When was the last time you kept aside your hectic schedule to host friends over for a meal! Sometimes the best way to unwind is just being surrounded in conversations with your friends over a platter of food and a pitcher cocktails to go around the room. So whether you're looking at a breezy cookout or a quiet dine-in, we have put together an array of recipes to get chef'd and just about enough to tide you over a weekend get together:
1. Grilled Shrimps
When it comes to grilling, we never shrimp out! Here's a simple one for seafood lovers.
- 1 kg cleaned shrimp
- 1 large clove garlic
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Salt as per taste
- 8 wedges lemon, for garnish
Preheat grill for medium heat. Add crushed garlic, cayenne pepper, salt, paprika in a bowl. Then add a mix of olive oil and lemon juice, stir to make a paste. Coat the shrimp with paste (ensure the coating is even). Lightly oil grill grate and start cooking the shrimp. About 3 minutes per side, or until they are opaque. Now transfer this to a serving dish, add a dash of lemon juice, garnish with wedges and serve.
2. The Nutty Cocktail
This is one of the easiest cocktails you can whip up for cocktail o’clock.
- 45ml Black & White whisky
- 2 bar spoons almond/coconut syrup
- 2 dash bitters
- 1-piece orange twist, for garnish
Fill a tall glass with good quality ice cubes.
Add all ingredients, stir until chilled.
Pour into a tumbler over an ice sphere.
Garnish with an orange twist.
(Tip: For a pitcher which serves 4, just quadruple each measure)
3. Chicken Stir-Fry
Take a cue from the name of the dish and you’ll be able to guess how quick it is to prep this hearty meal. Small pieces of chicken combined with fresh veggies and dazzled with teriyaki sauce on top. What’s not to love?
- 450gms Chicken Breasts, boneless and skinless
- 12 Mushrooms, sliced
- 3 Carrots, peeled and julienned
- 115gms Green Beans, diced
- 1head Broccoli stems removed
- 2 Garlic Cloves, finely minced
- 2tbsps Dark Sesame Oil, divided
- 2 to 3tbsps Teriyaki Sauce
Heat 1tbsp oil in a pan over medium heat. Add garlic and stir. Now, put the chicken in the pan and cook it for 4 minutes until it gets brown on each side. Once done, remove the chicken from the pan, slice into strips and keep it aside. Heat the remaining oil in a wok over high heat. Add all the veggies and teriyaki sauce into it and stir-fry till the veggies begin to soften. Next, add the chicken strips to the wok and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve hot! Wasn’t that easy to prepare?
4. 5-Ingredient Pasta Salad
Everyone loves pasta. Yes or YAAASS? This can be an ideal recipe for the whole family. Super delicious, full of flavours and not too much mehnat. Win-win in every department, I must say.
- 450gms Whole Wheat Pasta
- 340gms Roasted Red Peppers drained and roughly chopped
- 170gms Basil Pesto
- 1 Ball Fresh Mozzarella Cheese, diced
- 3 Handfuls Fresh Arugula
Boil the whole wheat pasta in a large stockpot filled with salted boiling water al dente, as per the package instructions. Drain the pasta and then rinse it for approximately 20 to 30 seconds under cold water. Now, take a large bowl and toss the pasta with the remaining ingredients and mix well. Tada! Get ready to dig in.
5. Easy Baked Fish Fillets
Looking for a simple fish dinner which can be made using available ingredients in your pantry? This recipe is a clear winner especially for last-minute dinners with very little prep involved.
- 700gms White Fish Fillets
- Olive Oil, to grease
- 1tbsp Fresh Lime Juice
- 1tbsp Light Mayonnaise
- 1/8tsp Onion Powder
- 1/8tsp Black Pepper
- 1/2cup Fresh Breadcrumbs
- 1 ½ tbsps. Butter
- 2tbsps Fresh Parsley, chopped
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat an 11x7 –inch baking dish with olive oil and place the fish fillets inside. Combine onion powder, pepper, mayonnaise and lime juice in a small bowl and spread over the fish. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top and drizzle with butter. Bake for 25 minutes at 425 degrees or until the fish flakes easily as you test it with a fork. Finish the recipe by sprinkling some parsley on top. Wasn’t that hassle-free?