Archive for ‘Side Dishes’

April 27, 2011

Recipe Swap – Asian Grilled Salmon with Coconut Rice

Asian Grilled Salmon and Coconut Rice

Recently, I’ve been trying to get more involved in the ‘cooking community’. Part of this has been cooking more with friends. Part of it has been starting a food blog. Most recently, I ventured out and decided to be a part of a recipe swap hosted by A Taste of Home Cooking Blog. The idea of this is simple; submit an Asian  recipe  and  get assigned one in return to cook and review / blog about.

My husband went to high school in Japan, so coming up with a recipe for me to recommend  was easy, I sent out his favorite Kung Pao Chicken. The ‘recipe’ I got in return, was actually a full meal from Nicole at Baby Food Scoops! The meal included Asian Grilled Salmon, Coconut Rice and Sauteed Snap Peas. Being  that I was in a bit of a hurry the night I made this, and that my husband isn’t really a fan of snap peas, I made the salmon and  rice without the peas (but will still post the snap peas recipe for anyone who is interested).

Review: My husband really liked the salmon. He thought that the marinade was great! Definitely a keeper! We love grilling in the summertime, so we will definitely make this again. The rice, my husband isn’t a huge fan  of coconut, so I knew he’s be a bit apprehensive about this…that and he isn’t a hue fan of anything that isn’t made in his Japaneese Rice Cooker. My mother however LOVED the rice. She actually got the recipe from me so that she could make it again.

Asian Grilled Salmon

Asian Grilled Salmon

Ingredients:
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tbsp unsweetened pineapple juice
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 garlic cloves, minced (I used 4…we like garlic in this household…)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce (I used a full tsp)
1 salmon fillet (2 pounds)

Directions:

In small bowl, combine the first nine ingredients.
Pour 3/4 cup into large resealable bag; add salmon.
Seal bag and turn to coat. Refrigerate at least 1 hour, turning occasionally.
Set aside remaining marinade for basting. Create a ‘pan’ for salmon with a sheet of aluminum foil. Drain and discard marinade.
Place salmon skin-side-down on aluminum foil. Grill, covered, over medium heat for 5 minutes. Brush with reserved marinade. Grill 15-20 minutes longer or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Coconut Rice

Coconut Rice

Ingredients:
2 cups Thai jasmine-scented rice
2 cups good-quality coconut milk, not fat-free (or 3 tbsp cream of coconut + milk to equal 1 cup)
1 3/4 cups water
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. canola oil
Optional Garnish: 2 Tbsp. dry shredded coconut

Directions:
Rub oil over the bottom of a deep-sided pot. (Note: the pot will need a tight-fitting lid).
Place rice, coconut milk, water, and salt in the pot. Place pot on the stove over medium to high heat. Stir well.
Continue to stir occasionally until the coconut milk & water come to a bubbling boil (stirring will keep the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot and burning).
Once the rice has begun to bubble, stop stirring. Turn down the heat to medium-low. Place lid askew on the pot, so that it is at least 3/4 covered.
Allow to simmer in this way for 10 minutes, or until rice has absorbed most of the coconut-water.
Now turn off the heat, but leave the pot on the burner. Cover the pot tightly with the lid and allow to sit 5-10 minutes, or until the rest of your dinner is ready (the rice will “steam” and be nice and sticky).
When ready to eat, remove the lid and “fluff” rice with a fork or chopsticks, gently loosening it in the pot.
Optional Step: “dry fry” 2 Tbsp. shredded coconut in a (dry) frying pan over medium heat, stirring continually until the coconut turns golden-brown. Sprinkle this toasted coconut over the rice for an extra coconutty treat. (I skipped this step since due to the whole ‘coconut issue’ with husband)

Sauteed Snap Peas

Ingredients:
1 pound sugar snap peas, rinsed
1-2 tbsp sesame oil
1-2 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tsp coarse sea salt

Directions:
Heat oil in large skillet. Add peas and sea salt to skillet and stir fry 10-15 minutes. Toss with sesame seeds and serve warm.

Source: Adapted from: Baby Food Scoops

Advertisements
February 26, 2011

Sauteed Spinach

 

Sauteed Spinach

In my house, it is a battle to get my husband to eat vegetables, which is unfortunate since I love veggies. I am constantly trying to find new ways of cooking them to make them ‘edible’ for him.  Over the years, I have found that adding garlic and butter to vegetables will make him at least give the vegetable dish a shot, so when I stumbled upon this recipe for sauteed spinach, I knew I had to give it a shot. It’s so quick and easy to make and although the picture doesn’t do it justice, it’s really flavorful. My proof that it was a good recipe? Husband finished his whole portion.

 

Sauteed Spinach

Ingredients

1 lb spinach (2 bunches)
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil + more if needed
1 Tbsp butter
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp red pepper flakes
salt to taste

Directions

Cut off the thick stems of the spinach and discard. Clean the spinach by filling up your sink with water and soaking the spinach to loosen any sand or dirt. Drain the spinach and then repeat soaking and draining. Put the spinach in a salad spinner to remove any excess moisture.
Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter in a large skillet on medium high heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and sauté for about 1 minute, until the garlic is just beginning to brown.
Add the spinach to the pan, packing it down a bit if you need to with your hand. Use a couple spatulas to lift the spinach and turn it over in the pan so that you coat more of it with the olive oil and garlic. Do this a couple of times. Cover the pan and cook for 1 minute. Uncover and turn the spinach over again. Cover the pan and cook for an additional minute.
After 2 minutes of covered cooking the spinach should be completely wilted. Remove from heat. Drain any excess moisture from the pan. Add a little more olive oil, sprinkle with salt to taste. Serve immediately.

