Good morning! It’s the weekend, which means I will spend at least a small part of today trying to figure out which cocktail I’ll be sipping tonight as the sun slips over the yardarm. (Currently in the lead: Paper Planes.) Over at Life and Money, I wrote about a few things you can do on the weekend to get ahead for a week of easy dinners, including making a jar of quick pickled onions, by far the MVC of our fridge these days. (For the uninitiated: Most Valuable Condiment.) Lastly, the thistle feeder we hung in the backyard in early spring finally attracted a pair of goldfinches. They are stunning, and as I’ve mentioned before, I can’t help but think that their bright, bold presence means good things are ahead. Here few other things going on in my kitchen for your PPP dispatch…
Project: Fried Shrimp with Creole Rémoulade
For my Cup of Jo post this week, I wrote about three no-cook summer sauces, including the above Rémoulade from Bryant Terry’s Vegetable Kingdom. It’s a classic Creole style, mayo-based dipping sauce spiked with minced gherkins and capers and begs to add a big hit of flavor to anything fried, like shrimp. (For the sauce’s second life, I thinned it out into a delicious dressing for a Bibb lettuce, scallion, and radish salad.) Even though my COJ story was mostly about the sauce, a few commenters asked about the shrimp, so I thought I’d share it here, too. The general formula I use:
Add a generous amount of vegetable oil to a large, deep-sided skillet set over medium-high heat. In a bowl mix together 1/2 cup flour, 1 cup club soda (or seltzer) salt, and pepper. On a plate, mix about 1 cup bread crumbs (I used panko) with more salt and pepper. Individually dunk each piece of (peeled) shrimp in the mixture (let excess drip off), then dredge in the bread crumbs. Fry in a pan until cooked through, usually about 2 minutes a side. Drain on paper towels.
I love nothing more than a simply grilled grouper or salmon surrounded by fresh summery salads, but this reminded me: FRIED fish is really freaking good.
Pantry: Ready-Made Craft Cocktails
Must be Friday because there’s one more cocktail dispatch. I have to admit, I was a little skeptical of the pre-made batches from On the Rocks, but so far, the two that I’ve tried (the Aviation, above, made with Larios London Gin, dry cherry, and violet; and the Old Fashioned, made with Knob Creek bourbon, bitters, sugar cane, cherry, and lemon) have been great. Helps that they use all top-shelf booze. My friend Anthony gave them to us as a gift, and I certainly plan to seek them out myself.
Purpose: 100 Books for Kids
My friend Catherine Hong (frequent DALS contributor) assembled a list of 100 Books to Inspire Your Kid in 2020 over at Parents. To gather research she asked her longtime author heroes “What book made you a reader?” Check it out when you can.
The goal of the Project, Pantry, Purpose series to keep us sane, distracted, connected, and USEFUL. It began in March 2020. Please continue to comment below with suggestions for recipes, projects (for kids and adults), good deeds, donation ideas, stories, movies, games, puzzles. Or just tell me how you’re doing, what your daily routine is, and especially how DALS can help you or people in your community. You can also email me directly at email@example.com.