Dear Scallops, I love you sizzling hot and topped with glorious sauce… a buttery wine sauce. Although I love you dearly, our relationship is short-lived for you are far too delicious to stick around for very long. Sin-sear-ly, Deanna
Rinse scallops (a few up to 1 pound) well before cooking if they came packed in juices.
Preheat pan to medium-high with a tablespoon or two of olive oil. Pat dry scallops with paper towels. Season one side with sea salt & pepper.
Cook with seasoned side down first. Salt & pepper the unseasoned side while the first side cooks. Sear until medium brown and no longer stick to the pan. Do not overload & stack scallops in the pan.
Continue cooking until second side is seared to a medium brown as well.
PAN SAUCE INGREDIENTS:
2 cups sherry wine
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 clove minced garlic
2 teaspoons crushed red peppers
1-2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
2 tablespoons butter
Leaves from 5 sprigs fresh thyme, minced
Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh basil, minced
Reduce heat to medium. Remove scallops from pan and set aside while making pan sauce. Pour sherry wine into pan. This is called “deglazing the pan”. The end results are delicious.
Add mustard, garlic, crushed red pepper, Old Bay Seasoning and salt & pepper.
Whisk in butter until melted and toss in minced fresh herbs to finish.
If sauce appears to separate, just reduce heat a bit & add more wine to save it.
Serve with sauce and enjoy with pasta, potatoes or a lovely, fresh green salad.
While rewatching my calorie-laden episode of My Family Recipe Rocks again last night, I was caught off guard by a commercial for a weight gain pill that aired somewhere between the extra-cheesy scalloped potatoes and my mud pie that requires three gallons of ice cream to create. I mean, all this time I could have taken a pill instead of eating extra-cheesy scalloped potatoes and mud pie? Silly me. Now, bring on the beer battered fish and chips…
Canola or vegetable oil for frying
2 egg yolks, beaten
12 ounces of your favorite pilsner beer
1 3/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (plus more for sprinkling)
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon paprika
2.5 pounds fresh halibut
Preheat oil in a heavy-duty deep pan or in a deep fryer to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with two or three layers of paper towels.
Make sure the oil maintains this same temperature throughout the cooking process.
Whisk together egg yolks, beer, flour, baking powder, sea salt, onion powder, and paprika in a medium-large bowl.
Rinse the fish with cold water and then pat dry with a paper towel. Cut into 1-2 inch pieces – whichever you prefer – but make sure that all the pieces are as close to the same size as possible so that they all cook in the same amount of time.
Using tongs, place a few pieces of fish in the tempura batter. Use tongs to help coat the fish. Carefully place coated fish in the preheated oil. Use the tongs to adjust fish as needed. Cook for about 3-5 minutes, perhaps longer for larger pieces.
Remove fish from deep fryer when done. Place on paper towel-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with a wee bit of salt.
Enjoy while hot.
If you’d like to use frozen halibut, be sure to defrost and pat dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture before cooking.
If you like, you can add the “chips” or fries. I mean, since you have the deep fryer out and all. Cut about 4 russet potatoes into a French fry cut (mandolin works perfectly for this). Deep fry for about three minutes at 350 degrees to blanch. Allow to cool on paper towel-lined baking sheet while you cook the fish. Place fries back into deep fryer again and cook for about 5 more minutes or until golden brown. Place back onto baking sheet when done and lightly coat with sea salt.
All of this crispy, golden loveliness is not to be confused with a weight gain pill. You know, just in case you might have gotten them mixed up or something. Please pass the fries. And an apple.
I present thee with reason number 139,274 as to why I love Twitter. Meet Smoked Salmon Flatbread.
And one of the original reasons I love Twitter? Well, that would be my friend, Imelda. Imelda and I met through Twitter and after she came out to have lunch at our bed & breakfast, we found we had a kindred connection. It wasn’t long before we started having tweet-ups with other friends from Twitter.
Imelda hosted one of these events. Everything she does speaks volumes about how much she loves people. She is a creative soul with a great sense of humor. And the woman seriously knows how to dress a table.
