Sunday, May 30, 2010

Shrimp Herb Fettuccine Alfredo and Cookies 'n' Zing Cheesecake

These dishes were so yummy :)  My favorite was the Shrimp Alfredo. I cannot stand shrimp, it seriously makes me gag. But after making this dish today, I realized that the reason why I hate shrimp so much is because of the way it is cooked. Most people overcook it so it ends up having a chewy/sponge-like texture...bleh. The key is to cook the shrimp only until it is slightly white and pink, (but still has a little transparency), about 3 minutes, and then add the hot alfredo sauce to it. It makes all the difference in the world. For the Cookies 'n' Zing Cheesecake, it was really tasty and had an assortment of flavors and textures. But I realized something, I do not like chocolate. I love fruity things, but not rich chocolate. So if you like chocolate, try this cheesecake because it is delish.

Shrimp Herb Fettuccine Alfredo
1 pound fettuccine pasta
2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
basil and oregano
1 pound raw shrimp (it should be gray, not pink!)
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1 teaspoon minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste
basil and oregano
1 Tablespoon cornstarch mixed in 1 Tablespoon water (may be optional) 
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
*Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute shrimp, garlic, and herbs in butter for about 2-3 minutes. In a saucepan, whisk together cream, milk, and sour cream. Bring to a small boil, slowly whisk in cheeses. Reduce heat and continue to stir for about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, salt and pepper, and basil and oregano. Stir until cheeses are melted. You may need to whisk in cornstarch mixture if the sauce does not thicken completely. (I added the cornstarch mixture because I am hate waiting for a sauce to thicken.) When sauce has thickened, pour into skillet full of shrimp. Stir in parsley and cook for about 1 additional minute. Serve over pasta.

Cookies 'n' Zing Cheesecake
2 cups chocolate sandwich cookie crumbs
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 pounds cream cheese, softened
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 Tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups chocolate sandwich cookie pieces
16 ounces sour cream
1/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*Combine 2 cups cookie crumbs, melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a bowl; firmly press evenly onto bottom of a 10-inch spring-form pan. (Note: only use the wafer part of the cookie if using Oreos, the cream filling makes the crust soggy.) Bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes; set aside and cool. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually mix in 1 1/4 cups sugar, 1/3 cup cream, flour, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Pour 1/3 of batter into prepared pan. Top with 1 1/2 cups cookie pieces. Pour in remaining batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove cake from oven. Combine sour cream, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Spread evenly on cheesecake. Continue baking for 7 minutes. Turn oven off and leave in oven for 30 minutes. Remove cheesecake and let cool completely on a wire rack. When cheesecake is cooled, remove ring from spring-form pan. (Note: run a knife along edge of ring before removing.) Combine 1 cup cream and chocolate chips in a saucepan. (I would recommend using milk chocolate chips or white chocolate chips. For me, the semisweet chocolate chips made the cheesecake way too rich.) Stir over low heat or until chocolate melts, and then stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Pour mixture over cheesecake while still warm. Refrigerate until serving time. (This should be about 4-6 hours.) Remove 1/2 hour before serving, and enjoy!

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