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Spontaneity and BlogHer Food (Recipe – BBQ Shrimp)

When I was a Freshman in high school, I woke up on a dreary, wintery Kansas Saturday, came downstairs to the kitchen table and discovered a note left from my parents that said “We went to find the sunshine… be back on Monday”. Off the point of my post, my parents obviously had a lot of trust in me to not throw any wild parties while they were gone. I was the youngest of five kids, so I think by the time I was in high school, they were kind of ready to have some time not devoted to being parents.

Mom and Dad ended up driving as far as Texas that weekend, literally stopping when the gray clouds turned white and the sunshine beamed through the car windows.

That note and the sentiment of spontaneity that came with it has always struck a chord with me. You see… my parents have always been spontaneous. Maybe a little too spontaneous at times (we rarely went car shopping without coming home with a new car!). They had (and still have) a tendency to live in the moment and do what feels right, right then.

I think that deep down I have a spontaneous bone somewhere… it is just buried right now under the weight of parenting and responsibility. I saw a glimpse of my spontaneous self this past week though when I decided to buy a ticket to BlogHer Food and plan a trip to San Francisco with very little time to plan much of anything. And yes… calling this spontaneous might be stretching it to some of you, but a week out is considered spontaneous in my book!

I had a great time at the BlogHer conference in Chicago this summer, but I have a feeling that BlogHer food will be exactly what I’m looking for. A smaller, less overwhelming collection of bloggers, all who have the same keen interest in the culinary world that I do. I can’t wait to meet those of you who will be there!

Shrimp is one of those foods that you can be spontaneous about. It is so quick to make up a delicious meal using shrimp. This BBQ Shrimp recipe from a pullout page in Gourmet Magazine is one of the best shrimp recipes we’ve tasted. It cooks up in just a few minutes, leaving plenty of time for other spontaneous activities in your day.

BBQ Shrimp by Chef Brian D Smith

  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/8 t. Oregano
  • 1/4 t. Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 t. Black Pepper
  • 1/8 t. Onion Powder
  • 1/16 t. White Pepper
  • 1/8 t. Paprika
  • 1/16 t. Red Pepper
  • 1/8 t. Thyme
  • 1 T. black pepper
  • 1/2 t. rosemary
  • 1/4 c. butter
  • 4 oz. beer
  • 1 T. fresh garlic
  • 2 oz. Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 lbs. Large Shrimp (shell on) (I used medium, tail-on shrimp)

Make Seasoning – Mix together all of the dry spices

Make BBQ Shrimp – Heat butter in a large skillet over moderate heat until foam subsides. Add the shrimp, garlic, seasoning mixture, beer, and Worcestershire sauce and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Serve with lots of fresh French bread to soak up all the sauce.

Curious about BlogHer Food? Here are some other posts from food bloggers getting ready to journey to San Francisco:

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  1. I remember that, too. When do you go?

  2. great post! love the story :)
    .-= nora@ffr´s last blog ..Dauphinoise Potatoes =-.

  3. I loved that story about your parents — it gave me hope that it’s still possible to have spontaneity in life after you decide to have kids, which I sometimes worry about. I hope you will tell more stories like that :) Have fun at the BlogHer Food conference. Unfortunately I couldn’t go, but the next best thing would be hearing your impressions — and those of other attendees — on how it went and what you learned.
    .-= Asha´s last blog ..Tomato harvest roundup =-.

  4. San Francisco is so close to our old home of San Jose, it wouldn’t have taken us very long between making up our minds to go to BlogHer Food and actually going. But now that we’re here in Kuching, Malaysia, all we can do is wish all the best to those who are there. Have a great foodie time!
    .-= Nate´s last blog ..Stop, Blog Thief! =-.

  5. It was so good to see you (and Leah) again! A nice surprise that you wound up coming at the last minute. I liked this so much better than BlogHer – but think that next year it needs to be two days!

    Safe travels home!
    .-= maris´s last blog ..Worknight Dinner Recipe: Stuffed Baked Acorn Squash =-.

  6. The shrimp looks so good. I just made a cajun shrimp platter for a Mardi Gras party last week. Yummy!
    .-= Melody @ Party Cupcake Ideas´s last blog ..Minnie Mouse Disney Cupcakes =-.

  7. What a nice post. It’s true that being spontaneous has great rewards! It was great meeting you at BlogHer Food 09~hope to see you again next year!
    .-= Rebecca´s last blog ..Foodbuzz Blog Awards =-.

  8. my parents used to tell me of when they were first married they would saute shrimp in garlic butter and use toothpics to eat.. have a little sherry on the side…. simple times before we were all in school :)
    I live in Texas and my parents used to throw us in the car and drive like crazy after picking us up from school to see the coast..
    when Jeff and I were first married we continued this tradition.. it was my “mecca” when I would have a crazy week teaching.. lol! now.. things are full of babies.. not so many road trips.. perhaps when our kids are a little older :)
    Happy cooking!
    .-= AnneMarieZ´s last blog ..big boy = big toy =-.

  9. Jealous that you got to go!
    Shrimp look wonderful.
    .-= peabody´s last blog ..Life is like a bowl of cupcakes… =-.

  10. Oh Yum, love shrimp dishes!

  11. I would have loved to attend BlogHer Food. I’m still regretting not going. That said, I will definitely be there next year! If you really want to be spontaneous, come to Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Mexico the week of January 23rd, 2010. Janice and I will be doing a few cooking classes out there … as well as pampering ourselves and working out a lot.
    BTW, your shrimp recipe looks amazing (just wish my oldest son wasn’t allergic)…
    .-= Liz´s last blog ..Crock-Pot Giveaway =-.

  12. Kristen,

    I’m so glad you gave in to spontenaity and came! Not only because I got some excellent cuddle time with darling Leah, but also because it was so lovely to meet you.
    .-= Kate @ Savour Fare´s last blog ..Tacos Por Favor — Shredded Chicken Tacos with Tomatillo Sauce =-.

  13. Kristen, glad you decided to be spontaneous! It was nice finally meeting you at BlogHer Food, and Leah is just the cutest thing ever.
    .-= Jackie´s last blog ..San Francisco Through My Foodie Eyes =-.

  14. I rely heavily on shrimp when I can’t think of anything to make for dinner. All my shrimp recipes are quick and easy and almost always healthy. Thanks for adding another to my repertoire!

    And thanks for introducing us to your parents. I’ve read a couple of posts from your my mom’s blog and will return when I have more time. I wonder if I can convince my mom to do the same…
    .-= Les in NE´s last blog ..Mailbox Monday =-.

  15. Wow! That photo just POPs off the screen. Beautiful! I wish I could have gone to BlogHer Food. Hope you had a blast.
    .-= Deanna´s last blog ..Germany and London – 2009 =-.

  16. I would call that spontaneous! I’m so sad that I didn’t get to go to Blogher Food. =( Kristen, where are you located?
    .-= Jessica Lee Binder´s last blog ..Eleven =-.


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