Concert week is arriving (with the sound of screeching brakes) so I thought I’d step away from music this week for a couple of things to be shared with people I like…the Blogmeister loves to experiment in the kitchen and these two attempts turned out tasty, give them a try.

There’s plenty of information out there about saving shrimp shells to make stock (or frying and eating them…not my thing) but I haven’t run into using them for a sauce. There’s a lot of flavor in there, why not use it? Here’s my take on it. Peel the shells off a pile of shrimp (don’t forget to de-vein them…it’s not a vein…it’s their digestive system…nasty) and toss ’em in a non-stick pan with a tab of butter and a little olive oil. Add about 1/4″ of water and saute the whole thing until the shells are pink and the water is nearly gone. Carefully remove all of the shrimp parts and add a little flour to create a roux as the base for a white wine garlic cream sauce (adjust the flour/butter amounts to get the consistency you’re looking for) and use the sauce with the cooked shrimp over pasta or spaghetti squash. The shells add a whole bunch of flavor to the roux and really make for a tasty sauce. Try it, you’ll like it.

Another cool flavor-inducer is to cook russet potatoes on the grill before using them for whatever you use them for. Cut the taters into 1/2″ discs (with or without the skin depending on what you’re going to use them for), roll ’em around in a little olive with salt and pepper and toss ’em right on the grill over medium-high heat. Turn them often until the flat sides of the disc are nice and brown with grill marks and the like and a fork slides in with just a little resistance (that means they’re done). The grilled outer layer becomes this interesting combination of savory and sweet and the flavor is really different. Serve hot with butter and garlic chives (or whatever your herb of choice is) or cool them and cube them as the base for a tater salad with a totally different taste. Yum.

Okay, out of the kitchen and back to the singing…