It’s been so long since my last post, and it’s not as if I stopped cooking. No, I’ve still been plugging away, cooking the majority of our dinners. And, I’ve been trying some wonderful recipes! My heart, however, just hasn’t been into blogging. Sometimes updating my blog, after everyone is quietly snuffling in their beds, can be difficult. Sometimes I just want to read. Sometimes I want to get lost in Pinterest. Sometimes I want to check in with my FB friends. Or play Hay Day. Sometimes that is the hard part of being a full-time wife and mom, as well as working outside the home full time. But, as winter sheds it’s coat (yes, we have a Cali version of winter) and spring dawns anew, we can all feel somewhat reborn. Throw aside what has been holding you down, sit outside and soak up the sun. Take a walk and marvel at what beauty springtime brings. Ride a bike and feel the warm breeze on your face. Ahhh, to start anew. It’s a wonderful thing!
What better way to pay homage to spring than wild caught salmon? Don’t get me wrong, I can eat salmon year-round. But there is something about salmon that speaks to warmer weather.
1 tsp packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp cornstarch
1 1/2 – 2 lbs skin-on salmon filet
Pepper to taste
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 recipe glaze (below)
3/4 tsp coarse sea salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300°. Combine brown sugar, salt, and cornstarch in a small bowl and set aside. Heat oil in a 12″ oven-safe nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Place salmon, flesh side down, in skillet and cook until well browned, about 1 minute. Using tongs, carefully flip salmon and cook on skin side for 1 minute.
Remove skillet from heat and evenly spoon glaze over salmon. Transfer skillet to oven and cook until fillets register 125° (for medium-rare) and are still translucent when cut into, about 7 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.
Wine Pairing Suggestions:
Pinot Gris / Pinot Grigio
Total time: 30 minutes
*Derived from America’s Test Kitchen
When I first looked at this recipe, I was hesitant. I’m not a pup anymore. Remember when you could eat a huge cinnamon roll donut as a kid and be just fine until lunch? Ya, me, too. Try that now and I feel heavy and sick to my stomach. Don’t even get me started on the feeling like a nap is imminent. These are the reasons I had to pause. But, I was making this ahead for Tahoe, so coupled with some eggs, if just might work. And I dare say, it did!
1 loaf French bread cut into 1/2″ cubes (challah is a great option here)
2 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract (such as Spice Island)
For streusel topping:
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
Pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
Spray a 12-muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray. Cut bread into cubes and completely fill each well with bread. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, sugar, and vanilla. Carefully pour mixture evenly over each muffin well, compressing the bread cubes to allow more liquid to be absorbed. Cover the tin with plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 – 12 hours. (I refrigerated 2-3 hours and they were still amazing!)
Preheat oven to 350° and prepare streusel topping. In a small bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and butter. Use two forks or two knives to crumble mixture into coarse crumbs. Sprinkle mixture evenly on muffins.
Bake muffins 20 – 25 minutes, or until tops are golden. Let muffins cool about 5 minutes and serve warm. These are great made ahead and then popped in the toaster oven.
Serves: 12 muffins
Total time: 2 hours, 40 minutes
*Derived from The Pioneer Woman
I have been on an Asian themed rice kick lately. I have no idea where it comes from. Oh wait, yes I do, I’ve been dyeing for Chinese food for at least a month, but just haven’t gotten around to making my way there. Well, I did that one time, but it was so horribly bad I hardly think that counts. So, since I’m hitting the gym at lunch instead of eating, I might as well make Asian food for dinner!
1 lb lean ground beef (or any other ground meat prefered)
¼ cup brown sugar (if you like it sweet, you can add up to ½ a cup)
¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbs sesame oil
3 Cloves garlic minced (Time saving tip: Use jarred minced garlic, such as Spice Island)
½ tsp minced ginger (Time saving tip: Use Gourmet Garden’s Ginger Paste)
½ tsp crushed red pepper (if you like it spicier, you can add up to 1 tsp)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 bunch green onions, diced
Add sesame oil to large skillet and heat to medium. Brown ground meat with garlic. Drain almost all fat and add brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger, salt and pepper, and red pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes to blend flavors. Serve over steamed riced with green onions sprinkled over the top.
Wine Pairing Suggestions:
Total time: 30 minutes
*Derived from Izzy Writes
So I seriously might have just found a new “Go To Salmon” recipe. And I almost feel a little guilty (I’m very loyal to my favorites). Almost. But this was so good, there is no way I could feel guilty. I mean, who could blame me? I think my usual salmon recipe would understand. This is THAT good. I marinated the salmon for about 8 hours. And grilled it for about 6 minutes. The salmon was almost caramelized at that point. So very lovely. This just in! The Hubs said it reheats great for lunch!
1 1/2 lbs salmon filet
1/3 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
In a ziplock bag, combine soy sauce, brown sugar, water, and vegetable oil. Squeeze bag until sugar is dissolved. Place salmon in bag making sure it is completely covered. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
Preheat grill to medium high. Lightly oil grill so fish does not stick. Place salmon on grill, be sure to discard marinade. Cook salmon for 6-8 minutes, or until it flakes easily with a fork.
Prep time: 15 minutes; Total time (with minimum marinating time): 2 hours, 31 minutes