The start of summer has flown by, and I cannot believe how much has happened since I last shared a recipe! Alex and I moved to Queen Anne in the beginning of May, and it took me a little while to adjust to our new, smaller kitchen. Mise en place, the practice of preparing ingredients ahead of time in separate bowls, comes in handy in all cooking, but especially in a tiny prep area. I was inspired to make this recipe today, so that I could have gluten-free noodles ready when my Mom arrives for her Seattle visit! I set aside two zucchinis to make a fresh bowl of “zoodles” for her dinner.
We have been cooking and enjoying local Seattle foods, but our new place does not have a grill. I am really looking forward to late-summer grilling with my family when we gather at the beach! In honor of mid-summer, here is one of my favorite recipes to showcase what’s in season.
PCC supplies for a meaty pasta sauce.
Snap the dried ends off from stemmed asparagus, and just keep snapping stems into smaller pieces for cooking.
Try purple garlic if you find it.
Mise en place makes for seamless transitions while cooking.
Break up mushrooms into smaller pieces using your spoon or spatula.
This Lucini marinara has the greatest texture.
Hearty, colorful sauce is a staple in our home.
This meal used a lot of pots, but we have plenty of sauce leftover.
Fresh, bright flavors of the season.
Linguine topped with zucchini, topped with sauce, topped with cheese!
Turkey meat sauce is one of my go-to make ahead meals, and the addition of seasonal vegetables makes this dinner all the more enticing. I use fresh vegetables when I can, but this recipe could also work well with frozen mixed vegetables. Try different vegetables until you find your favorite! When asparagus is not in season, I tend to use broccoli in this recipe. Marinara sauce clings to broccoli’s texture, for a pleasing mouth-feel. This hearty sauce is the perfect addition to linguine or other noodles, and adding zucchini noodles makes for an especially bright dish.
I love the flavor of purple garlic, so give that a try if you can find it. Purple garlic is naturally sweet, and can be added later on in the cooking process. When using white garlic, add garlic, onions and peppers at the same time to soften the bite of the garlic flavor.
You will need:
1-2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1 pound ground turkey
about 20 asparagus spears, snapped into 2-3 inch pieces
mushrooms (we used sliced crimini)
24 ounces tomato marinara sauce
4-5 cloves garlic, minced
Optional: hot red pepper flakes. Serve topped with fresh parmesan.
Heat two large saucepans over medium heat, and add olive oil or cooking spray (I like La Tourangelle Expeller-Pressed Grapeseed Oil for cooking). When your oil has warmed, add onion and peppers to one pan and turkey meat to the other. Break up turkey with a spoon as it cooks, to reach desired bite-size.
Stir onion and peppers and allow to soften for 3-4 minutes. Keep breaking up turkey and make sure it browns evenly.
Add asparagus and allow to cook for a few minutes more. Then, stir in a handful of mushrooms.
As soon as your turkey has browned, remove that pan from the heat.
Add tomato sauce to your veggie pan and turn the heat down to medium-low. Add cooked turkey to your sauce, and stir to coat.
Prepare pasta water or another pan for pasta or zucchini noodles. For this meal, we used a combination of the two.
At the final stage of sauce preparation, turn the heat to low and add your garlic, fresh basil and spices. Adding spices at the end showcases their bright flavors.
A big thank you to Sara Wallace for inspiring this meal! Sara and I met as freshmen on the Williams College rowing team, and became fast friends during our first Winter Study together. She has a thirst for adventure and has the energy for any fun, new diversion! Somehow, we have yet to cook together, but in a recent email she told me she regularly makes one-pan chicken and Brussels sprouts. I found a recipe online on a lovely gluten-free cooking blog called “So… Let’s Hang Out“, and made minor modifications to the ingredients. I added butternut squash to my meal because I have been loving the roasted squash flavor lately. Chili powder adds another layer of flavor to the naturally sweet butternut squash – the combination is so good that I find myself “taste-testing” straight from the baking sheet! The chili powder/squash concept comes from “The Whole30 Cookbook”, by Melissa Hartwig.
