Friday, April 30, 2010

Poached Egg with Salmon on Pumpernickel Toast

Recently I learned to poached an egg. It wasn't really hard. I was nervous about the water being the right temperature before I put the egg in but it all turned out well. I don't really like eggs but knew Adam would and he did!

Easy poached eggs from Everyday Food, March 2010:

In a 12-inch straight sided skillet, heat 2 inches water over medium heat until bubbles cover the bottom and side of the pan. Crack each large egg into a seperate small bowl (do not use eggs with broken yolks). When a few bubbles have broken the surface of the water, gently pour each egg into the pan, leaving room between them.

Cook eggs, undisturbed, while the white is just set and yolk is still runny, 3 to 4 minutes. Use a rubber spatula to gently release eggs from the bottom of pan, if necessary.

Using a slotted spoon, remove eggs from water, blot the bottom of the spoon on a paper towel to remove excess water before serving.

Adam ate his poached egg on top of toasted pumpernickel bread with cream cheese and smoked Nova Scotia salmon (I think thinly sliced Norweigan smoked salmon would have been better but it was not available at the store - it has a less harsh fishy taste and is lighter in color). You can also add a few capers with this combo too.

You can also eat a poached egg on an english muffin with hollandaise sauce as eggs Benedict or on top of a salad or on top of toast with cream cheese and a tomato slice.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Salmon in Parchment Packets

This is the last thing I have to share with you from the Everyday Food Jan/Feb 2010 edition!

Adam has come to be a big fan of salmon. He loved the pan fried salmon I made a few weeks ago and wanted to make it again. But I just had to try something different.

4 skinless salmon fillets, about 6 oz. each (I left the skin on because after baking it's a nice treat for the pups and Adam)
3/4 pounds green beans and/or asparagus, trimmed
lemon zest from 1 lemon
4 teaspoons capers, rinsed and drained
salt and pepper
4 teaspoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place salmon fillets in center of four 16-inch-long pieces of parchment paper. Top with green beans and/or asparagus, lemon zest and capers. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle each with 1 teaspoon oil. Fold parchment into an envelope - bring long ends of paper together and fold down 3 times to make a seam. Tuck ends underneath to secure.

Place packets on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until packets are puffed up and salmon is cooked through - about 15-20 minutes but this all depends on the thickness of the salmon.

Waiting to be wrapped up...

All enveloped up...

And done!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Chickpea Curry over Rice

I was cooking from the Everyday Food magazines a lot this weekend! I asked Adam to go through an edition and look for what he'd like and he chose was Chickpea Curry.
This can be a main course but we ate it as a side dish, which worked out nicely because I had some leftover to bring to work for lunch.

Use a plastic spoon if you can because the curry slightly stained my wooden spoon :(

Like yesterday's post, this is also from Everyday Food Jan/Feb 2010
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced small
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 cinnamon stick (3 inches) - mine were short so I used 2
ground cloves - I omitted because I didn't have any
2 cans (15 oz. each) no-salt-added chickpeas, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons ketchup
salt and pepper
chopped cilantro & lemon wedges for serving
In a large straight-sided skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until brown around the edges, about 4 minutes. Add garlic, curry, cinnamon and pinch of cloves and cook, stirring until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add chickpeas, ketchup, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook 20 minutes.
Uncover and increase heat to medium-high; cook until sauce is slightly reduced, 5 minutes.

Serve over a bed of rice and top with chopped cilantro and lemon juice.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Stir-Fried Turkey in Lettuce Wraps

A very quick and good lunch. And no carbs!!

