Tag Archives: Rachael Ray

Jalapeno Beer-Braised Shrimp

Shrimp seared and then braised in a mixture of jalapeno, garlic and stout beer … yet another reason to drink while you’re cooking. I’d like to think that the first person to cook seafood with alcohol really just spilled some of her wine in the pan and went with it. There’s something about the complex flavors of good beer or wine that make certain seafood – notably shrimp – just bloom with flavor.

I’ve adapted this recipe from an old one of Rachael Ray’s – her magazine, not her show – and it’s a popular staple whenever I’m craving shrimp cooked with unique flavors.

This dish truly does taste different – the beer is strong and comes at you fast, along with the pepper, garlic and bay. Yet the shrimp still tastes nice and buttery, served over brown Basmati rice (or any rice).

Jalapeno Beer-Braised Shrimp


  • 2 pounds prawns or jumbo shrimp—peeled, deveined
  • Grill seasoning, such as McCormick’s Montreal Steak Seasoning (or just salt and pepper)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 to 2 jalapeños, seeded and chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 bottle of dark stout beer, such as Guinness (we used a dark Indian beer) – about 1 1/2 c.
  • 1 bay leaf, dried or fresh
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, a palmful
  • Cooked brown rice, for serving

Coat the prawns with the grill seasoning. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. When the olive oil is very hot, place about half the prawns in the skillet in a single layer and quickly sear them, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a plate and reserve. Repeat with the remaining prawns.

Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet, then add the chile pepper and the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the beer and bay leaf. Boil over high heat to reduce the liquid by half.

Return the prawns to the skillet with the sauce and cook, turning once, until just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and remove the bay leaf. Stir in the butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Garnish with cilantro (if you have it) and serve over rice!

Yum, I had my leftovers for a tasty, healthy lunch. Make sure you use a beer that you really love – that means if you don’t like Guinness, my goodness don’t use it! And if you don’t like any stout beer, I’m sure that an equally high-quality amber ale would work, too.

Enjoy, friends! xoxo


Spiced apple cake

For months, I’ve coveted a very special bundt pan at Williams-Sonoma. It’s a splurge, is smaller than normal bundt pans, and it called to me. I’ve never loved shaped loaf pans. I don’t like the traditional tube any more than I like the rose-patterned ones our mothers used. Until I saw this pan…which looks like some kind of smooth sea shell with sharp edges and clean lines.

So I finally bought this pan after finding an old recipe I clipped from Every Day With Rachael Ray three years ago. Don’t worry – if you are not an R-Ray fan, know that she did not write this recipe. I’ve found her magazine has better recipes because her editors are actually talented cooks who test recipes.

This will calm your craving for a comforting fall dish. Five big, tart apples sliced thin and added to a simple batter spiced with cinnamon. The apple-to-batter ratio is heavily in favor of the apples, making the cake oh so moist and soft. You’ll think there are too many apples, but they turn soft and smooth layers within the cake.

I brought leftovers to a breakfast meeting at work and everybody loved it.

Spiced Apple Cake


  • 1 cup canola oil, plus more for greasing
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 6 Granny Smith apples (about 1¼ pounds)—peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt or tube pan. In a medium bowl, combine the 2-1/2 cups of flour with the baking powder and 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon. In a large bowl, toss the apples with 1/4 cup of the sugar and the remaining 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and set aside.

In a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the 1 cup of oil with the eggs, orange juice, vanilla and the remaining 2 cups of sugar on medium speed for 1 minute. Add the flour in 3 batches, mixing until just combined. Add the apples and stir to combine. Transfer to the pan, leaving about an inch at the top, and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean, about 1½ hours. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 30 minutes before unmolding it onto a rack to cool completely.

Enjoy this toasted for a morning breakfast or at room temperature for a nice treat throughout the day. It’s not too sweet or dense like a pound cake, but just as moist and flavorful. I think it’s a keeper.

Enjoy, friends! xoxo