Experience the goodness of fall at P.F. Changs Apple Kale Quinoa Recipe

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of P.F. Chang’s. All opinions are 100% mine.

You may remember that my birthday was last week, but we stopped the celebration because it fell on a busy school night. I'm glad to say it was worth the wait. On Saturday we celebrated at PF Chang’s (Phillip’s Place Charlotte, NC location) with my mother and brother, who incidentally were in the hospital recently with bacterial pneumonia. Thanks for all the good wishes! He has been lying down, trying to regain his energy, but when he heard we were going to PF Chang’s, there was no chance that he would miss it. It has been a family favorite for years.

I was very excited about this visit to PF Chang’s not only because it was my birthday celebration, but because they have a new fall season menu. As if there weren't enough fabulous dishes to choose from at PF Chang’s, right?

Items on the seasonal menu include Apple Cinnamon Martini, Ginger Jalapeno Mule and Apple Cinnamon Martini, Shanghai Waldorf Salad, Crispy Korean Chicken Wings, Miso Chicken, Harvest Vegetable "Fried Rice", Vietnamese Noodles with Fillet and Shrimp, Prawns citrus and mustard, Apple Dessert Wontons and Pumpkin Dessert Wontons.

I had a hard time choosing what to order. Can you blame me I finally went to my old booth, the Kung Pao scallops (nice and spicy!), But luckily my mother ordered the citrus mustard shrimp and she shared. They were some of the best shrimp: huge, tender, and moist. Absolutely cooked to perfection. They were served on hand-cut zucchini ribbons, and both the waiter and the lady who cleared our table mentioned that citrus mustard shrimp were a favorite among seasonal items. It is one of those good foods that you find yourself daydreaming the next day. Please tell me I'm not the only one doing that.

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We also tried the Pumpton Wontons. One word: fabulous. I think I should try to recreate that recipe for my blog. Crispy wontons stuffed with pumpkin / cream cheese filling and served with vanilla, pumpkin sauce and nuts.

If you like to be creative in the kitchen, I have good news for you! P.F. Chang will host The Goodness of Fall contest and they will accept recipe entries until Friday, November 15. To enter, you must create a recipe with at least 3 of the seasonal ingredients listed on the contest page.

Voting takes place daily on Facebook and a panel of judges will choose a grand prize winner out of the 5 recipes with the most votes. Plus, every day a $ 50 gift card for P.F. Chang’s will be awarded. Judges for the Grand Prize winner include Philip Chiang, co-founder of P.F. Chang’s; Yuji Iwasa, Head of Chef Development at P.F. Chang’s; Mary Melton, director of drinks at P.F. Chang’s; and Jennifer Chong, a prominent blogging partner.

The grand prize winner plus one lucky guest will win a 2-night trip to the Napa Valley in the spring of 2014, which will include an exclusive visit to a guest house in a vineyard where Judges Philip Chiang and Yuji Iwasa will cook some of their favorite dishes. . Mary Melton, director of drinks for P.F. Chang will host an extensive wine tasting. Talk about a once-in-a-lifetime Napa Valley getaway. If you win, will you take me? 😉

Be sure to follow @pfchangs on Twitter and follow P.F. Chang is on Pinterest to track the contest and other happenings at P.F. Chang’s.

Today I made an apple, quinoa and kale salad with spicy shrimp and bacon. This salad has fallen written all over it. First I cooked some diced bacon in a pan. I reserved the bacon crumble to put on top and sautéed some red onion and thin apple slices in the bacon fat and added some fresh ginger. Then I added a little bit of broken kale and cooked it until it softens a little bit. I added a little red quinoa that I cooked separately.

For a light dressing I mixed a little concentrate of apple juice, white balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Finally I sautéed some shrimp that I drizzled with cayenne pepper and paprika. I thought it was the perfect marriage of sweet, spicy, and salty. Plus, with the exception of a little bacon, it's a really healthy salad.

If there is a P.F. Chang is in your area, be sure to try his new seasonal menu. And if there isn't one in your area, get in your car and drive until you find one. You will not regret. Also, you can visit the recipe contest page and print a $ 10 coupon off $ 40. I forgot to print mine before I went this past weekend. But that just means I can go again this weekend. And I am testing the Apple Cinnamon Martini.

What P.F. Is Chang's seasonal dish more interesting to try?

Apple, kale, quinoa salad with spicy shrimp and bacon

½ cup red quinoa

1 cup of water

2 slices of bacon, diced

2 medium apples, thinly sliced

½ red onion, thinly sliced

1 small bundle of kale, rinsed well, discarded stems and torn leaves to pieces

1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined

½ teaspoon of paprika

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided plus additional

1 tablespoon of concentrated apple juice

1 tablespoon of white balsamic vinegar

¾ teaspoon of salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Rinse the quinoa under running water if it is not rinsed. Combine quinoa and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low and cook 15 minutes.

Cook the bacon in a large nonstick skillet until crisp. Remove the bacon from a reserve. Add enough olive oil to the skillet to equal about 2 tablespoons when combined with bacon fat.

Heat the oil over medium heat and add the red onion and the apple slices. Sauté for 3-4 minutes.

Add kale and ginger and cook until the kale is wilted, using tongs to turn it occasionally to cook evenly. I like that my kale is still a little crispy, so I only cook it for a minute or 2. Cook it longer if you want the kale to be softer.

Add the quinoa and ¾ teaspoon of salt.

Sprinkle the shrimp with paprika, cayenne pepper and salt to taste. In a separate skillet or grill pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil and sauté shrimp for 2-3 minutes, turning.

In a small bowl, mix apple juice concentrate, balsamic vinegar, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Pour over the quinoa / kale mixture. Serve on top with shrimp and crumbled bacon.

Yield: 4 servings Fall Season Menu

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