds large shrimp, peeled, deveined and butterflied
Flour seasoned with salt and pepper
2½ sleeves of saltine crackers
Rinse and peel the shrimp, leaving the tails on, (usually, shrimp that are large enough to butterfly, are more expensive, but you can use the easy-peel shrimp from HEB® and just leave them whole).
Using your blender or food processor, grind 1½ sleeves of crackers very fine, crush the other half coarsely and mix the two together.
After all the shrimp are peeled, roll them in the flour, then dip in the milk and roll in the cracker crumbs. These may be fried immediately or frozen in a layer on a cookie sheet for future use. This way, you can cook as many or few as you like. (I actually had around 3-dozen or so shrimp, so I used more crackers, milk and flour!).
Lemon Broiled Fish
½ cup margarine or butter, melted
¼ cup REALEMON® Lemon Juice from Concentrate
2 cups fresh bread crumbs (4 slices)
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
½ teaspoon paprika
1 pound fish fillets, fresh or frozen, thawed
In small bowl, combine margarine and ReaLemon® brand. In medium bowl, combine crumbs, parsley and ¼ cup margarine mixture; dip fish into mixture. Broil until fish flakes with fork; top with crumb mixture. Return to broiler; heat through. Refrigerate leftovers. Makes 4 servings.
Good and Spicy Shrimp
3 to 4 pounds in shell (without heads)
2 lemons, thinly sliced
½ pound (2 sticks) butter
¾ teaspoon dried rosemary
¾ teaspoon dried basil
½ cup Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Tabasco® hot sauce
3 to 4 cloves garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
Place shrimp in a single layer, in large, shallow, glass baking dish. Cover with lemon slices. Mix remaining ingredients in saucepan, and heat to boiling. Pour over shrimp and lemons, cover and marinate overnight in refrigerator. Bring shrimp to room temperature before cooking. Bake in preheated 450ºF oven for 20 minutes.
The recipe for Capirotada a la Alamar is from Alamar Pompa when she lived next door to me. We had many good times together and since my kids all loved her cooking, I have several of her recipes. She was a great cook and a wonderful friend!
Capirotada a la Alamar
8 slices white bread
Butter or margarine
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup grated American cheese
¾ cup water
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup raisins
¾ cup chopped pecans
Mix together water, vanilla and raisins. Bring to boil, remove from heat and allow to cool. (This will plump the raisins). Mix together sugar and cinnamon. Toast bread, remove from toaster and lightly spread with butter or margarine, (not the tub kind).
Drain the raisins; saving the liquid you cooked them in. Place 4 slices of bread in a baking dish, sprinkle with ½ of the sugar/cinnamon mixture, add ½ of the raisins and ½ of the cheese. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Pour water in which you cooked the raisins over all. Cover with foil and bake at 350ºF about 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm or cold.