At this gathering, I gave all of our friends a little gift. I decorated some little boxes with tweets from well-known or local Tweeps.
At Imelda’s party, she served some stand out dishes as well. One of them was this fresh and flavor-filled Smoked Salmon Flatbread. I’ll be making this again and again.
You can use two – 12 inch Boboli pizza crusts or make this easy homemade flatbread. Preheat oven to 425F.
3/4 cup warm water (no more than 110 degrees)
1 teaspoon yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups flour
Place water, yeast and sugar in mixing bowl. Cover and allow to sit in a warm place until a bit foamy to activate yeast. This usually takes about 10 minutes.
Place bowl on mixer stand and using a dough hook attachment, add olive oil and salt. Then slowly add in flour while mixer is on a medium-low speed. Add until dough begins to “hug” the dough hook like in the picture above.
Remove from mixer stand and cover and let sit for another 30 minutes or until dough has about doubled in size. If you’d like to make the dough the day before you need it, you can do that as well & just keep it in the fridge overnight to rise.
Roll flatbread out into shape of your pan. This crust makes enough to cover about a 1/2 sheet pan.
Yeah. Like that. Bake until light golden brown which might take about 15 minutes. When done baking, remove from oven and brush with butter.
Ahhhhh…. mise en place.
1 cup Sour Cream
1 lemon, juiced
1 package fresh dill (snipped)
8 oz. smoked salmon
1/2 English Cucumber – thinly sliced
1/2 red onion – finely chopped or thinly sliced
3 T capers, drained
Gather ingredients for toppings while flatbread bakes.
Mix Sour cream, lemon, dill and salt to taste then refrigerate while the flatbread bakes at the suggested temperature.
Slice cucumbers and red onions very thin. A mandoline is handy for this.
Let flatbread cool completely. Spread the sour cream mixture on the cooled flatbread. Place cucumber on sour cream.
Place salmon on cucumber.
Spread red onion and capers on top of the salmon. Cut the pizza into wedges. If using for an appetizer, just cut into smaller pieces. This recipe is lovely for such a thing as it makes so much. Transfer to a platter to serve.
Who knew Twitter would become responsible for kindred connections? Then again, Imelda’s Smoked Salmon Flatbread will accomplish the same.
My love for people with accents (since I, of course, do not have one) began when I would travel around the country to camps. My friends and I would sit and listen to our newly acquired friends from different states for hours. We’d all laugh together about how different we sounded. North Dakota was one of my favorites. I came to love copying accents. It’s become a hobby, really.
Through the years, I’ve discovered which accent I speak in the best, which one makes me sound angriest even while I’m laughing and which one sounds best when writing a recipe. And with that, I present thee with Seared Scallops With Peach Salsa while using a Norwegian accent. You’re welcome.
Make da peach salsa so dat all the parts have da chance to get to know one anudder real vell while you make da scallops.
Ya sure, you betcha, some dose scallops come packed in da juices. Be sure to rinse dem real well.
Den pat dem dry with da paper towel and salt them real good all on dat one side dere.
Place dem all salt side down into da pan heated with da olive oil den salt & pepper da other side, like dat dere, don’t ya know? Cook dem ’til dey are da beautiful medium brown on da first side. If you try to lift dem up too early, you’ll know dey aren’t ready to flip jus yet because dey will stick to da pan ven you try to do da flippin’.
Cook da second side ’til dey medium brown as vell. Uffda.
Top with dat dere peach salsa. It’s real good, don’t ya know? Dat is fresh stuff dere. So ven you have da next pardy you have, be sure to invite da friends from all over da vorld and have da jolly laughs over dose dere accents and eat da scallops together. Den you can be thankful da recipe was not for da pickled herring and dat will make you feel good all over.
Summer dishes should be colorful. Summer recipes should require very little, if any, cooking. Summer recipes should be something like this…
2 pounds small tomatoes (the more colorful, the better)
9.5 ounces artichoke hearts packed in water (not marinade)
8 ounces smoked salmon
This salad is so tasty and so healthy it can be served as a lovely side dish. Add some rustic, artisan bread and you have a refreshing meal.
