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My Review of Artin's Grill in Plano, TX

 Photo Credit: ShopsofLegacy.com

Photo Credit: ShopsofLegacy.com

Over the past year I had heard so many amazing things about Artin's Grill that I was excited to try it for myself. My family and I booked a reservation for Mother's Day and so I made sure to peruse the online menu (as I usually do) to see what they had to offer. I like to somewhat know what dish I'm leaning toward, so I don't take to long to decide once I'm actually in the restaurant. After so many years my hubby's patience has worn thin when it comes to my indecisiveness when ordering. LOL Hey what's a girl to do when there are so many great choices? LOL

Anyway, our first experience started with an excellent server and a delicious Calamari for our appetizer. The experience went downhill from there. I will not bore you with the details but I had decided not to return again.

I am just as quick to let management know when I have received excellent service as I am when I'm not happy. So after a pleasant conversation with the General Manager Bud Najjar, he invited me to come back once again.

Let me start by saying that Mr. Najjar was one of the nicest people I have come across in a long time. He was very welcoming and checked on us several times throughout our meal to make sure everything was to our liking. 

Since we had success with their Calamari the first time, we decided to order it again. Thank heavens it was just as tasty as I remembered!

 Crispy Calamari with Sweet Thai Chili Sauce

Crispy Calamari with Sweet Thai Chili Sauce

My husband decided to also try a cup of their chili as suggested by the server. He very much enjoyed it.

 Cup of Chili

Cup of Chili

For our main dishes I ordered the Redfish Pontchartrain and my hubby ordered the Prime Ribeye with a Twice Baked Potato. He also added 2 sea scallops that were cooked to perfection.

 Redfish Pontchartrain

Redfish Pontchartrain

 Prime Ribeye

Prime Ribeye

My dish came with blackened with crab, shrimp, garlic mashers and cajun cream sauce. The server suggested that I substitute the mashers for their white cheddar grits. I'm so glad I took his suggestion because that combined with all of the other flavors going on just worked! I love that the servers are so knowledgable about Artin's menu. I thoroughly enjoyed my meal as did my hubby.

I am so grateful that Mr. Najjar invited us back. This second visit more than made up for the first experience. The service was great, the atmosphere is inviting and the food was excellent. I would definitely recommend Artin's to anyone who is looking for a nice night out at an upscale restaurant. Kuddos!

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Bishop Jakes' Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings

So let me preface this post by saying that I have the utmost respect for Bishop Jakes. He is actually my Bishop and I've been a member of The Potters House since I was 19 years old. Needless to say that over the years Bishop has mentioned cooking numerous times in different messages and from the way he describes his methods, I was not concerned about this recipe.  I've always imagined in my head that he must be an amazing cook. 

Here is the recipe:

Number of serving: 4 to 6

Preparation time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2/3 finely chopped scallions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme, crumbled
  • 1  1/2  teaspoons salt
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 drops of Tabasco, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 18 (about 3  1/4 lbs) chicken wings 

Directions

To make marinade, puree all ingredients, except for chicken, in a blender or food processor. 

In a large shallow baking dish arrange the wings in a single layer and spoon the marinade over them, rubbing in well. ( You can wear rubber gloves if necessary) Cover and chill in the refrigerator. Marinate the wings for at least an hour or preferably overnight, turning them once.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Arrange wings in a single layer on an oiled rack set over a foil lined roasting pan. Spoon the marinade over them and bake the wings in the upper third of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until they are cooked through. 

I found a recipe for classic rice and peas (or beans as we would call them here in the US) to go along with the chicken. It also turned out really well.

Here is a pic of the finished product:

 Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings

Jamaican Jerk Chicken Wings

 

Thank goodness my hunch was right! These wings came out great. They were so flavorful and I know that if I had put them on the grill it would have taken them to the next level! If you like jerk chicken this recipe is a must. 

I must say that Bishop has definitely renewed my faith in these celebrity recipes that I've been testing. Many of them have been a little touch and go. LOL. Way to go Bishop!

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Tia Mowry's Shrimp Scampi with Cherry Tomatoes

This week on Celebrity Test Kitchen I tested Tia Mowry's Shrimp Scampi with Cherry Tomatoes. I was excited to test this one because I really liked the last dish I tried of hers. I personally love shrimp scampi and so does my hubby. So I thought that this dish could double as a wonderful meal for us since my broadcast of CTK fell on our anniversary. 

Here is the recipe:

INGREDIENTS

DIRECTIONS

Fill a high-sided skillet set over high heat with water. Add 3 tablespoons of the salt and bring to a boil. Add the pasta, and gently stir using tongs to make sure the pasta doesn't stick to itself. Cook the pasta for 12 to 14 minutes, and then drain. 

In a large skillet set over medium heat, add the oil. When hot, add the garlic, shallots, tomatoes and the remaining 1/2 tablespoon salt. Saute until the onions are translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the paprika and chile flakes, and saute for 1 to 2 minutes. Pour in the wine, scraping up any bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring to a simmer. Add the cream and return to a simmer for 1 minute. Add the shrimp and cover with the sauce. Cook, stirring to make sure the shrimp cooks through, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the chives and parsley, and toss to mix. Serve the shrimp and sauce over the pasta.

 

Here is a pic of my final dish. I think it came out beautiful. 

Whenever I've made shrimp scampi in the past, I have never added cherry tomatoes so this was a first for me. It was surprisingly a nice touch to the dish. I gave this dish a 7 out of 10 and here's why...

First of all I would have started with butter instead of olive oil.  Butter has lots of flavor which cannot be replaced by oil. The cup of wine was too overwhelming in this dish. I personally would have cut that down to half a cup and added a half a cup of chicken broth. Traditionally scampi has a bold garlic flavor so I would add a bit more, although the garlic could have just been masked by the wine. Lastly, I would have added some lemon to heighten the flavors. Overall this is a great start but it needed some slight changes. Of course like most pastas, this would pair great with a salad and some garlic bread.

My final thought is that I think I will stick with my own recipe for shrimp scampi. :) 

 

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