Maria Faires’ Oven Baked Shrimp

Maria Faires’ Oven Baked ShrimpthThis easy to prepare recipe makes shrimp that can be used as a main entrée, to top a salad or as an appetizer.

  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled, tail left on and deveined
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2  tsp salt
  • 2 garlic, minced
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  1. In a medium glass bowl, stir together the olive oil, salt, garlic, and black pepper. Season with crushed red pepper and or Italian Seasoning, if desired. Add shrimp, and toss to coat.
  2. Cover and refrigerator for 30 minutes or up to 3 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  5. Add lemon to marinade and shrimp, stir. Pour shrimp onto baking sheet and evenly distribute. Place in oven and bake about 7-8 minutes or until opaque. Do not overcook.
  6. To serve as an appetizer, place a toothpick or party appetizer frill in each and place on a plate.



Maria Faires’ Mini Caprese Appetizer Skewers

capreseThese make-ahead appetizer skewers are so delicious and impressive. 

If you’d like to make a composed Caprese Salad instead, go here for the recipe.

Makes 6 appetizer servings

  • 1 pt. grape tomatoes, washed, dried and halved
  • 10 to 14 fresh small (1/3 ounce Ciliegine Cherry Size) mozzarella cheese balls, cut into half. Trim edge of ball to flatten20160319_115928
  • See below on where to purchase 25 (2 ½ -inch) wooden frill cocktail appetizer toothpicks
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste
  1. Approach the tomato from the round (not cut side) and thread 1 tomato half, 1 piece of cheese, and another tomato half (approaching from the cut half) onto each skewer. Place skewers in a shallow serving dish. These can be covered and refrigerated until ready to serve.
  2. Mix together olive oil, balsamic vinegar and ¼ tsp kosher salt. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. When ready to serve, drizzle oil and vinegar dressing over the skewers; sprinkle with basil and salt and pepper to taste.

Top 4 Worst Thai Restaurant Appetizers

Thai restaurant menus have several deep-fried appetizers and I’ve listed my top four to avoid. Deep-fried anything is a caloric and heart-health nightmare.

CRAB PUFFS (Also called Money Bags or Golden Purses)
Golden brown deep-fried jumbo tortellini with stuffing of mixed imitation crab meat and cream cheese.

4 pieces contain 600 calories (150 calories each); 20 grams of fat and 500 mg sodium.

Deep-fried coconut prawns served with plum sauce.

4 small pieces are 355 calories; 24 grams fat; 745 mg sodium.

Mixed vegetables and vermicelli noodle wrapped in wheat paper wrap and deep-fried.

Each roll has 270 calories; 12 grams of fat and 375 mg sodium.

Breaded and deep-fried calamari with seasoned mayonnaise.

20 small pieces contain 300 calories; 16 grams of fat and 690 mg sodium.

*For optimum heart health an adult’s daily diet should consist of roughly 2,000 calories, fewer than 55 grams of fat, and less than 2400 milligrams of sodium.