Source: Adapted from: Simply Recipes

January 31, 2011

Three-Cheese Mini Mac and Cheese Bites

 

Mac and Cheese Bites

It is my true belief that mac and cheese is the ultimate comfort food.  Who wouldn’t be comforted by creamy, cheesy warm noodles?  When I was looking for a comforting warm appetizer that I could make for Superbowl Sunday, these little bites of comfort popped into my head (because whether you’re cheering for the Steelers or the Packers, who doesn’t want to be comforted when the opposing team runs for a touchdown?).

This recipe is simple but makes A LOT of mac and cheese  bites…about sixty…which is great for a big party, but for those of you who aren’t having a huge party, you might want to consider halving the recipe.

Mac and Cheese Bites

Ingredients

1/2 lb elbow macaroni
1 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons unbleached all-pupose flour
1 cup whole milk
4 oz aged white cheddar cheese, grated
4 oz Gruyère, grated
2 extra large egg yolks
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese
1/4 cup Panko crumbs
pinch of Kosher salt

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425º F.
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and cook according to the manufacturer’s directions. Drain the macaroni completely and set aside.
Spray mini muffin tins with non-stick cooking spray.
In a small bowl combine the Parmigiano-Reggiano and Panko. Set aside.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook the mixture for 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Add the milk and continue whisking until the mixture is thick, about 5 minutes. Add the cheddar and Gruyère and whisk until the cheeses are completely melted. Remove from the heat and whisk in the egg yolks. Fold in the macaroni and season with salt.
Evenly fill the prepared muffin tins with the macaroni and cheese, about 3/4 full. Sprinkle the Panko and cheese mixture evenly over the tops.
Bake the mini macs until they are sizzling and golden on top, about 10-12 minutes rotating the pans halfway through baking.
Remove from the oven and let the mini macs cool for 5 minutes.
Using a the edge of a small offset spatula, carefully remove the mini macs abd transfer to a platter and serve.
Enjoy!

Source: The Galley Gourmet

January 17, 2011

Mushroom Risotto

 

Mushroom Risotto

My husband’s absolute favorite side dish is risotto. Given the option of risotto and anything else, he will 100 percent of  the time choose risotto. We’ve both been traveling a lot recently (separately unfortunately), so whenever we’re home together, I find myself making risotto…a lot.

One of the best things about risotto is that depending on what you add to it, the flavor can change so dramatically. With the addition of porcini and baby bella mushrooms, you have this amazing earthy, woodsy flavor.

Thankfully, this risotto is very easy to make, and I love that it’s a way to get Francis to eat vegetables. It’s perfect for my after-work quick-cooking as well as for our fancy-dinner occasions.

Mushroom Risotto

Ingredients

2 Tbsp butter
1 cup Arborio rice
1/4 cup mushroom mix (I used baby bella and porcini mushrooms)
2 Tbsp garlic
3 cups vegetable stock
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Directions

In a medium skillet, heat 2 Tbsp butter with garlic on medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and cook 3 minutes longer.
Add Arborio Rice and cook for one minute longer, mixing with other ingredients.
Reduce heat to medium and add vegetable stock, one cup at a time, allowing it to absorb into the rice before adding another cup.
When the last cup of vegetable broth is absorbed and the rice has been cooking approximately 20 minutes (and is soft), add Parmesan cheese and allow it to melt.
Enjoy!

December 30, 2010

Roasted Potatoes and Baby Carrots

 

 

Roasted Potatoes and Carrots

The holidays are a time to indulge. Whether that’s helping yourself to an extra serving of cheesecake at the dinner table or, if you’re like me, finally going for that white truffle oil at Whole Foods just because; December is really as good a time as any to just go for it.

Last week, I was on winter break from school and found myself wandering through the aisles of Whole Foods when I started craving roasted vegetables (try browsing the vegetable section of Whole Foods and then tell me it doesn’t leave you craving delicious healthy vegetables). I picked up some baby carrots and red potatoes and roasted them with white truffle oil and you know what? Even though I was ‘indulging’ with the white truffle oil, this side made me feel a lot better about all the holiday candy that I was eating.

Roasted Potatoes and Baby Carrots

Ingredients

1 bunch baby carrots with green stems cut off to 1/4 inch
6-7 small red potatoes, chopped in quarters
1/2 tsp red peper flakes
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp dried basil
2 Tbsp garlic, minced
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Extra virgin olive oil
3-4Tbsp White Truffle Oil

Directions

In a bowl, place the red potatoes and carrots.
Add the red pepper flakes, oregano, basil, minced garlic, white truffle oil and enough extra virgin olive oil to cover the vegetables lightly.
Place vegetables in a 9×13 Pyrex dish in a single layer.
Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 30 minutes. Mix the vegetables.
Pour Parmesan cheese over vegetables.
Bake for 30 more minutes.
Enjoy!

Source: Innochka’s Kitchen