Light and summery shrimp fajita bowls with cilantro-lime rice. Plus, a few other tasty ideas from my recent cooking spree…
Shrimp Fajita Bowls
I’ve been sorting through old recipes buried deep in the archives of this site. Most are posts I wrote eight years ago, which somehow seems like another lifetime and I guess in some ways it was. And, as is the case with old stuff, many of those posts need some updates. So, my cooking spree started with a spicy sweet corn relish that I made last Friday. It’s an easy recipe, packed full of summer produce, that needs some time on the stove and a little more time in the fridge before it’s ready to be scooped up with chips. Next, I revisited a roasted garlic pesto that I first tossed with hot pasta and then, a day later, I smeared on a sandwich.
A couple nights later, I made Julie Child’s bechamel sauce from the iconic Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I’ve made bechamel a thousand times, but this was Julia’s bechamel and so I felt classic and special as I stood at the stove with a whisk in hand. Once the flour, butter, and milk melted into a creamy sauce I stirred in the last of the pesto and spooned it over pan-seared chicken. I’m not sure Mrs. Child would have approved, but it was a delicious Italy-meets-France dinner that night.
Yesterday I roasted cherry tomatoes until they burst and cooked them with onion, garlic, and fresh basil before whizzing it all in the blender. It’s a simple tomato sauce that I used to make eggs in purgatory for breakfast this morning. And this afternoon, I sat at my desk with every intention to tell you about these shrimp fajita bowls, but distraction set in and I made homemade peanut butter cups from Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It: And Other Cooking Projects instead. Many moons ago I tagged the recipe with a post it, shelved the book, and sort of forgot about it until today for some reason. So, instead of writing, I melted chocolate and I gave the recipe a try. Once set they keep for up to two weeks, but I’m not sure the 10 rich chocolate cups with creamy peanut butter centers sitting on my counter will last that long. They’re already disappearing.
La, la, la. I think homemade peanut butter cups are a new form of procrastination.
So now I’m here, much later than planned, to tell you about these shrimp fajita bowls. Traditional fajitas are served up on a hot platter with a pile of warm tortillas, but earlier this week I took some liberties and instead of tortillas I piled seasoned shrimp on a bed of cilantro-lime rice with plenty of bell peppers and red onion alongside. It’s not a complete overhaul, but a small twist on what you might order at your local Mexican restaurant.
And let’s talk about the shrimp. If you can find fresh shrimp, by all means, use it. But, beware, the “fresh” shrimp at the mainstream grocery store probably arrived frozen and then were thawed for display, so ask if you’re not sure and be sure to peel and devein them first. I keep frozen shrimp on hand because most of the work is done and all I have to do is thaw them in cold water and then pat them dry before cooking. From there it’s just a simple toss in the seasonings and the shrimp are ready for a quick sizzle in a hot pan.
The end result is light on calories, so feel free to add a scoop of guacamole or a dollop of sour cream (something I didn’t do and now, as I write this, I am kicking myself for my short-sightedness). An ice-cold margarita to sip on would be great, too (again, what was I thinking?).
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For the Rice
- Zest from 1/2 a lime
- Juice from 1 whole lime
- 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- Long grain white rice
For the Vegetables
- 1/2 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
- 2 medium bell peppers, sliced
- 1/4 red onion, sliced
For the Shrimp
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 8 ounces shrimp, peeled and deveined
- Chopped cilantro
- Lime wedges
- Combine the zest, lime juice, cilantro, and salt in a small saucepan. Following the rice package instructions, add enough rice and water for two servings. Cook according to package instructions until the rice is tender (about twenty minutes or so).
- Mix all of the spices for the shrimp in a medium bowl. Add the shrimp and toss to coat the shrimp.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sliced vegetables and cook, stirring frequently, until they soften. Remove from the pan. Reduce the heat to medium and add the shrimp to the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side.
- Divided the cooked rice between two bowls. Top with the peppers, onion, and shrimp. Garnish with chopped cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice.
- Calories: 353
- Sugar: 7.9g
- Sodium: 1095.9mg
- Fat: 5.3g
- Carbohydrates: 49.7g
- Fiber: 5.6g
- Protein: 28.3g