Purchasing the same foods each week can leave me feeling incredibly bored. My usual, figure-it-out-as-you-go cooking method is fun, but can get tiresome because if you’re always starting with the same ingredients, it’s challenging to end up with a different result. Even with the lovely variety of farmers market additions, the repetition of the same old healthy, or somewhat healthy foods every week can get old. I try to spice things up by buying items that, although not always the healthiest options, lend inspiration to some creativity.
This week the secret boredom-ending weapon was shrimp. Nothing special really, but it was on sale and it’s a “meat” I’m comfortable with. It’s not something I would usually buy, but with just about any protein I know I can usually add whatever vegetables are on hand to make a decent stir fry. Once back home with my latest inspiration I stuck my nose in the refrigerator to see what farmers market purchases could turn my shrimp in to something tasty, colorful, and maybe even healthy. This week it was kale and garlic. The cupboard yielded canned tomatoes and roasted red peppers to add some zest to the overall flavor.
I’m going to assume that anyone reading this knows how to make spaghetti and can tackle that part of the dish without instruction. I started by chopping the kale as thinly as I could be bothered to and threw it in to saute with some olive oil. Followed by roughly chopped garlic and then the peppers, also chopped somewhat roughly but not too large.
Next I added a can of chopped stewed tomatoes and some basil. I let these items merge flavors for a bit, then added about a pound of shrimp, washed but whole. I stirred things up and covered it all for about five minutes, popping in a couple times to stir again and to make sure the shrimp were getting evenly cooked. Another can of chopped stewed tomatoes was added to balance out the overall density and texture.
Drain the pasta and pile the stir fry on top of a good portion in a large bowl and serve. In retrospect, I would have peeled the shrimp before adding it to the stir fry, since it was so steaming hot in this dish we were nearly burning our fingers with eagerness to eat each one.