Alex and I shared this one-pan wonder for an easy weeknight meal. He had his chicken over leftover brown rice, which soaked up the lemon juice and chicken broth. I am still following Whole30 most days, so I just increased my Brussels sprouts pile for extra carbohydrates. The great thing about this meal is that you will have 30 minutes of down-time while the chicken and Brussels sprouts finish in the oven, and cleanup is a breeze. I used pre-cut butternut squash and Brussels sprouts to speed up the process, and thanks to that shortcut, this dinner took about 45 minutes to prepare from start to finish.
Butternut squash, seasoned and ready to roast.
With squash this tasty, it is hard to resist eating straight from the pan!
Pantry staples to make this meal happen. We use these ingredients in most meals.
After about five minutes, chicken is nice and brown on one side.
Halved Brussels sprouts, coated in olive oil, salt and pepper.
Our skillet is just large enough for two pounds of chicken and one pound of sprouts.
I love the details on this porcelain juicer and its simple design for catching lemon seeds.
Brussels sprouts get nice and crispy in the oven, and both chicken and sprouts soak up wonderful, bright lemon flavors.
One pan lemon chicken and Brussels sprouts, with a side of roasted butternut squash.
One-Pan Lemon Chicken and Brussels Sprouts – serves 2 to 4
We experimented with using both chicken breasts and thighs in our first pan. You can also use skin on, bone-in chicken, but if you have large pieces, use a meat thermometer to make sure chicken is fully cooked. Cast-iron works especially well for this meal, because it makes your chicken nice and crispy.
You will need:
1 large butternut squash, or one container of pre-cut squash (thank you, Whole Foods!)
1-2 T olive oil
2 t chili powder
2 t salt, 1 t pepper
1 T coconut oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 pounds of chicken breasts or thighs, or both
1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
1 T olive oil
juice of one lemon
1/4 C chicken stock
Optional: serve over brown rice.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Combine butternut squash pieces with olive oil, chili powder, salt and pepper on a large rimmed baking sheet.
Roast for 30-40 minutes, stirring at least once to make sure pieces are not sticking to the baking sheet.
While butternut squash is roasting, prepare your Brussels sprouts. Wash and halve sprouts, and combine with olive oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Mix thoroughly to coat, set aside.
Heat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (the butternut squash can handle the heat for a little while!).
Pat chicken dry with a paper towel, and season with salt and pepper to taste, on both sides.
Heat an oven-safe skillet over medium to medium-high heat, and add coconut oil.
When oil is hot, add chicken to your pan in a single layer, and do not move for 6-8 minutes. You want the chicken nice and browned on the bottom before flipping.
When the first side has browned, flip chicken and continue cooking.
Next, add Brussels sprouts, lemon juice and chicken stock, stirring to combine. Scrape the bottom of your pan to loosen any browned bits.
Carefully place your pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Your butternut squash should be done around the same time, but if it is starting to get too browned, you can remove the sheet pan so the pieces do not burn. Simply return the pan to the oven when the chicken and sprouts have just a few minutes left to cook.
I pulled this recipe together after a long morning of rowing workouts. I dreamt up this recipe when I found leftover turkey bacon, lemon and Brussels sprouts that needed to be used, and combined those ingredients with the bowtie pasta I was craving! I have cooked a similar recipe from “How to Cook Everything: The Basics,” called “Pasta with Broccoli and Sausage,” and that experience informed my steps for this recipe.
The first time I had shaved Brussels sprouts was at my mother-in-law Betsy’s house, so I consulted her to find out which food processor blade to use. I have used the chopping blade before for Brussels sprouts, and that produced confetti-sized pieces. With the slicing disc, you get larger pieces, and I prefer that texture for a hearty meal like this. The turkey bacon added a rich, savory flavor to the Brussels sprouts. We have a really nice brick of parmesan cheese that we have been grating, so I added plenty of cheese for more flavor. Lemon juice added a bright note to the combination, and I finished the dish with more grated parmesan and fresh ground black pepper. As soon as I sat down to eat this dish, I realized I wanted to add some more protein. I poured my serving into a small pot and cracked an egg on top, and scrambled the combination until the egg was fully cooked.
Use the slicer option on your food processor to shred Brussels sprouts.
