Next week I’ll be heading into the final term of the school year. Typically known as the term that you miss if you blink. Although it’s long, it feels like it goes by in a flash – the key to getting everything done that you need to is being organized. And not just at work. The longer days (yay for more sunlight!) mean I often lose track of the time after work then find myself with dinner uncooked when it’s nearly time to eat so I’m always on the lookout for quick and easy dinner solutions that don’t require a trip to the supermarket for ingredients. Also high on my priority list is finding meals that don’t use every pot and pan in my cupboard (those are reserved for the weekend) because, let’s face it – who wants to wash dishes late at night or first thing the next morning (no, I don’t have a dishwasher). I often fall back on stir-fry type dishes because they are quick and easy and can accommodate any number of bits and pieces on hand in the fridge but I’ll admit it can get boring making the same thing too often.
For this month’s Kraft Canada #whatscooking assignment, I investigated some “one skillet” meals to find some new ideas and I was pleased to find some different dishes than my usual stir fry. Based on Cheesy Shrimp and Rice, my version of the dish uses leftover rice and only a handful of other ingredients which we nearly always have on hand, making for a quick and easy meal that’s a little different than a mish-mash of stir-fried veggies and rice.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 shallots, minced
- 6 green onions finely sliced
- 1lb (454g) frozen large shrimp , thawed, peeled and deveined
- 2 cups 25% less-sodium chicken broth
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- 125g (1/2 a 250g tub) Philadelphia Light Cream Cheese Spread
- about 2 cups leftover cooked white rice
- Heat the oil in skillet on medium-high heat.
- Add the shallots and green onions and sautée until soft, but not browning.
- Add the shrimp and cook for approximately 3-4 minutes on each side until the shrimp turn pink.
- Remove shrimp and onion-shallot mixture from the skillet and cover to keep warm.
- Increase the heat to high, add the broth and bring to a boil.
- Add the broccoli florets and cook until desired level of "doneness" is achieved (I like my broccoli a little 'al dente' as opposed to too soft, especially in a dish like this).
- Turn down the heat to low and add the cream cheese.
- Stir until it is mostly combined then add the rice, cooking for about a minute, just to heat through.
- Remove from heat and stir through the shrimp and onion-shallot mixture.
Verdict? This was a nice surprise actually – I wasn’t sure about using leftover rice but since I always have it on hand, it made more sense to use it than to wait for a batch of rice to cook up first. I had hoped it wouldn’t taste like a failed risotto but it didn’t at all – the sharpness of the cream cheese works well with the sweetness of the shrimp and if you leave your broccoli a little al dente, it will provide a nice crunchy texture against the creamy rice. I’ll definitely be remembering this on nights when I don’t have much time to get dinner on the table and, like a stir-fry it lends itself to all sorts of interpretations re: add-ins etc.
Disclosure: As a Kraft Canada #whatscooking contributor, I receive compensation for writing these posts, however, all opinions are 100% my own.