Ceviche: Mexican Shrimp Cocktail

June 19, 2009 § Leave a comment

Are you planning a menu for a warm weekend? Maybe you’re wondering what to make for your next BBQ.

Here is a quick and easy recipe to one of my favorite dishes, Ceviche. Ceviche is a Mexican style fish cocktail, served cold.

Get creative. This ceviche recipe can be used with any kind of fish.The recipe below serves about four people or it can be served as a dip platter.

Add these items to your grocery list:

-1 lb. shrimp
-1 large tomato
-1 avocado

1 white onion
-7 ripe lemons

-1 bundle of cilantro

-1 cucumber

-1 pack of tostadas (hard tortillas that can be found by the tortillas)

Cooking instructions are easy, infact; you don’t even have to cook. Place the shrimp in a large bowl. If you’ve chosen jumbo shrimp, cut them into bite size pieces.

De-seed the tomato by slicing in half then squeezing its contents out gently. Dice the tomato into small quarter inch chunks.

Peel the cucumber. Then dice the cucumber, half of the white onion, and about ten sprigs of cilantro – all into quarter inch chunks.

Mix all chopped ingredients into the large bowl, leaving out the avocado. This will be the final addition.

Slice the lemons into halves and squeeze them into the bowl. I use a hand held citrus tool to empty out the lemons. Mix contents gently with a large spoon.

Now, slice the avocado in half by gently grazing the parameter of the avocado seed, top to bottom, with your knife. Separate the avocado halves and remove the seed.

Gently knife half inch squares into the avocado by grazing the interior of the skin, then remove the squares with a spoon. Very gently mix the avocado squares into the bowl. Include the avocado seed in the ceviche. This keeps the avocado green.

Refrigerate for about an hour and serve with tostadas on the side.

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Harlequin the Romance Novel Empire Celebrates a 60 Year Milestone

June 12, 2009 § Leave a comment

The empire made of romance and dirty secrets celebrates its 60th anniversary and I can’t wait to investigate. The book series was a staple in my mother’s collection of must-haves.

In 1949 the romance novel series was born in Canada as a way to keep Winnipeg’s Advocate Printers presses running. Their first publication was The Manatee, by U.S. author Nancy Bruff. It was sold for only 50 cents a copy.

The publisher had its share of turbulence with tax issues in the 50’s but the publisher also reaped a great amount of milestone successes with book sales. Harlequin’s unconventional placement in supermarkets and drugstores proved to be one of their most profitable marketing strategies, reaching their target audience – women. Studies show that women read more than men, hence their target market still being mainly female.

Harlequin took off in the 80’s with the distribution of their “Temptation” line which was tailored for younger women. This was the era of seductive, sexually suggestive cover illustrations, “bodice-ripping book covers” – the hallmark of the Harlequin brand.

Harlequin Enterprises went global in the 1990’s, translating their books into 19 languages and distributing in more than 100 countries. “Harlequin’s operating profit rose to $64.4 million in 1990.” Soaring book sales were not affected by the U.S. recession of the 90’s.

Harlequin Romance Novels are now the leader in romance publishing. 2009 marks their 60th year in business and has taken to the web with eharlequin.com. Users of their online books are repeat visitors perhaps taking a mid day voyage to paradise with Fabio via their free ebook downloads.

For more information about their sixtieth year anniversary go to http://www.harlequincelebrates.com or go to your local Borders or Barnes & Noble.

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