I shredded about one pound of Brussels sprouts for this recipe, minus one handful used earlier in the week.
Use a stainless steel skillet for this recipe to get crispy edges on your turkey bacon.
Brussels sprouts cook down a bit when they have a chance to steam under a lid.
I transferred pasta to the pan with a slotted spoon and reserved my pasta water.
Grate parmesan onto your ingredients while they are hot.
My first round included just the veggies, pasta and a little turkey bacon, so I decided to add an egg to the mix.
I scooped one serving of pasta into a small pot and added one large egg.
The cooked egg coated the pasta and other ingredients nicely, and I was happy to have the extra protein.
Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Turkey Bacon Pasta – serves 6 – 8
Betsy and I chatted after I made this dish, and she suggested that Canadian bacon could also be used. She also mentioned using liquid hickory smoke and edamame for a no-meat version of the dish. Toasted walnuts, slivered almonds or pine nuts might make a nice topping.
You will need:
1 pound Brussels sprouts
one pound of bowtie pasta
about 1 T olive oil
2 slices of turkey bacon, chopped or torn into small pieces
1 T lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 T grated parmesan cheese
one egg per serving
Set up your food processor with the slicing disc. Wash Brussels sprouts and chop off rough ends. Feed Brussels sprouts into your food processor be shredded.
Add water to a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil for your pasta. Add pasta when water is ready, and follow cooking directions according to package. Do not dump out your pasta water – you will want some later on.
In a large, stainless steel skillet heat about 1 T olive oil over medium heat. Add turkey bacon and cook, stirring so bacon does not stick to your pan. When bacon has browned a bit, add shaved Brussels sprouts to the pan.
Add about 1/2 cup of water and cover your skillet with a lid to steam.
When Brussels sprouts are just beginning to become tender, squeeze lemon juice over the pan and stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add cooked pasta to the skillet using a slotted spoon. Remove pasta pot from heat and reserve pasta water.
Stir pasta and Brussels sprouts to incorporate, and grate a generous pile of parmesan cheese on top. Add up to 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water as needed to keep moisture in the dish and to create a creamy sauce to coat the pasta.
If desired, scoop one serving of shaved Brussels sprouts and turkey bacon pasta into a separate small pot or pan over medium heat and add one egg. Scramble ingredients until egg is fully cooked and egg whites go from clear to white.
Source: Bittman, Mark. How to Cook Everything: The Basics: All You Need to Make Great Food–with 1,000 Photos. N.p.: John Wiley & Sons Inc, 2012. Print.
I am back in Seattle and taking full advantage of the seafood options! When I look for new ingredients, I consider the nutrition, sustainability and cost of my options. Lately, my local grocery store, PCC, has featured wild-caught halibut and cod. The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch is my go-to source for recommendations on sustainable fish options and based on their findings, cod is the way to go. However, I bought both filets from the local PCC, which was just voted Whole Foods Magazine’s 2016 Retailer of the Year. The article announcing PCC’s accomplishment highlights that my grocer was the “founding partner of the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program, selling only seafood that has been fished or farmed in ways that protect sea life and habitats,” and that led me to conclude that the wild halibut at my store was sustainably caught. Finally, cod is typically less expensive than halibut in my area, but for the sake of trying out this recipe, I bought filets of both types of fish. In the end, I prefer cod for a recipe like this, where you want the fish to take on some of the broth’s flavor.
This dish is all about marrying flavors for a satisfying broth that unites the veggies, protein and carb ingredients. I visited the cooking blog “Alaska from Scratch” for a poached halibut recipe, which was adapted from another blog post from “Simply Scratch.” The main difference between the recipes is our fish preference (barramundi –> halibut –> cod). I also tweaked my broth to add a little depth to the flavor, threw in some local, small mushrooms and substituted quinoa for jasmine rice.
All of my ingredients for dinner!
Freshly rinsed quinoa, about to be toasted.
Toasted quinoa should smell a little nutty, and when you stir the quinoa you should not see water in the pot.
One large container of baby spinach almost fills my big pot.
You will be amazed at how much spinach cooks down!
Top: cod filet. Bottom: halibut.