First go outside and pick a couple of pounds of colorful, small tomatoes. Or, you know, go buy some.
Then buy some smoked salmon and artichoke hearts packed in water. Make sure artichoke have been cut into quarters. If not, then cut the few that aren’t so they are easier to eat. Toss salad ingredients into a bowl then make the dressing.
Juice from 1 fresh lemon
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar
Salt & pepper to taste
Place all dressing ingredients in a container with a lid and shake until emulsified. Drizzle over salad and give salad a gentle toss until all ingredients mixed. Add a little salt & pepper if needed.
How lovely to be able to keep these ingredients on hand in case a friend pops in for lunch or dinner. This salad stores well in the fridge too – just a little added bonus.
I feel thinner, more refreshed and summery just looking at it.
Fresh. Fried. Sweet. Savory. The gang’s all here to please you.
Although this recipe takes a little effort, it brings a big pay off with delicious flavors.
First, prepare cilantro by tearing leaves off stems and placing leaves in container. Set aside.
COCONUT SHRIMP & SALAD INGREDIENTS:
One bunch fresh cilantro
One pound shrimp from the seafood department
Fresh ground pepper
3 large eggs
2 cups coconut
2 cups panko bread crumbs
Canola oil, Crisco shortening (melted) or vegetable oil
One 12 ounce bag broccoli slaw
One 8 ounce bag sugar snap peas
Give the shrimp a quick cold water rinse. Toss with some salt & pepper. If you like, now is a good time to remove the tails. I keep them on as it makes eating the shrimp more of an adventure.
Beat together three eggs in a bowl. Mix in a dash of salt and set aside.
Place panko bread crumbs, coconut and some salt & pepper in a bowl. Toss to mix and set aside.
Ready for the breading line up. Preheat pan with enough oil to cover bottom of pan to a medium-high heat.
Dip shrimp in eggs and then in coating then place in hot pan.
Cook until first side is golden brown then flip to cook other side.
If you can’t fit all the shrimp in one pan at a time, you may need to clean out oil and start fresh for multiple batches to prevent coconut leftovers from burning and tainting the flavors of your shrimp.
One 14 ounce jar orange marmalade
1/2 cup sugar
1-2 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2-3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3/4 cup cold water
One 11 ounce can whole peeled Mandarin orange segments (with juices)
Fresh ground pepper
Place orange marmalade, sugar, red pepper flakes, Chinese five spice, garlic, and soy sauce in pan. Whisk together over medium heat.
Whisk cornstarch and cold water together well in a small bowl. Pour into saucepan and stir together with sauce.
Stir in can of Mandarin oranges and juices. Stir until sauce comes to a boil. After the cornstarch does it’s thickening magic, remove from heat. Add salt & pepper to taste.
Place broccoli slaw in a serving dish, add sugar snap peas. Top with shrimp then with sauce and finish with cilantro.
When serving shrimp with tails, remember to provide a small dish for discarded tails.
And this shall balance out thy sins of this, this and especially this. Amen.
I’m not a big seafood fan but I do love salmon. I also love that salmon is so easy to cook and can be enhanced with so many various simple recipes. Sweet, lemony or this simple salmon…
A tip when it comes to shopping for salmon is to buy the wild salmon. Farm fed salmon is often mushy and nearly flavorless. Always wait for the wild salmon! I purchased this awhile back and just froze it for another time – still a hundred times better than the farm fed salmon.
First, line a baking sheet with at least one inch sides with foil. Salmon skin tends to stick to the foil (instead of the baking sheet), making clean up easier.
Cut 6-8 thin squares of butter. I heart little squares of butter.
Place salmon pieces on foil and place butter squares on top of salmon as pictured above. Season to your liking. A house seasoning such as Spike or Johnny’s will work great along with some salt & pepper.
