Savory Summer Seafood Suppers

By admin
July 09, 2013

By Holly Clegg

Beach vacations, outdoor activities and ball games make the kitchen one of the last places you want to spend extra time during the summer months. Fortunately for us, here in the Gulf Coast region, we have access to an abundance of fresh seafood and local indigenous ingredients that can simplify those summer suppers. It’s easy to whip up a recipe with shrimp, crab, crawfish and oysters, with a freshness and flavor you cannot find anywhere else. With seafood as your main ingredient, you start out healthier, and when combined with a few “trim & terrific” tweaks, you can have a nutritious meal on the table in no time at all!

It is so important to understand the significance of our great Gulf Coast and the impact it makes, not just on the surrounding regions but everywhere. Did you know that 75% of all seafood harvested comes from the northern Gulf of Mexico? There is nothing like seafood delivered fresh from the great Gulf Coast fisherman.

I store unpeeled shrimp in individual gallon-size freezer plastic zip-top bags filled with water and stack them in the freezer to pull out for one of my favorite go-to last minute dinners, like Quick Lemon Basil Shrimp. When crawfish tails are in season, I also freeze them so we can enjoy my easy and healthy version of Crawfish Etouffee year round. Another mouth-watering dish, Crabmeat Angel Hair, has gourmet appeal with pantry-friendly ingredients.

When seafood is the star ingredient of a great summer meal you can expect rave reviews, and by following a few of my “trim & terrific” tips, you can have a time-friendly, healthy, and delicious meal in no time!


Need a quick and easy mouth-watering dish? Try Holly’s great recipe for Lemon Basil Shrimp and serve with rice, pasta, or alone for a light tasty dinner. Makes 4 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 1/2 pounds medium to large peeled shrimp

2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil leaves or 2 teaspoons dried basil leaves

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

2 tablespoons lemon juice

Salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF.

2. In an oblong, shallow, ovenproof dish, combine the olive oil and garlic. Heat in the oven 2–3 minutes, watching carefully so garlic does not brown.

3. Add the shrimp to the oil mixture and return to the oven. Bake for 4 minutes, stir shrimp, and continue cooking 4–6 minutes, depending on size of shrimp, or until shrimp are done.

4. Remove from oven and sprinkle with basil, parsley, and lemon juice. Season to taste.

Nutritional information per serving: Calories 193; Calories from fat (%) 37; Fat (g) 8; Saturated Fat (g) 1; Cholesterol (mg) 252; Sodium (mg) 291; Carbohydrate (g) 1; Dietary Fiber (g) 0; Sugars (g) 0; Protein (g) 27; Diabetic Exchanges: 4 lean meat


Holly’s easy to follow recipe for a popular Louisiana staple will quickly become part of your Cajun recipe repertoire. Serve over rice. Makes 4 (1-cup) servings

2 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 onion, chopped

1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 cup fat-free chicken broth

1 tablespoon paprika

1 pound crawfish tails, rinsed and drained

Salt and pepper to taste

1 bunch green onions, stems only, finely chopped

1. In a large nonstick skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, heat olive oil and stir in flour. Cook over medium heat until light brown, about 6–8 minutes, stirring constantly. Add onion, green pepper, and garlic. Sauté until tender, about 5 minutes.

2. Gradually add broth and stir until thickened. Add paprika and crawfish. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste.

3. Stir in green onions and cook for another few minutes before serving.

Nutritional information per serving: Calories 220; Calories from fat 36%; Fat 9 g; Saturated Fat 1 g; Cholesterol 155 mg; Sodium 217 mg; Carbohydrate 13 g; Dietary Fiber 4 g; Sugars 4 g; Protein 22 g; Diabetic Exchanges: 1 carbohydrate; 3 lean meat


Crabmeat and spinach pair up in Holly’s easy, exceptionally delicious light, creamy pasta dish. Makes 8 (1-cup) servings

8 ounces angel hair pasta

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 pound sliced mushrooms

1/2 cup chopped green onions

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 (12-ounce) can fat free evaporated skim milk

1 /3 cup white wine (or broth)

1 cup packed baby spinach leaves

1 pound back fin lump or white crabmeat, picked of shells

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese, optional

1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

2. In large nonstick skillet, heat butter and oil and sauté mushrooms, green onions, parsley, and garlic over medium heat about 5 minutes, or until tender.

3. In bowl, combine cornstarch with about 1/2 cup evaporated milk, and mix until smooth. Add to the pan and stir continuously.

4. Gradually add wine and remaining milk, stirring until mixture thickens. Reduce heat and add spinach and crabmeat, stirring until spinach is wilted. Season to taste.

5. Toss with pasta and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if desired. Terrific Tidbit: 12 cups uncooked spinach equals 2 cups cooked? That’s 12 cups of nutrients packed into 2!

Nutritional information per serving: Calories 252 kcal; Calories from fat (%) 16; Fat (g) 4; Saturated Fat (g) 1; Cholesterol (mg) 49; Sodium (mg) 290; Carbohydrate (g) 30; Dietary Fiber (g) 1; Total Sugars (g) 7; Protein (g) 21; Diabetic Exchanges: 11/2 starch; ½ fat-free skim milk; 2 lean meat

dig deeper

Check out Holly Clegg’s trim&TERRIFIC Gulf Coast Favorites for succulent recipes that are sure to please, from appetizer to dessert.

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