Green onions and mushrooms simmering in the poaching liquid.
The final product: poached cod over a bed of quinoa and wilted spinach, topped with green onions, baby mushrooms and lime.
Here you can see the dark green spinach leaves from the bottom of my serving dish.
Poached Fish in Thai Coconut Curry Sauce – serves 2
I love a rich curry broth, and you can achieve that depth of flavor with a little soy sauce or fish sauce. You can always use more spinach, but this ratio of ingredients worked out well for us.
You will need:
2 T olive oil
10 oz fresh spinach
salt and pepper, to taste
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 T Thai red curry paste
2 t soy sauce or fish sauce
1 1/2 C chicken broth (I used low sodium)
14 oz coconut milk
½ t sugar
1 lb halibut or cod
¼ C green onions, sliced
Optional: serve over quinoa or rice. I cooked my quinoa in equal parts water and chicken broth.
If you are serving your fish with quinoa, get that started first. For best results, rinse quinoa in a mesh sieve under running water until water runs clear. Next, toast quinoa in a medium saucepan over low heat until excess rinsing water has evaporated and quinoa starts to smell a little nutty. Then, add liquids and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover to cook for 15 minutes. When your cooking liquid has been completely absorbed, cover pot and remove from heat to let quinoa sit for 5-10 minutes, fluff with fork before serving.
Meanwhile, heat 1 T olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add spinach and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sauté for about 5 minutes until just wilted. Set aside cooked spinach and wipe liquid out of pan.
Add 1 T olive oil to your large saucepan and warm over medium heat. Add chopped garlic, stirring constantly so garlic does not burn. Add curry paste, soy sauce, chicken broth, coconut milk and sugar. Raise heat and bring to a simmer (until the surface just bubbles) and then turn heat to low.
When curry liquid has reduced to about half, add your fish, scooping some poaching liquid over the filets. Cover the saucepan and poach fish for about 5 minutes, adding an extra minute or two for thicker filets. When fish is done, it should flake easily when tested with a fork.
Remove fish from poaching liquid and add green onions, mushrooms and juice from half the lime to your broth. Stir to combine and let the flavors combine for about 2 minutes.
Serve fish filets on a bed of spinach and quinoa or rice. Pour at least half a cup of the broth over each filet. Slice the remaining lime into wedges for serving.
After a full weekend of racing at the Holland-Beker, Jess and I enjoyed a Monday off from rowing training. I dedicated my off-day to exploring the countryside around Hillegersberg, where Uncle Bob and Cathinka live, by running with Cathinka and biking the dikes in nearby Delft with Bob. At the end of a day spent exploring outside, Bob and Cathinka treated me to a family dinner at home with the three of us and their grown foster-daughter, Michelle, who was visiting from nearby Utrecht. In the photo gallery, you can see photos from my morning run with Cathinka, where we ran past a working windmill, as well as photos from my bike adventure with Bob, and photos from a visit to the Markthal (market hall) in Rotterdam.
For dinner, we first enjoyed a chilled gazpacho course that Cathinka learned to make during a trip to France. The gazpacho was made with traditional tomatoes and herbs, with the refreshing addition of honeydew melon. Next, Cathinka stir-fried mixed vegetables in a large wok while Bob pan-fried fresh white-fish. The mixed vegetables were pre-chopped, seasonal vegetables available at the nearby grocery store, which had an incredibly varied and colorful produce section! My Uncle Bob is an avid cook, and attends a monthly gathering of enthusiastic cooks who meet to learn new recipes and prepare a four or five course meal for each other, with wine pairings. Next time I am in the Netherlands, I will have to see if we can coordinate a visit to that dinner, too!
A working windmill in Hillegersberg.
The view from the cafe where Bob took me during our bike ride.
A selfie with Uncle Bob during our dike bike ride by Delft.
The view from the halfway point of our bike ride.
Uncle Bob on his bike in Delft.
The outside table got a lot of use during our visit.
All set up for a lovely meal!
Soy sauce, butter and sunflower oil for our frying pans.
The large wok and cast iron pan in action.
Filets frying side-by-side, but only for a few minutes.
