Happy Monday everyone – I can’t wait to show you what I had for dessert on Saturday night (and, cough, lunch on Sunday afternoon #noregrets) DIRT CAKE! Not just any Dirt Cake – gluten-free, dairy-free, homemade-pudding-containing, genuine, bonafide (did I get all of them?) DIRT. CAKE. Mmmm!
We finally wrapped up all the festivities surrounding my birthday this weekend (it was on the 5th,) as it was the first time all the family was able to come together. My Mom made all my favorites for dinner on Saturday night including Crock Pot Baked Beans, brats, fruit salad, and, as I mentioned, Dirt Cake! I’m not sure if DC is a Midwestern thing, but it’s basically layers of cheesecakey-vanilla pudding and pulverized Oreos, aka one of the best desserts on the planet and a dish my brothers and I grew up eating every single summer. It is one of my all time favorites.
My Mom’s never been able to find gluten-free/dairy-free pudding mix (Lincoln and my nephews are allergic to dairy,) so she made her own, tracked down GF/DF “Oreos” and layered this beauty up for my birthday “cake”. It was phenooooomenal. Like I said, I took the leftovers home and ate them for lunch on Sunday. Happy birthday to me, indeed! ;)
Not only were my one of my brothers and his family able to join us, but my Aunt and Uncle were in town from Ohio visiting too. So great being able to see them and for my uncle to meet Lincoln, my niece and littlest nephew for the first time!
Other than that, Ben and I filled our weekend with house projects, as we’ve got a to-do list a mile long that we’re working hard to complete before baby boy makes his arrival in October (including what feels like replacing every faucet in the house. #ugh #plumbing.) Ben worked on staining the back deck while I gave our front door trim a paint refresher on Saturday afternoon, then on Sunday I got to go to Homegoods…ALONE!!!….to search for new decor for our family room built-ins.
If I had to pick out 3 things I’m not even remotely talented at, it would be interior decorating, fashion, and let’s just put interior decorating down again because I am that bad at it. I can see a picture say, “yes, I like that!” but when it comes to recreating said picture, it’s not happening without some major help.
That said, one item on my to-do list is to give our main level a cohesive theme. Prior to last week it was travel, mixed with boho, classic, and cape cod. And not in the adorable “Friends” apartment way where every chair was mismatched yet it somehow registered as genius. Anyway, I’ve got my sights set on cape cod(ish)-style decor so last week my Mom and I hung these prints in the hallway, picked out this color to paint a few walls, and I snagged a few neutral tone + blue accent pieces from Homegoods to unify our family room builtins (there’s a fireplace between these.) Like I said, I am by NO means a decorator and this is still a work in progress – the top right shelf (topiary especially) and lemon plate are both making me twitchy though we got the plate in Italy so I’m willing to overlook the mismatching colors, and I’d prefer to not have the books out but Ben really wanted them there – but this color palette + arrangement is already making me 1,000x happier than the darker colors that were here before.
Oh man, I could go on and on, but I’ll zip it because I have a stellar recipe I want to share with you today!
Shrimp Boil Soup, y’all!
Ok, ok, ok. I know it’s summertime. And this week in particular, at least around here, is supposed to be sizzling. But I’m so excited about this recipe that I couldn’t wait another couple of months to share it. Plus, despite being a soup recipe, this dish is really light, so I’m doing eeeeet! Get your spoons ready to dip into this low-country boil in a bowl!
In case you missed it, Ben made us an epic shrimp and crab boil this past 4th of July weekend. Oddly (like extremely, outrageous, oddly) enough, I had this soup recipe on the calendar to share before he even announced his plans. Let me be clear – we live in Iowa. Land of no low-country boils, yet we both had roughly the same idea at the same exact time. Weee-ird! Anyway, not important. What IS important is that no matter where you live, you can have the taste of a low-country shrimp boil at home with this fresh and fantastic soup recipe that’s full of flavor and spice.
Spicy andouille sausage (sub kielbasa if you’re sensitive to spice and/or serving to kiddos,) is sauted with fresh sweet corn and Old Bay seasoning then simmered with creamy red potatoes and tender shrimp before being ladled into bowls and topped with a drizzle of bright lemon juice. While yes, this is a soup recipe, it’s light, brothy, and healthy, so it definitely didn’t feel out of place at the summer dinner table. Full of vegetables and protein, it’s a filling meal in one, too. I can’t wait for you to try it!
Start by slicing 9oz andouille sausage into 1/4” rings. If you cut them any thinner they could get rubbery during the cooking process. I am THRILLED to have found this Aidells andouille sausage at the grocery store recently. We love their meatballs, lunch meats, and chicken sausage because they’re gluten-free and have great ingredient lists, and this product is no different. Zero funky stuff and awesome, spicy flavor! That said, if you are sensitive to spice and/or want to serve this soup to kids, swap the andouille for mild kielbasa sausage. The soup will be just as delish.
Add the sausage and 1 chopped shallot to 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Saute until the sausage begins to brown then add the kernels from 2 ears sweet corn (about 1-1/2 cups) and saute for an additional 2 minutes to slightly soften the corn.
Next add 2-1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning and 5 cups gluten-free chicken broth. Turn the heat up to high to bring the soup to a boil then add 2 cups (about 12oz) chopped red potatoes. Lower the heat to medium then simmer until the potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes.
Last step is to add 3/4lb (12oz) 51/70 count raw, peeled shrimp. FYI this size of shrimp rarely comes pre-deveined, because it usually doesn’t need it, though if you see a few shrimp that need cleaned, go ahead and do that before adding to the soup pot.
Remove the pot from the heat then place a lid on top and let the heat of the broth cook the shrimp through. This will result in super tender shrimp vs overcooked, rubbery shrimp. Heavenly, I’m telling you! Once the shrimp is cooked through, taste then add up to 1/2 teaspoon more Old Bay if needed.
Ladle the soup into bowls then top with chopped chives or parsley for a little color, and serve with lemon wedges so everyone can add as much as they like – it really adds to the flavor of each bowl. Also know that this soup is fantastic ladled over a scoop of cooked white rice, gumbo-style. However you serve it, I know you’re going to love it! Enjoy!
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Shrimp Boil Soup
Shrimp Boil Soup has all the flavor of a low-country boil but is made right on the stove top. This quick cooking, gluten-free soup recipe is spicy, savory, and so satisfying.
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 9oz andouille sausage, sliced into 1/4" coins (I used Aidells)
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 2 ears sweet corn, kernels cut from cob (1-1/2 cups)
- 2-1/2 - 3 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
- 5 cups gluten-free chicken broth
- 2 cups chopped red potatoes (about 12oz)
- 3/4lb (12oz) 51/60 shrimp, peeled
- lemon wedges
- Heat oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add sausage and shallots then saute until sausage begins to brown, 3-4 minutes. Add sweet corn then saute for 2 minutes. Sprinkle in 2-1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning then saute for 30 more seconds.
- Add chicken broth then turn heat up to high and bring to a boil. Add potatoes then turn heat down to medium and simmer until potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes. Add shrimp then remove pot from heat, place a lid on top, and let shrimp cook through, 3-4 minutes. Taste then add up to 1/2 teaspoon more Old Bay if needed then ladle into bowls and serve with lemon wedges.
- If you are sensitive to spice, swap andouille sausage for mild kielbasa sausage.
- This soup is great served over a scoop of cooked white rice.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.