Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Hi there...I'm back!  Happy New Year!!!!  Well, what can I say except that being home with family and friends is great.  I enjoyed my vacation.  I tried to relax a little, party a little but more importantly, spend quality time with my loved ones.  I did some cooking and a lot of baking for Noche Buena and Christmas (my Ham turned out very good).  After that I decided I would relax and although I did entertain a little, I kept the cooking to a mere minimum! There were a few things that I did prepare; one being my famous Shrimp Extravaganza.  It is simple to make and absolutely delish! 

Cold Shrimp Extravaganza
1 1/2 lb. pre-cooked shrimp (medium size)
1-8 oz cream cheese (softened)
1 cup of shrimp cocktail sauce
1/2 cup of sliced kalamata olives
1/2 cup of red & green peppers (diced)

In round or square (9x13 inch) serving plate spread the cream cheese to cover plate evenly.  Add the cocktail sauce also spreading evenly over the cream cheese. Sprinkle the peppers and kalamata olives over the sauce and then cut the shrimp in half, sprinkle over mixture.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes and serve.  

To keep things light and fresh I also whipped up a quick Martini.  I was trying not to overdo it with the calories so I decided to try something new with Vodka.  I didn't want to use the store bought martini mixers so I went on a hunt.  This is what I put together.

Martini Mixer
1 1/2 oz. Vodka
2 oz. Light Cranberry Juice
2 oz. Key Lime No Calorie Seltzer Water

Pour vodka and cranberry juice in shaker with ice.  Shake and pour in chilled martini glass then add the seltzer. Surprisingly delicious!

Cranberries & Orange Ham
10 lb. Ham (bone-in pre-sliced)
2 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup fresh cranberries
1 cup orange juice
Preheat oven at 350°. Place ham on a baking pan.  In small sauce pan place butter cranberries and orange juice and simmer on low heat for 10 minutes until cranberries are plum and mixture is thickened.  Pour over ham, making sure some of the cranberries fall between the slices.  Cover and bake for 1 hour.  Remove and pour drippings over ham to keep from drying.  Bake another 15 minutes.  Remove and serve.

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