Bake at 350 degrees for about a half an hour or until salmon reaches 145 degrees in the middle of the thickest area of the salmon. When fully cooked, you can drizzle fresh lemon juice over the salmon for added flavor if you like.
Now for the easy cheesy rice. Place two cups of long grain basmati or jasmine rice into rice cooker.
Pour 2 cups of water over rice.
While rice is cooking in rice cooker, place a tablespoon of olive oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Place about a half of a chopped yellow onion and a couple of tablespoons of crushed or minced garlic into oil to cook. Heat until onions look somewhat clear.
Add 1 1/2 – 2 cups of chicken broth or milk to the saucepan.
Add the cooked rice into the saucepan and stir.
Stir in about 1 1/2 cups of your favorite cheese. This recipe would be especially wonderful with sharp cheddar or even a few different kinds of cheeses.
Finally, toss in about 1/2 cup of chopped celery and salt & pepper to taste. Stir for the finish.
Scoop cheesy rice up with a measuring cup or some other fun shaped container and plate with the oh so lovely simple salmon. If you like, use a decorating bag to swirl some sour cream on top of the rice and add some chopped green onions for flavor and beauty.
It has been a pretty soggy spring in the Seattle area. I keep telling myself that the dripage will bring an extra beautiful summer but since my seeds keep getting moldy before they have a chance to sprout, maybe not. I can always be thankful for the evergreen trees, fish and cute rain boots… minus the time that group of senior citizens made fun of them.
I keep wanting to make summer dishes but instead find myself drowning in pots of homemade chicken noodle soup in May and the giggles of senior citizens making fun of my fashionable rain boots in June. I forgive them because they just don’t understand how desperate we are to have fashion while we puddle walk…. that, and they were the cutest group of people I have ever seen.
Desperate for newness, I made this pasta dish the other night. It was delightfully fresh yet still cozy. It sparked a memory in me that I’m going to admit to you now. This is just between you and I so don’t go laughing all the way to Twitter with this or anything, okay? I could lose followers if this gets out. I learned how to properly cook noodles in my thirties. Yep, it’s true.
Okay, you back now?“Human salvation demands the divine disclosure of truths surpassing reason.” – Saint Thomas Aquinas. Yep, pretty sure I have surpassed reason with many things that I have disclosed in my life. I am now healing from the healing process. Anyhow, back to the noodles.
Just in case anyone else is still suffering from the same newlywed wife brain dysfunction that I had, I am about to teach you how to cook noodles.
Gladys, I do believe she must be knee-deep in those ding-dang boots again. She ain’t thinkin’ straight.
Ignore the voices. I understand your dilemma. You are ready for adulthood but you watch as others are trying to smile as they suffer through your first homemade meal but they cannot smile because their teeth are sticking together from your half crunchy, half mushy pasta.
You watched your mom cook all those years. How could you not know how to cook? Girls, it’s because we were teenagers and we thought we knew everything so we only half paid attention. Please allow me to spare you any future embarrassment and allow you to shine at the dinner table!
Using your noodle to cook perfect pasta
1. Put 16-20 cups* of water in a large pot.*
2. Wait for water to boil.*
3. Add 16 ounces of pasta to boiling water.
4. Stir the pasta right after you put it in the water & stir occasionally during cooking.*
5. Follow the package directions for cooking times.* If the pasta is to be used as part of a dish that requires further cooking, under cook the pasta by 1/3 of the cooking time on the package.
6. Taste the pasta to determine if it is done.” Pasta should be “al dente,” or firm to the bite, yet cooked through. Drain pasta immediately* and stir in about a tablespoon of olive oil for added flavor & to help prevent stickiness.
*These items are the most common pasta cooking mistakes. Change your heedless ways and you too can make perfect pasta every time! For example, if you do not drain the pasta immediately, the pasta will keep cooking while sitting in the water even if it’s off the burner since the water is very hot.
Okay, back to our recipe. Cook one pound of perfect pasta and come along with me… the benefit from coming along with me is that you will never have to live with someone else taking credit for every good recipe you ever made just because someone taught you late in life how to cook a noodle. Girl power!
