This past weekend is now officially known as the Epic Weekend of Fun. Just to run some of the numbers quickly:
One dip in an ice cold river.
Not one, but two epic cover bands.
The trifecta of lunches: brisket, burgers, and fried chicken.
Five mile hike somewhere 45 minutes from the city, which felt like it was about 4500 miles from the city.
(Far too many) bottles of wine. Let’s not put a number on this one.
This week, I’m thinking about atoning for our sins (side note: this seems to be a theme around here). To the Husband’s chagrin, this means hitting up the fish train. Honey: welcome to tonight’s dinner.
Asian-Inspired Grilled Salmon
about 4-5 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon Sriracha
1/2 inch ginger, grated
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound salmon fillets, skin on
1 bag arugula/baby kale/spinach
1 bell pepper, sliced
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1/2 avocado, sliced
cilantro, to serve
In a small bowl, combine soy sauce through garlic and mix well. Set aside about a third of the mixture to act as your dressing later on. In a large flat bottom bowl, pour the soy sauce mixture and lay the salmon, flesh side down (to increase absorption). Let it sit for about 20-30 minutes – any longer and the soy sauce will start to toughen up the protein.
Heat a grill pan over medium heat and coat with cooking spray. Add salmon, flesh side down, and grill about 4-5 minutes. Using tongs, flip to the other side and grill until the middle is no longer pink. The skin will sort of neatly fall away from the fish as you remove it.
Assemble your salad ingredients (arugula through avocado) and lay your cooked fish on top. Dress with the reserve soy sauce mixture + feel virtuous.
This is a super easy, super quick way to feel super virtuous and healthy. Of course, we’ll be taking our nightly trip to Mr. Yogato right after this. We finally have enough stamps for a free fro-yo! #theepicweekendcontinues
All of the Safeway grocery stores in DC have an alliterative descriptor, ranging from the innocuous to the offensive.
There’s the Social Safeway up in Georgetown (also sometimes known as the Single Safeway), where it’s rumored you can pick up a date (it’s also just the closest Safeway to the Georgetown campus). There’s the (former) Secret Safeway, which no one could ever find – (now a ridiculously delicious small-batch grocery store; if you visit DC, you must eat their kale slaw). There’s the Senior Safeway, located by the Watergate, where some of our more…experienced citizens live.
And there’s the Safeway closest to us, not-so-affectionately known as the Soviet Safeway. This nickname is based on two primary reasons: 1. its inability to stock fresh bread and anything but the most wilted of vegetables; and 2. its obscenely long lines.
All of this is a (very long) say of saying I don’t buy fresh fish often. The Husband loves this, as he’s just not into fish. As someone who negotiates with my sister for the last piece of lox, I feel differently.
This salmon (not from Safeway) was amazing – recipe based on Cooking Light‘s. It takes a while – but none of it is hands-on; make it the night before, spend a few quick minutes before you leave for work in the morning, and it’s ready in 20 minutes after you get home. I promise it will make for a very fiesta-y Friday.
Roasted Salmon with Horseradish and Homemade Dill Creme Fraiche
**if you want enough creme fraiche to adequately feed more than 2 people, would suggest doubling the ingredients starting with heavy cream going through s&p**
about 1 pound salmon (this is enough for 2 people, with leftovers for lunch)
Prepare creme fraiche: before you go to bed, combine cream, buttermilk and vinegar in a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature, about 8 hours. When you wake up, add the dill, about 1/8 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Cover again and refrigerate, about 8-12 hours. You’ll have a lovely, tangy sauce when you get home from work.
Prepare horseradish “marinade:” combine a pinch of salt, pepper, horseradish, parsley, shallots, capers and olive oil in a small bowl. Mix thoroughly, and then spread over the salmon fillets. Cover and refrigerate, about 8-12 hours.
Cook fish: preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place fish (skin side down) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast for about 12-15 minutes, or until done. Serve with creme fraiche and a side of simple, roasted asparagus (which magically takes the same amount of time as the fish!).
The Husband cleaned his plate. I nearly licked mine. Pack any leftover fish with a bit of spinach and a dollop of the sauce, and have yourself a merry little lunch. Also: when was the last (or any, in my case) time you made your own creme fraiche!? There’s something that’s definitely not stocked at our Safeway.
It’s one of my New Year’s resolutions: cook more fish at home (sorry, Husband-who-doesn’t-like-fish). The only problem is: I don’t actually like the smell of fish lingering in my kitchen after I grill or saute it. In general, I use the oven to bake fish (a little soy sauce, a little brown sugar, and poof! Dinner!), but I wondered: could the solution be even easier? As in, could I, as in all things tasty and easy, use my crockpot?
It turns out, yes, yes I can, and so can the Husband, who executed this recipe, inspired by Williams Sonoma.
Slow-Braised Salmon with Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce
for the salmon
about 1/2 cup veggie, seafood, or chicken stock
1 cup dry white wine
1 small onion, sliced
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme (or dill, which pairs great with salmon, but I can never find)
as many salmon fillets as you can stand to eat (or fit in your crockpot without layering)
fresh ground pepper
baby spinach, for serving
for the sauce
1 shallot, diced
about a cup plain greek yogurt
1 tablespoon light mayo
another sprig or two of thyme, twiggy parts discarded
fresh parsley, chopped (the Husband used cilantro, which, if you’re like me, you’ll also find works, despite the weird-sounding combo. Parsley would work slightly better with the lemony notes of thyme, though.)
pinch ground cumin
2-3 small cucumbers, diced
optional: wedge lemon
In your crockpot (yay!), combine the stock, wine, onion, thyme, salt, pepper and about a 1/2 cup of water. Stir, cover, and cook on low for 30 minutes.
Add salmon, skin side down, cover, grind a little bit of pepper on top, and cook on low for about an hour. The fish will turn opaque and be completely, deliciously tender.
As the fish cooks, whisk together the yogurt, a touch of mayo, shallot, more thyme, parsley, pinch cumin and the cucumber. Season with salt and pepper and if you so desire, a squeeze of lemon.
Serve the salmon on top of the baby spinach and spoon the sauce over each fillet; garnish with parsley. Eat up.
The Husband smothered his in sauce, but he declared this highly edible, if not outright…good. I loved this – so easy, so tasty, so healthy, and delicious the next day, served cold with a salad of spinach and avocado. Bonus: you can eat as many chocolate-covered pretzels as you like after this; you earned them.