Cathinka and Uncle Bob were happy to have their cooking documented.
Cathinka serving dinner outside.
Chilled gazpacho with melon balls.
I love their soup serving dishes!
Chilled gazpacho with melon.
Fresh, buttery fish and stir-fried mixed veggies.
A group selfie to share with cousin Jenny!
Marley and Cathinka out for a walk.
The Hillegersberg windmill, as seen from across the lake.
Cathinka and me during an evening walk with Marley.
Marley, relaxing by the lake during our evening walk.
Markthal spice display.
The Markthal limited edition cheeses.
Bob took Jess and I to the Markthal, the giant indoor market in Rotterdam. The ceiling mural depicts all available foods!
Gazpacho with melon – serves 4
A melon baller would be useful for this recipe, but if you do not have one, simply cut your melon into bite-sized cubes.
You will need:
1 small honeydew melon, balled
2 pounds whole large ripe tomatoes
1 large onion
2 large garlic cloves
2 T chopped chervil (or French parsley)
2 T chopped basil
1 t thyme
salt, pepper to taste
1 T bouillon paste
Bring a pot of water to a boil and immerse tomatoes for one minute.
Drain and cool tomatoes under cold water.
Peel off tomato skin and cut tomatoes into quarters, remove and discard the seeds. You can save the tomato water for later if it separates easily.
In a food processor, chop the tomatoes along with sliced garlic cloves and chopped onion.
Pour the food processor mixture into a saucepan with about 3 cups of water and the bouillon paste.
Bring to a boil and cook for two minutes.
Turn off heat and allow to cool.
Once cool, stir in the herbs and season with salt and pepper.
Chill soup in the refrigerator.
Halve your honeydew melon and scoop out at least 2 cups of melon balls. Add to soup and continue to chill until serving.
White fish and mixed vegetables – serves 4
Use any fresh, thin filet of white fish for this recipe.
You will need:
1 T sunflower oil
2 T soy sauce
packaged chopped mixed vegetables
1 T butter
2 T olive oil
1.5 – 2 lbs of fish
salt and pepper to taste
Heat a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat.
Add sunflower oil and packaged vegetables, and stir to keep the vegetables moving.
Add half of your soy sauce and stir to coat, adding more if desired.
Meanwhile, heat a cast iron pan over medium heat. Add butter and olive oil.
Cook two filets of white-fish at a time, flipping after about 3 minutes on each side. When filet is fully cooked, the edges will crisp and the fish will flake easily with a fork. The filet will become more opaque while cooking.
Season with a sprinkling of salt and pepper before serving.
As our Chicago chapter came to a close, Alex and I found ourselves traveling all over the city to see friends. We calculated recently that we have been in 15 states over the past 5 weeks! We have spent this exciting transition time staying with many wonderful host friends, and saying goodbye-for-now to our Chicago family. I wrapped up my time as a rehab aide at Athletico, had one last sweep team practice with Lincoln Park Boat Club and witnessed Alex’s graduation from medical school. Looking back on the month of May, I can see that we filled our schedules to the brim, but I would not have it any other way! It was a treat to be reunited with the Taylor family for a week of adventures in Michigan and Chicago. Next, we spent a week on the East Coast with my family, and met my brother’s baby for the first time.
During all of our moving about, we sampled new restaurants and made a variety of recipes in countless kitchens. Most recently, Patrick shared his family recipe for steamed artichokes, and I requested grilled salmon as a pairing. My niece, Kayden, and I tried out a recipe for zucchini boats to round out the family feast menu. Kayden is a skilled baker and loves trying out new recipes in the kitchen. We will definitely be cooking together again soon.
Now I am off on another racing adventure in the double with Jess. I will be cooking and learning new recipes and flavors, but may not be blogging while I am away. Until next time!
Katie enjoying Gayle’s Best Ever grilled cheese from Block 37.
Getting settled in at Rick’s apartment with my buddy Rudy.
Ollie went on a walk with all four humans in her apartment that morning!
On our first morning in Sawyer, MI, Annika, Alex and I went for a hike the moment we woke up.
Annika learning to scull in Buchanan, MI.
Betsy and I are proud of our graduate!
