Side dish recipe

Coconut Shrimp with Sweet Chili Thai Sauce


  • 1 lb of large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of black pepper
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup of shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup of sweet chili sauce
  • 1 tbsp of sriracha sauce
  • 1 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp of rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp of honey
  • 1 tbsp of fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp of chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbsp of chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp of chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp of chopped fresh garlic
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (conventional) or 375°F (convection).
  2. In a bowl, mix the flour, salt, and black pepper.
  3. Using another bowl, whisk together the eggs.
  4. In a third bowl, mix the coconut and panko bread crumbs.
  5. Dip each shrimp in the flour mixture, then in the egg mixture, and finally in the coconut mixture, pressing the coconut mixture onto the shrimp to make sure it sticks.
  6. Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and cook until golden brown and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side.
  7. Transfer the shrimp to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 5-7 minutes until fully cooked.
  8. In a small saucepan, combine the sweet chili sauce, sriracha sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, lime juice, cilantro, basil, ginger, and garlic. Cook over medium heat until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes.
  9. Serve the coconut shrimp hot with the sweet chili Thai sauce on the side.

hors d’oeuvres to die for!

I really enjoy making this coconut shrimp with sweet chili Thai sauce recipe as an appetizer or hors d’oeuvre. My friend introduced me to this recipe after serving them at a cocktail party, and I nearly ate all of them. The combination of the crispy coconut coating and the sweet and spicy sauce is addictive.

Sometimes I like to add other herbs and spices to the sauce, such as lemongrass, mint, or coriander, depending on my mood. It’s a versatile recipe that allows for a lot of creativity.

Overall, this coconut shrimp with sweet chili Thai sauce is a crowd-pleaser and a great addition to any party or gathering.


If you want to dig a bit deeper on Coconut Shrimp or Sweet Chili Thai Sauce

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Smashed Potatos: no more instant taters!


  • 2 pounds of potatoes (preferably Russet or Yukon Gold)
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • 1/4 cup of unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper


  1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into quarters.
  2. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover them with cold water.
  3. Add a teaspoon of salt to the water and bring it to a boil over high heat.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer the potatoes for 15-20 minutes, or until they are tender when pierced with a fork.
  5. Drain the potatoes and return them to the pot.
  6. Add the butter and use a potato masher or a fork to mash the potatoes until they are mostly smooth.
  7. Pour in the milk and continue to mash until the potatoes are creamy and free of lumps.
  8. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste.

Note: If you want creamier mashed potatoes, you can add more milk or even a dollop of sour cream or cream cheese. You can also add herbs like chives or parsley for extra flavor.

A treatise on mashed potatoes

Mashed potatoes are absolutely great, but it seems like most people just make them boring or use instant mixes, which just doesn’t cut it for me. There’s something about homemade mashed potatoes that just hits different, you know? Plus, it’s such a classic and versatile side dish that can be served with almost any meal.

When I make mashed potatoes at home, I always start by using real potatoes – none of that instant stuff for me. I prefer using Yukon gold potatoes, which are buttery and have a creamy texture when mashed. I peel and chop them into even pieces so they cook evenly, then boil them until they’re tender but not mushy.

Once the potatoes are cooked, I drain them and add some butter and milk to get the right consistency. I like my mashed potatoes to be creamy and smooth, but not too runny. This is where you can get creative and add other ingredients to taste. Sometimes I’ll throw in some chopped chives or green onions for a pop of flavor, or even some roasted garlic for a more savory taste.

Overall, homemade mashed potatoes are a classic and delicious side dish that everyone should know how to make. It’s all about using real potatoes and adding your own unique twist to them to make them your own. So ditch the instant mixes and give homemade mashed potatoes a try – you won’t regret it!


Some further reading by the experts:

  1. “Garlic Mashed Potatoes Recipe” from Food Network:
  2. “Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole” from Delish:
  3. “Creamy Parmesan Mashed Potatoes” from Bon Appétit:

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German-style Potato Salad: The old country on your table!

  • 2 pounds red potatoes, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


  1. Boil the potatoes in a large pot of salted water until they are fork-tender, about 10-15 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until it is crispy, about 8-10 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set it aside on a paper towel-lined plate.
  3. In the same skillet, sauté the onion over medium heat until it is soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the white wine vinegar, water, Dijon mustard, sugar, salt, and black pepper until well combined.
  5. Add the vinegar mixture to the skillet with the onions and bring it to a simmer. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the mixture has thickened slightly.
  6. Add the cooked potatoes and chopped bacon to the skillet and stir until they are coated with the dressing. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes to heat everything through.
  7. Remove from heat and stir in the chopped parsley.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature.