Place a couple of tablespoons of olive oil into a frying pan and turn to medium heat.
Add about 6-8 ounces of cod (more or less is fine) and a dash of salt & pepper & fry about 10 minutes on each side.
As the noodle instructions say above, stir a tablespoon or two of olive oil into your perfect noodles.
Add the zest and juice of one lemon (watch for seeds). I can smell summer already, California summer, that is.
Now comes the fun part. Seasonings! First, grate a couple (or more, if you like) cloves of garlic. I bought this handy set and love it. It makes a very fine grated garlic which I adore. It blends into my recipes so nicely.
Flake cod into bite size pieces. Add cod & garlic to pasta.
Chop a few tablespoons each of fresh flat leaf parsley, chervil, and oregano. Cool thing is that you can play with various herbs like thyme, sage, dill or cilantro. Add what you like! In fact, if you can cook perfect pasta, you can grow your own herb garden. Best part is, herbs love cruddy, sandy soil and they come back year after year! They are the perfect garden for a girl who has the boots for gardening but no patience for it. Add salt & pepper to taste and stir.
Ahhhhh… “Life is a combination of magic and pasta.” – Federico Fellini
Easy to prepare dinners are a must for this innkeeper, blogger, wife & mom of two teenagers. Sometimes I am so busy with food blogging that my family makes dinner – go figure. If you can relate to a busy life, please read on. I think you will enjoy this very, very easy and yummy baked cod recipe!
I started with a large package of cod but any amount is just fine. If you’re cooking for two you can, of course, use 6-7 ounces instead.
Cut into about 3-4 inch pieces.
Dip (or bathe) pieces one by one in an ocean of melted butter.
Place 1-2 cups of your favorite croutons into a food processor (depending on how much cod you need to cover). Then dip buttered pieces of cod into the the crumbled croutons. Press breading on to get the best coating.
Place into a baking pan (one with sides) and drizzle remaining butter over cod and then sprinkle remaining crouton crumbs over cod. Bake fish about 25 minutes or until it’s obviously deliciously flakey.
Serve with a tasty side dish and you can’t go wrong! These are at least a little healthier than fried and you can tell fish stories about how long and difficult of a process it was for you to make them.
I am a happy girl as I sit here in front of my Mac, sipping hot coffee from my “Life is Good” mug.
I love “Life is Good” products. They remind me of the simple truth that life really is good every time that I use them. I went to a store that was going out of business the other day hoping to scoop up a new “Life is Good” shirt and, instead, walked out with the “Life is Good” display coffee table for the inn! I’ve been looking for the perfect coffee table for months and finally fell in love with this one! Ahhh… life really is good.
I heart having a small business! You get to meet such great people. I went to a tourism meeting this week and met the Mayor of Mercer Island, Jim Pearman; the project planner of Grimaldi’s Coffee House, Tanya Alter and Will Parkinson from the Hilton Garden Inn in Issaquah. What great people! I’ve found that most business owners are big-hearted people who really want to make a difference in the world.
On a side note, I had to take a Jag to the meeting. Bummer, huh? It was a lot of fun to drive. I’ve always liked the look of Jaguars but, whoa baby, do they drive nice and it had an awesome stereo too!
It has been a busy week since as well. We celebrated a birthday with a shin-dig and cooked a live lobster. Here’s the scoop in picture form:
Poor little guy
Sunburned after about 45 minutes of boiling (about 12 minutes per pound)
I know, I know but I just couldn’t resist. Me? I have officially decided that I do not like lobster. I wish I liked red wine and lobster but I do not enjoy either one so I had Jack & the Box tacos for dinner. There is no hope for me.
Deanna’s love for baking and cooking began as she sat upon a baker’s stool as a little girl. Her love for people grew in the midst of church potlucks. She expresses her loves today creatively through speaking, writing for her foodie blog as well as hosting guests, including celebrities, at her award-winning B&B in Snoqualmie Valley, Washington.