Wednesday, December 24, 2014

A Stormy Christmas Eve

I woke up to 65' with heavy rain.  This was going to be the perfect day for reading.  As usual, I was the first one up.  I sat by the window for sometime, watching the rain pour while the waves crashed onto the shore.  The clouds hung low over the ocean as I retrieved my book and resumed my novel, The Summer Wind by Mary Alice Monroe.  This book that also takes place on a beach, Sullivan's Island, is about the reuniting of three half-sisters, second chances, sisterhood and lifelong bonds.   Snuggling into a cushy chair with my diet coke and a view of the storm I sat for hours, losing myself in my book.  Slowly, I was joined by Stone and Abby Gail, each excited for a lazy morning.  Stone began reading his novel by David Baldacci and Abby Gail watching her series on her computer.  

Christmas Eve, Holden Beach, Shrimp Ceviche,Calamari Taco's,Oatmeal Pie.

There was finally a break in the rain and Stone and I took off for a walk, not making it even a mile when the rain started. Quickly we made our way back just prior to the downpour.  We eventually did get to walk 4.75 miles.  Again the rain started up.  I was so disappointed that I didn't find any treasures on the beach today.  I just knew with the storm it would bring in  all sorts of finds.  After giving up on walking, Abby Gail and I decided to make Ceviche for a late afternoon appetizer.  I have made this many times and it never disappoints. I served it with these Holiday Tortillas Festive Chips that were red and green.  It didn't take us long to devour the entire dish.  Either we were hungry or it was just that good.  I think it was the latter.

Christmas Eve, Holden Beach, Shrimp Ceviche,Calamari Taco's,Oatmeal Pie.
Shrimp Ceviche
Yield: 4 Servings
Ingredients:
1 pound 51-60 count peeled and deveined shrimp
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon lime zest
1 avocado diced
1 ((10 ounce) container grape tomato's, sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup finely chopped peeled cucumber
1/4 cup thinly slice green onion
1- 1/2 Tablespoons seeded and minced jalapeño 
Lime wedges for garnish
Tortilla Chips for serving
Instructions:
In a bowl, combine shrimp and 1/2 cup lemon juice and 1/2 cup lime juice.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to overnight, stirring at least 2-3 times.
In a bowl, mix together oil, paprika, sugar, lemon zest, salt, lime zest and remaining 2 Tablespoons each lime juice and lemon juice.
Just before serving, drain excess liquid off of shrimp mixture.  Add cilantro, tomato, onion, cucumber, oil mixture, avocado, and jalapeño; toss to combine.  Serve immediately, garnished with lime wedges.  Serve with tortilla chips, if desired. Recipe adapted from: http://foxeslovelemons.com/shrimp-ceviche/

When we are at the beach, I like to cook at our cottage instead of going out to eat.  I do tend to make things that use just a few ingredients since my supplies are limited here.  Therefore, instead of breading and frying my calamari, I just purchase it frozen and it works just fine.  Nobody at our table was complaining.

Christmas Eve, Holden Beach, Shrimp Ceviche,Calamari Taco's,Oatmeal Pie.
Calamari Taco's
Serves: 4
Instructions:
2 boxes frozen  (10 ounces each) crispy breaded calamari rings
1/2 bag shredded coleslaw mix
1 handfull cilantro, chopped
Flour tortilla's
Yum Yum Sauce
Directions:
Bake calamari rings as directed on package.  Add cilantro to coleslaw mix.  Place flour tortilla on a plate.  Put a desired amount of coleslaw mix onto of half of tortilla.  On top of that spoon on some yum yum sauce.  Lastly place calamari rings on top of yum yum sauce.
  
Here is a little history on Oatmeal Pie.  During the Civil War, pecans were in short supply in the South, therefore oatmeal was substituted for pecans and this tasty pie was created.
Abby Gail came across this particular recipe months ago.  She even sent it to me since I love to entertain, saying I should bake this for one of my dinner parties.  I never did.  So I promised that I would make it on Christmas Eve since she would be spending the holidays with us and be able to try it.   This pie is sooooo yummy.  I can't believe I waited so long to try it.  I will definatly be making this again very soon.

There was no rolling pin or pie pans here at the cottage so I had to purchase some disposable pans.  For a rolling pin I used a wine bottle that was chillin in the refrigerator.  Hey, it worked, and being chilled, it kept my crust cold.  My mama said that my grandma always used a wine bottle for a rolling pin.

Christmas Eve, Holden Beach, Shrimp Ceviche,Calamari Taco's,Oatmeal Pie.
Oatmeal Pie
Ingredients:
2 cups light brown sugar
2 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup melted butter
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups quick-cooking oatmeal (uncooked)
1 (9")pie crust, unbaked
Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350'.  In a large whisk together sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt.
Stir in beaten eggs, corn syrup, melted butter and vanilla until combined.
Mix in oatmeal.
Pour into unbaked pie crust.
Bake for 45-50 minutes.  If needed, cover crust with aluminum foil to avoid burning.
Let cool to allow filling to firm up a bit, or not if you just can't.  Serve warm with ice-cream.  Recipe from: http://shewearsmanyhats.com/oatmeal-pie/

With our stomachs full we settled in to watch, "It's A Wonderful Life."  A 1946 Christmas Fantasy Comedy-Drama film.  It wouldn't be Christmas without seeing this movie.  We ended our evening by having some hot-tub time.