Drs. Alex and Peter Taylor at graduation.
Behold, the most perfect edible artichoke from Dover’s Safeway!
Before we prepared the artichokes, we made sure we had selected the right size pots.
Patrick roughly chopped the artichoke stems.
We sliced off the tops of our artichokes, but you can leave them whole to steam.
We stuffed this mixture of stems, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper in between the artichokes’ leaves.
Our artichokes, after steaming for an hour.
Kayden spoons filling into each zucchini boat.
I mixed a caprese salad to pair with our zucchini boats.
Caprese salad, ready to chill, and zucchini boats, ready to bake!
Zucchini boats, fresh from the oven.
Caprese salad with cherry tomatoes, mozarella, basil, balsamic and olive oil.
Patrick expertly grilled this large filet of salmon.
Salmon sandwich meal made with leftovers.
Me and Alex after completing the Justin’s Beach House 5k run in Bethany Beach, DE.
We took the little ones to two festivals over the weekend!
Charlotte has developed an enthusiasm for strawberries, and loved seeing where they grow.
Grilled Salmon – serves 6 to 8
I have not tried grilling salmon on my own yet, but I collected the below tips from Patrick. Remember not to move the fish around on the grill until you are ready to flip! If you move the fish, it can break apart on the grill and lose its grill lines.
You will need:
2 lb salmon
1 t salt
1 t pepper
1 t garlic powder
about 1 T olive oil
Sprinkle salmon on both sides with salt, black pepper and garlic powder. Rub in with a little olive oil.
Heat your grill to about 400 degrees Fahrenheit (close to high heat on our grill).
Grill the meat side of salmon first for 3 to 4 minutes with the grill lid closed. The fish should start to become opaque on the meat side where it is starting to cook.
Flip salmon once to grill the skin side using a grill spatula or tongs. Close the lid again and cook for another 4 or 5 minutes until the whole filet is just opaque.
When salmon is ready, the skin should easily fall off.
Steamed Artichokes – serves 8
You will need:
8 whole artichokes, including stems
6 large garlic cloves
½ C fresh parsley, chopped
3-4 T olive oil to drizzle
Cut off the bottom of the stems and slice off the dry end of the stem. Dice the remaining stem.
Chop garlic and parsley and combine with stem pieces, salt and pepper.
Bang the bottom of the artichoke against the tabletop to open up the flower. If you need to, you can pull apart the leaves by hand instead.
Stuff diced items between artichoke leaves.
Stand artichokes up in a large pot and fill with about 2″ of water.
Pour oil over artichokes. Bring water to steam and cover for 45-60 minutes. Your artichokes are ready when their leaves pull off easily.
Zucchini Boats and Caprese Salad – serves 8
We followed a recipe for “Stuffed Zucchini Boats with Tomato Salad” from Cooking Light and MyRecipes.com (see below). Kayden and I opted to leave out the bread from the original recipe, because we wanted to share the zucchini boats with my mother, who eats gluten-free. Our zucchini were exceptionally fresh, and we did not miss the bread at all! The caprese salad from cherry tomatoes was also a big hit, and we keep making that dish as a side for dinner.
You will need:
4 large zucchini
4 chicken sausage
1 small yellow onion
8 ounces of mozzarella cheese
2 C cherry tomatoes
1 T balsamic vinegar
1/4 C thinly sliced fresh basil
1 t olive oil
Wash the outside of your zucchini thoroughly before halving.
Scoop out and save the insides of the zucchini, leaving about 1/4 inch intact beyond the skin.
Cover and microwave the zucchini halves in an oven safe container for four minutes.
Meanwhile, dice the zucchini insides and save about 2 cups of material.
Remove casings from chicken sausage and break sausage into small pieces.
Heat a large pan over medium heat and add spray with cooking spray. Add onion and sausage and stir to combine for about 4 minutes.
Combine zucchini insides with your cooked sausage and onion in a mixing bowl. Spoon this mixture into each zucchini boat.
Chop up about 2 ounces of mozzarella cheese and layer on top of your boats.
Halve the cherry tomatoes and combine with remaining mozzarella, balsamic, basil and olive oil. Set aside in fridge to chill, if desired.