A Little background:

When I first tasted this German-style potato salad recipe, I knew I had to learn how to make it. The recipe was given to me by a neighbor who had lived in Germany for several years, and I was immediately drawn to the unique blend of flavors and textures. The tangy dressing, combined with the soft potatoes and crispy bacon, was a revelation. I knew this would become one of my favorite recipes.

One of the things I love about German cuisine is the focus on hearty, comforting dishes that are perfect for sharing with friends and family. This potato salad recipe is no exception. It takes a bit of time to prepare, but the end result is well worth the effort. Plus, there’s something so satisfying about cooking a dish that requires a bit of patience and attention to detail.

When I serve this potato salad, I like to pair it with a cold German pilsner. There’s something about the crisp, refreshing taste of a good pilsner that complements the flavors of the salad perfectly. Two of my favorite German pilsners are Bitburger and Warsteiner. These beers have just the right balance of bitterness and sweetness to cut through the richness of the salad.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a dish that is both hearty and flavorful, this German-style potato salad recipe is definitely worth a try. With its unique blend of ingredients and flavors, it’s sure to impress even the most discerning palate. And don’t forget to pair it with a cold German pilsner for the ultimate dining experience!

Some further reading for those in love with German cuisine:

  1. “The Secrets of German Cooking” by The Spruce Eats –
  2. “How to Cook Like a German” by Taste of Home –
  3. “German Cooking 101: Traditional German Foods” by German Foods –
  4. “10 Tips for Cooking Authentic German Food” by Wide Open Eats –
  5. “How to Cook German Food at Home” by Culture Trip –
  6. “The Best Oktoberfest Celebrations in the US” by Travel + Leisure –

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Guilty Pleasure Mac and Cheese


  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cups shredded gouda cheese
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs or crushed cracker crumbs


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F for conventional ovens or 350°F for convection ovens.
  2. Cook the macaroni according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk until smooth. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Gradually add the milk and heavy cream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Continue cooking and whisking until the sauce thickens, about 5-7 minutes.
  5. Add the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, dried thyme, and dried oregano. Stir well to combine.
  6. Add the shredded gouda cheese to the sauce and stir until melted and smooth.
  7. Add the cooked macaroni to the sauce and stir until well coated.
  8. Pour the macaroni and cheese mixture into a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  9. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs or crushed cracker crumbs over the top of the macaroni and cheese.
  10. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.
  11. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before serving.

Church Mac and Cheese is the best!

Growing up, church picnics were a staple of my summers, and the one thing I always looked forward to was the mac and cheese. It was creamy, cheesy, and always had a crispy breadcrumb topping. It was like nothing I had ever tasted before, and to this day, I still crave it. That’s why I decided to create my own version of this classic dish.

This mac and cheese recipe is a labor of love. It’s not health food, and it’s not meant to be. It’s meant for friends and family gathered around a table, enjoying each other’s company and indulging in something extra tasty. It’s the perfect dish for a holiday dinner like Easter, or any special occasion where you want to treat your loved ones to something truly special.

The key to this recipe is the combination of cheeses. Gouda gives the mac and cheese a rich, smoky flavor, while cheddar adds a sharpness that balances out the creaminess of the sauce. I also like to add some herbs to the mix, like thyme and parsley, to give it an extra pop of flavor.

When it comes to the topping, I use a combination of breadcrumbs and cracker crumbs. The crumbs get toasted and crunchy in the oven, adding a nice texture to the dish. And of course, I always finish it off with a generous layer of melted gouda on top.

This recipe is my way of paying homage to those church picnics of my childhood. It’s a dish that brings people together and creates memories that last a lifetime. So the next time you’re looking for a comforting, indulgent meal to share with your loved ones, give this church mac and cheese a try. I promise it won’t disappoint.


Some homework for those who truly love Mac and Cheese!

  1. “The Best Macaroni and Cheese Recipe Ever” from Southern Living:
  2. “New York-Style Macaroni and Cheese” from Food Network:
  3. “Jalapeño Popper Mac and Cheese” from Delish:
  4. “Baked Mac and Cheese with Breadcrumbs” from Martha Stewart:

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