I hope you things HOT, besides the weather which here in North Cackalacky is already sweltering. Not that I should be surprised after 6 years of being here. What does surprise me is the bill. I’m thinking I should start a savings fund for said air conditioning bill. Sigh. We however are talking hot as in hot and spicy food. This week we’re partnering with TABASCO to bring you not one but FIVE hot and spicy recipes. An entire week of recipes dedicated to that little iconic bottle. You know the one. It’s pretty unmistakeably. That bottle has been gracing my family’s fridge for longer than I can remember. I’m betting it’s in most of yours too.
It’s blood orange season and I’m jumping up and down shaking my jazz hands with excitement. Okay not at this very moment, because really who can jump and type (with accuracy) at the same time. Not me. Have I mentioned I’m incredibly clumsy? There’s something about blood oranges. From their smell to their gorgeous color to the incredible tart flavor. And the fact that you can only get your hands on them for a very limited time is honestly appealing. I take it as a challenge to use as much as possible before they fade to black until next year. So far we’re off to a good start with this brown sugar blood orange glaze.
I’m so in love with the steam assist technology feature on my KitchenAid range. I’ve been blowing off steam for months now and not just vegetables mind you. You can steam everything from cheesecake (which I will be sharing with you SOON and trust me you’re going to want to make that one) to fish (at different times of course because clearly who would want to eat fish and cheesecake at the same time right?). The steam assist technology feature is such a smarty pants it takes ALL the guess work out of figuring out what temperature to steam at or for how long.Because honestly the only time I want to rack my brain with math is if I’m figuring out the % off a shoe sale or when I’m tallying up invoices. Then I’m suddenly a math whiz. Truth.
This past weekend over the Labor Day holiday we decided to pull out our little red smoker and get smokin’. We had family in town and we were putting on a serious nosh fest. I’m still wearing yoga pants and recuperating 5 days later. We had the typical pork butts (which is a word I am so not fond of, I mean it’s an awful visual and isn’t even accurate description, it’s a shoulder so why not call it that. Okay moving on. Sigh.) smoking away for hours on end that would turn into bar-b-que pulled pork deliciousness. We also decided to throw some Copper River Salmon into the smoking mix. I for one am glad that we did. It’s smoky scrumptiousness that you simply must try.
Last June in Seattle was where I had my first taste of Copper River Salmon. I have my friend Angie to thank for that. She told me that it was just THAT GOOD and I needed to try it. When I saw it on the menu at the Four Seasons a day later I ordered it immediately and well to be honest I inhaled it in just about 2 minutes. It was THAT GOOD. I have been dreaming about that salmon ever since. I waited an entire year for a second taste. Angie was the smart one, she had an entire Copper River Salmon shipped back to her house. THAT GOOD.
If I’m being honest, I have to admit that this whole having to wear shorts soon (let’s not even discuss the b word) is kind of freaking me out. It gets HAWT in Carolina people. So shorts are a necessity. One good thing about the weather is the fact that I don’t want to heat up the kitchen or the house for that matter. Cooking lighter meals is just easier for me in the spring/summer time. So what’s a girl to make besides salads? Seafood. I’ve always been a seafood fan. Fish, crab, mussels, shrimp, oysters, lobster. I’m in. The answer is always I’m in.
Oh salmon, you’re so gorgeous with your peachy pink flesh and shimmering silvery coat. You’re quick, easy and good for me (how many things can we say that about). Truth be told, I don’t eat nearly enough fish. It’s not for lack of not loving it, ’cause I do. I need to put it on my grocery list more often (naturally that will work like a charm right? I always get everything on my list – side-eye) It bakes up perfectly in about 15 minutes, and the glaze. Hold your horses on this one. It’s balsamic and raisin and will knock your socks off.
It’s all about balance. Especially during December and into the new year where although my mind wants to tell me that all those irresistible sweet holiday treats are calorie free, sadly my metabolism tells me otherwise. Uffa. So instead of boycotting them all together (because for me that’s just not an option, have you met my sweet tooth? ) I try to balance them out. Along with all those beautiful baked goods I’ve been churning out we throw in a few healthier dishes. Like this herb crusted baked cod. Would you believe me if I told you that this could be on your table in less than 30 minutes? Yes, it’s true. Healthy and quick. Winner winner fish dinner.
There are a lot of things I consider a pantry must have, balsamic vinegar happens to be in that category. It’s beyond versatile and can be used to make a million things. One of which is to drizzle it on fresh, ripe, juicy strawberries. Go ahead, do it. You’ll thank me. You can send me a bottle of really good balsamic to thank me ; ) But today we’re using it as a glaze for salmon. Did you swoon. You should.
Living so close to the coast we are definitely seafood lovers. And being so close to the water, we know good seafood when we taste it. We also know when it comes to finding authentic, superior tasting foods, origin really does matters. Today we’re going to focus on one of my favorite fish – salmon. When it comes to salmon, Norway is on top of it’s game.
After a week of sweets posts I thought I would balance things out with some healthier choices. (Don’t worry, I’ll be back to my sweets & high carbs soon enough. LOL) Summer is in full gear (at least in this part of the world) & I’m not a big fan of heating up the kitchen. So the natural alternative is the grill! Plus by grilling, you have the added benefit of NOT having extra pots & pans to clean! HOORAY! I love to cook but the dishes part, not so much. I must say the grill master or keeper of the tongs in our house is hubs, because, well, he really doesn’t like me to mess with the grill. LOL! I stick to my indoor grill.
I know this recipe is a bit of a departure for me. But fear not I’ll have two more Italian recipes coming up later this week! And you’ll just have to come back to find out which two *wink wink*
Until then, I’m really over the moon happy how this Thai inspired Tilapia turned out! This recipe came to be, because I had the crazy craving for coconut & lime and have been curious about the Thai flavors. I thought why not? So I gave it a go.
I can’t believe how rich & simply spectacular this sauce is! I know it’s a lot of ingredients, way more than I’m used to. Luckily, I had most of them (with the exception of the coconut milk & red curry paste) already in my pantry. (Once again, I really need to write that post about the importance of a well stocked pantry & should add to that spice cabinet.) It really came in handy for this recipe.
This recipe came about as many of my recipes do - I see what I have in my pantry & refrigerator & experiment away. I’m not one to waste food in the house. Sometimes they work, sometimes not so much. This time it did. Obviously, I’m not going to post the ones that didn’t. LOL
This is an incredibly quick, easy & flavorful recipe. One that even the children love (as long as I tell them it’s chicken- haha). I love Tilapia. It is a very light, flaky, white fish. If you’re not a fish person, I hope you’ll give this one a try. It’s not an overpoweringly fishy fish. The texture is soft & smooth & just melts in your mouth like buddah. I served this with my risotto (see recipe here) & it was amazing. The flavors mixed together beautifully.