Place zucchini boats on the top rack of your oven and broil for two to three minutes, checking to see if mozzarella melts and browns.
After our last day of racing at the Olympic Trials, my parents took my husband Alex, me and Jess out to eat in St. Armand’s Circle. We picked an Italian restaurant that had caught my eye the previous week when Jess and I were on more stringent meal plans. After several days of racing, I was craving a hearty, warm meal, and savored the salmon risotto that I ordered for lunch. After the meal, we stopped by Kilwin’s for ice cream, at my sister-in-law Becky’s recommendation. I ordered the Heavenly Hash flavor, which I had not come across since college!
This blog entry is the first in a series of six ways to prepare salmon. Salmon is one of the staples in the Taylor kitchen, and Jess’s boyfriend Austin recently requested my top three salmon recipes. There are so many favorites to chose from, so why not six?
For my birthday eve meal, Alex and I cooked our own version of salmon risotto. We loaded up our risotto with as many veggies as possible, and used the Persian spice zarchobeh for extra flavor and color. We broiled two small filets of salmon, and added the cooked salmon after the Arborio rice had absorbed all of our cooking liquid.
The original salmon risotto at Venezia in St. Armand’s Circle
Heavenly Hash from Kilwins’
Two beautiful filets of salmon, equaling about 3/4 of a pound
Most of the risotto veggies
Red onion and lots of butter
Peppers, onions, mushrooms and garlic await the arborio rice
A pile of arborio rice, waiting to be combined
The salmon filets are 95% cooked through, and ready to be added to the risotto
Alex Taylor – another Taylor in your kitchen! – adds frozen peas to the mix
The final product
Posing with the final product!
Our shared birthday meal on our favorite plates
Syd’s Birthday Eve Salmon Risotto – serves 4 to 6
We used 1/2 stick of butter as recommended in the “Wild mushroom risotto with peas” recipe by Giada de Laurentiis in “Everyday Italian,” but you could get away with using half that amount. Allow a full hour for cooking this meal; the risotto alone takes at least 30 minutes, and you will want to be patient while all cooking liquids get absorbed. White wine is traditionally a popular addition to risotto. If you want to use white wine, pick a dry wine and add just 2/3 of a cup after you add your Arborio rice.
You will need:
1 lb of salmon
½ T dried basil
½ T garlic salt
½ T black pepper
½ stick of butter
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 or 2 red peppers, thinly sliced
1 C white button mushrooms, finely chopped
1 ½ C Arborio rice
32 oz chicken broth
½ T cayenne pepper
1 T zarchobeh or turmeric
1 can artichoke hearts
1 C frozen peas
12 cherry tomatoes
1 handful fresh basil, washed and torn
¼ C shredded parmesan
Add half of your dried basil, garlic salt and black pepper to the bottom of an oven-safe ceramic dish. Place salmon filets on top of spices, skin down, and add the remaining basil, garlic salt and pepper to the top of the filets.
Broil salmon for approximately 20 minutes on high.
In a large pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add thinly sliced red onion as soon as butter has melted, and stir for five minutes until the slices begin to soften.
Add chopped garlic and thinly sliced red peppers to your pan, stirring to combine. After a few more minutes, add chopped mushrooms.
When mushrooms begin to darken, add your Arborio rice to the mix.
Start adding chicken broth by the cupful, and stir while broth is absorbed by rice (about 5 minutes per cup of broth).
After you have added three cups of broth, add your cayenne pepper and zarchobeh or turmeric. Add your final cup of broth.
When your broth has mostly been absorbed, add canned artichoke hearts, peas, fresh basil and cherry tomatoes. Stir to combine for about five minutes or until all ingredients have heated through. Finally, add shredded parmesan and stir to combine evenly.
The first risotto recipe I ever followed came from Giada’s cookbook. Patrick and I made the “wild mushroom risotto with peas” found on page 131 of “Everyday Italian.” I followed the sequence of Giada’s recipe loosely when I created this dish.
Source: Laurentiis, Giada De. Everyday Italian: 125 Simple and Delicious Recipes. New York: Clarkson Potter, 2005. Print.