Cooking Made Lazy: I Took an Easy Recipe and Made It Easier.
I don’t like eating dinner. I like my bigger, main meal of the day to be lunch. But I also don’t want to like, make lunch. I want to eat well, but also have it be quick and easy. So! Here’s what I have for lunch about 5 days a week. The recipe is astonishingly simple, and I have made it even simpler. It’s hot, you don’t want to cook, you don’t want to leave your house, and you want to eat a vegetable, a protein, and all that nonsense (that it’s really nonsense, but you know what I mean), and this is my current favorite solution.
This is the recipe I use, but like I said, I’ve streamlined it. AND it was a super simple recipe to begin with. So, now that you can see the real thing, let me walk you through the ultra lazy version.
First off! Prep your shrimps! I buy the big bag of frozen (peeled and deveined, but tails still on) shrimp at Costco. Sometimes I have to pick up shrimp elsewhere and it only really reminds me what a great deal this Costco shrimp is, so get that one if you can. These shrimp are big, and they’re going to end up in little taco shells, so I cut their tails off and then cut the shrimp at least in half. Throw all your shrimp pieces in a big bowl Then you collect your spices. You’ll need:
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
I made this recipe approximately 40 times before I realized I could make a huge batch of these spices mixed together and make this easy recipe EVEN EASIER. So make it once or twice, but then just batch mix your spices. I’m also investigating if you could just use Old Bay, and while I don’t think it would be BAD (Old Bay can only improve something), it’s not going to give you that fajita flavor that the cumin and chili powder add. I’ve also tried using Nando’s Peri Peri sauce on the shrimp and it wasn’t great.
Drizzle a bit of olive oil on your shrimp and then toss in the spices (I mix then together in a little bowl first so you don’t get one shrimp that’s covered in paprika, etc). I mix it up with my hands, and then spread them out on a baking sheet. I have experimented with lining the sheet with parchment paper or foil but now I just throw them on. I have a dishwasher, life is carefree. Pop your shrimp sheet in a 425 degree oven for 8-12 minutes.
OH! I forgot this is a digression from the original recipe. The actual recipe, being for fajitas, has you slice up some bell peppers and onions into strips and but them on the pan as well. I did this, for awhile, but now I just do the shrimp and add fresh peppers later (I don’t like onions). So add peps, and onions if you’re nasty, to your pan. Or don’t!
Once your shrimp are done, pull that pan out and let them rest while you heat up some tortillas. You’ll want to eat some shrimp tacos now, OBVS, but heres’ the other great thing about this recipe: You can stick the leftovers in the fridge for tomorrow. Or, in my case, the rest of the whole dang week. I have a container of these spicy shrimp in my fridge at all times.
When it’s lunchtime, I take out some tortillas and get them warming in a skillet while I make a sort of taco mise en place situation. I put some shredded cheese in a little pinch pot, cut up some peppers, and get a container of guacamole. SIDENOTE: Costco sells individual containers of guacamole and it has changed my life. I used to get the tubes of guac they sell at Trader Joe’s, which are fine, but Costco’s is SO much better. I also put a bottle of Cholula on the table, because it, like Old Bay, can only improve things. Once my tortillas are heated, I take my shrimp that I’ve pre-cooked and stored in the fridge and throw some of them in the pan. I just let them warm up and get that nice spice coating even crispier and then they join their friends on the plate. The whole thing takes mere minutes and you get a plate of make-your-own-tacos. It’s perfect for when you want a nice lunch, but you’re at home alone on your laptop. This recipe could also easily be multiplied to create a taco buffet for your family and friends.