dessert · quesadillas · seafood · shrimp

Shrimp, Goat Cheese, Pineapple Quesadillas amd Chocolate Pudding

Tonight I had my beloved ex-coworker, Stephanie, over for a long over-due dinner. Since I want dinners with friends to be more about spending time with them and not stressing out in the kitchen (I did a little of that anyway), I choose recipes I’ve made before. I actually made a version of this approximately 10 days ago, but with mango. After a taste test, the pineapple is definitely the winner.
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On the side was a basic summer salad of cucumber, tomato, corn off the cob, fresh basil and lemon juice.
Inside the quesadilla:
goat cheese
shrimp (cooked in cayenne and lemon juice)
red onion
pineapple, chopped (and blotted dry!)
cilantro

For dessert, I had to stand up to Stephanie’s key lime pie cheesecake, so I made homemade chocolate pudding.
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This wasn’t exactly as easy as the boxed version, but it wasn’t impossible.
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I found the recipe on Cooking Light magazine online. I cut the recipe in half, but here is the full version.
Ingredients:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 cups 2% reduced-fat milk (I used 1% and everyone survived)
3 large egg yolks, lightly beaten (not easy to half)
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large saucepan. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Place egg yolks in a bowl. Gradually add hot milk mixture to egg yolks, stirring constantly. Return milk mixture to pan. Cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until mixture is thick, stirring constantly. Remove mixture from heat, and add chopped chocolate and vanilla extract, stirring until the chocolate melts. Spoon pudding into a small bowl. Place bowl in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until pudding is cool, stirring occasionally. Remove bowl from ice; cover and chill.IMG_0983
Since I did not have whipping cream on hand, I substituted Greek yogurt mixed with lemon zest, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Nice bite to it. Stephanie was kind enough to leave me the bottle of red, so now I get to enjoy it with some online TV!

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