Lobsterfest: The Last Meal.

What is your Last Meal?

You know the game.  What is the last thing you would choose to eat, if you knew you had one more meal, and one more meal only?  Your Last Meal on earth.

For me, I’ve known for years.  Cape Cod lobster, corn on the cob, salad with lots of avocado, good bread with cheese.  Drawn butter with a bit of lemon thrown in on the side.  And all of it must be cooked by my Dad.  He’s the only one who gets the timing on the lobster just right, the grill marks on the corn perfectly charred, makes the salad dressing with his “secret” ingredient, chooses the right, smelly cheese – and toasts the bread.

I’m lucky enough to get to eat my Last Meal at least once or twice a summer.  This past Saturday night, I made it a third time for summer 2014.  Bonus: for dessert, we had my sister’s salted caramel wedding cake. Plus champagne. Life. Is. Good.

The Verdict:

This is my Last Meal.  Enough said.

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the best meal on earth.

Thanks, (Mom and) Dad.

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“Fried” Fish Tuesday: Haddock and Mango Salsa

Years ago, my now mother-in-law gave me a cookbook called “Healthy in a Hurry.”  At the time, the book was an eye-opener.  Here was fast, easy, and (at least in the pictures) beautiful and hopefully tasty food.  To be honest, the recipes are sometimes a little hit or miss.  But I usually learn something from making them!  Today’s was no exception.

Beer-battered Tilapia with Mango Salsa

Fish

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • dash ground cumin
  • dash salt
  • dash cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 bottle beer
  • 4 white fish filets (I used haddock)
  • oil, for the “frying”

Salsa

  • diced mango
  • diced pineapple
  • diced tomato
  • diced red onion
  • cilantro
  • salt
  • lime juice
  • dash apple cider vinegar

1. Combine the flour, cumin, salt and cayenne in a medium-sized bowl; whisk in beer to create a batter.

2. Heat oil in a large saute pan and dredge the fish in the batter.  Add the fish to the pan and cook until crispy, about 2-4 minutes per side.  Sprinkle with a healthy dose of salt right as the fish is ready to come out of the pan.

3. Serve immediately, with a large side of salsa.

The Verdict:

Won’t lie.  The fish in this one was a bit of a disappointment.  Even with the salt dosing at the end, the fish was…fishy.  And a bit flavorless.  This needed more salt.  More pepper. Maybe a good dose of lemon in the batter.  And maybe a whole other style of fish – something that actually packs some flavor.  Probably not a repeat.  The salsa, on the other hand, is a constant stand-by – great for chicken, fish, salad, the works.

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the only thing worth salvaging – the salsa did second duty as tropical bruschetta.

Manic Monday: Coconut Curry Salmon and Asian Slaw

I think it’s traditional to cook fish on Friday, but when you grocery shop on a Sunday, there’s no way you want that salmon sitting around in your fridge that long.  That is why, despite coming home late from work today with a full-on case of the Mondays, I forced myself to cook that baby up.  Note to self – that’s why planning out the week is so helpful!

Cooking Light is a standard go-to for recipe ideas.  I generally don’t quite follow them to a “T” – meaning my meals are not always fit to be called “light” – but I do enjoy pretending that I’m cooking healthfully.   This one is no exception – heavily inspired by their recipe for Coconut Curry Salmon with Basmati Rice and Snow Peas.

Coconut Curry Salmon with Asian-inspired Slaw

for the fish…

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • juice from a leftover lime and a leftover lemon
  • big spoonful of Sambal Oelek (or any type of chili paste)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can light coconut milk
  • salmon fillets, skinned
  • salt
  1. Combine the sugar, lime/lemon juice, curry paste and can of coconut milk in a large skillet, heat slightly.  Add the fish to the pan and bring it to a simmer.  Cover, reduce heat and cook about 10 minutes.  Serve over Asian slaw…below.

for the slaw…

  • one bag of cabbage/shaved brussels sprouts (from Trader Joe’s, obvi)
  • garlic
  • soy sauce
  • rice vinegar
  • sesame oil

1.  Heated two turns of dark sesame oil in a large saute pan; added the garlic for a minute or two and then the slaw.  A few turns with both the soy sauce and the rice vinegar, and then cooked it all down together.

The Verdict:

The husband makes a big point out of not liking fish, but since I plan, shop for and cook the meals, we’re slowly incorporating more fish into the diet.  He cleaned his plate on this one.  This was easy, delicious, and relatively fast.  A definite keeper, even if next time I skip the soy sauce on the slaw…too salty.