From the Jan/Feb 2010 Everyday Foods magazine

1/4 cup soy sauce
4 teaspoons fish sauce (I didn't have any so I substituted it with more soy sauce)
4 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large shallot finely chopped
2 tablespoons peeled fresh ginger, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small jalapeno, finely chopped
NOTE - to save time, I put the shallot, ginger, garlic and jalapeno all in a food chopper until finely chopped.
1 pound ground turkey
2 large heads Bibb, Boston or iceberg lettuce leaves - I used butter lettuce that I bought at the Lancaster Farmers Market
shaved carrot for serving
lime wedges for serving

In a smal bowl, combine soy sauce, fish sauce and sugar, and stir until sugar dissolves. Set sauce aside.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat skillet. Add shallot, ginger, garlic and jalapeno and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add turkey and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon until almost cooked through, 5 minutes. Add half the sauce, stir and let simmer about 2 minutes until meat is totally done. Serve in lettuce leaves with remaining sauce, shredded carrots and limes.

Lots of napkins are needed because these are very messy once rolled up and bitten into!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Key Lime Pie

Yesterday I made a key lime pie for our new Pastor's Installation reception. Why key lime pie? Well because I came across a bag of key limes for 99 cents at the Green Dragon market and I just had to buy them and then figure out what to make. So it came down to the pie or Lime Macadamia Cookies. The cookies will be made later - maybe not with key limes - but definitely will be made. Plus I had never made a key lime pie before.

This was the first time I worked with key limes. And I emphasize work. It took quite a lot of time and squeezing energy to juice these little guys. But I think the effort paid off with a sweet and tangy pie.

Recipe from Emril Lagasse, with my moderations.

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons butter, melted
2 14-ounce cans sweetened condensed milk
1 cup key lime or regular lime juice - I used 3/4 key lime juice and 1/4 cup regular juice from a bottle
2 whole eggs
1 cup sour cream
4 tablespoons powdered sugar
Lime zest

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter with your hands. Press the mixture firmly into a 9-inch pie plate, and bake until brown, about 15-20 minutes. If you have a pie curst shield, use for baking the crust. Remove crust from oven and allow to cool to room temp before filling.

Lower oven temperature to 325 degrees.

In a seperate bowl, combine the condensed milk, lime juice and eggs. Whisk until well blended and place the filling in the cooled pie shell. Bake, using the pie sheild again, for 15 minutes and allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

Once pie is thoroughly chilled, in a small bowl, combine the sour cream and powdered sugar and spread over the top of the pie using a spatula. Sprinkle the lime zest as a garnish on top of the sour cream and serve chilled.
Before the reception:

After the reception:

It was goood!

I was nervous about the sour cream topping not being sweet enough but it was a nice mix with the tangy filling and sweet crust!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Visiting D.C.

Over the weekend Adam and I ventured to Washington, D.C. to visit my dear friends Susie, Jeff and baby Alex. I hadn't seen Alex since she was a wee baby so I was so anxious to spend time with her. She was such a happy baby!

I have my boots on, Uncle Adam! Let's head to the big city!

The Van Leuvens
The new World War II monument
After a long day of metro rides, visiting a few memorials, a brief visit to the very crowded Natural History Museum, a walk down the Mall and lunch, we headed home where Alex enjoyed her swing in the great spring weather!

Look that those teeth!

Saturday night for dinner we went to Bethesda. After dinner, we had gelato from Dolcezza. I enjoyed Mango Campari & Orange Honey Cardamon (a bit spicy!) and Susie had chocolate and lime. What a great treat! I have had gelato in Italy and Susie has several times... this is just like the real thing!

We had a great weekend catching up!
Girls got to have girl talk; guys got to have German beer and schnapps.
All were happy!
See you the next time we come to visit, Alex!
Adam made a new friend!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

New Table & Chairs

Look at our new table and chairs! My mom found this for us from Pier 1. The base of the table and chairs is a light green and the top a nice golden honey - a very rustic look that goes perfect in the "barn".
I just picked up the 4th chair (it was on back order) so you don't see it in this picture. The table needed to be assembled but it was very easy - I don't know if I can say that because I was enjoying a beer and playing with Baxter while Adam was putting it together - but it looked like it was an easy task. It's a very sturdy table and chairs.
Now we just have to stay home long enough to have a meal at the table. Maybe in two weekends (we're going to D.C. this weekend).