Jan 062018

grilled new york steaks and quinoa

Whew! I was feeling so lazy tonight I almost punted on dinner. Instead, I got my rear off the couch, to the store to get a propane refill, and grilled New York steaks. To go with I made quinoa in the Instant Pot (1 minute on high pressure and you’ve got the best, fluffiest quinoa ever), green salad, and grilled sweet and green onions. Shout out to A for the salad, Dad for the grilling advice, Double DD Meats for the beautiful steaks, and my headlamp for letting me see what the heck I was doing out in the dark.

Tilapia with Quinoa Mango Cucumber Salad

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Sep 022013

This was a fun meal to make – my daughter helped me make the salad and the whole time she kept commenting on how beautiful the produce was, how delicious the cucumbers and mangoes were, and how I had to be sure to post this on my blog because it’s such a yummy salad.

It’s always so gratifying when anyone likes what you cook, isn’t it? Especially when it’s your child, who has emerged from the picky preschooler years into a much better eater. Of course my son is right in the midst of not eating anything that doesn’t  have a face (he’s a total carnivore) so he turned his nose up at the salad. Someday he’ll eat it though, I’m sure.

This was a total throw-together salad, so there aren’t hard and fast measurements for it – here’s how I made it. Cook 1/2 cup quinoa according to the package directions while you chop the other ingredients. Cut up a mango (I like to use a slightly underripe one so it’s a bit firmer and not quite so sweet), an avocado and an english cucumber into cubes, and dice half a red onion. Juice two limes into a salad bowl, add some olive oil (a few glugs), a generous pinch of kosher salt and some grinds of black pepper and beat it all with a fork to combine it into a dressing. Add the veggies to the bowl, stir them around and let them marinate while the quinoa cooks. When the quinoa’s done, add it to the veggies in the bowl, mix everything up and then chill it in the fridge until you’re ready to eat.

I served the salad with a sauteed filet of tilapia, seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic and cumin – of course the kiddos eat that like candy so all in all a successful meal.

Cook the Collection #5: Simply Classic

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May 092013
(Disclosure: The cookbook links below are affiliate links and if you happen to make a purchase through them I’ll receive a few cents of your purchase – and of course would be so grateful!)

Let me just start by saying if anyone ever wants to invite me to anything hosted by a Junior Leaguer I’m in -because apparently those Junior League ladies can cook!  I’m so excited to be able to tell you all about  Simply Classic: A New Collection of Recipes to Celebrate the Northwest, compiled by the Junior League of Seattle. This is one of my top five cookbooks and everything I’ve made from it has been delicious. Not only that, the recipes always get rave reviews – this is my go-to cookbook when I need a no-fail potluck dish or family dinner contribution. You can tell that these are recipes from real-world kitchens – with easy-to-find ingredients and common equipment they are easy to replicate at home. The recipes are comfort food with a Northwest twist, new American cooking with a global hint. Some of my favorites are the Tomato & Basil Tart, Sweet & Spicy Black Bean Salad, Green Bean & Feta Salad and Northwest Stew with Dried Cherries.

The book is a joy to flip through and read as well – illustrated with beautiful paintings of classic Seattle scenes, menus to suit any Pacific Northwest occasion and recipe head-notes that evoke a certain iconic Seattle style. I love to give this book as a gift and it would be perfect as a souvenir of Seattle or for someone with a special spot in their heart for the city.

I’ve cooked from this book many many times before, but for the purpose of the Cook the Collection challenge I prepared the Northwest Autumn Salad at a family gathering this past weekend.  This is one of my go-to green salad recipes and although it’s titled as an autumn salad, the dressing is light enough for any time of year and lends itself so well to adaptations. Of course I made a number of changes (I just can’t help myself) – pears instead of apples, walnuts instead of pecans and lime juice for lemon juice. We ate it alongside a knock-out grilled pork tenderloin and a simple fruit salad that was just right.

I’m sharing this post at some of these great link parties – check ’em out!

Happy Independence Day!

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Jul 052012

Oooh, I almost forgot to post tonight! My project today was food for our holiday celebration – olive tapanade, Mediterranean bean salad, steaks and grilled corn.

I got the recipe for the bean salad here – it’s Easy Mediterranean Bean Salad and it certainly was easy, but it tasted completely bland to me, so if I do attempt it again its going to get vamped up somehow.

Grilled corn is so so good – I wish I had some more right now!

 We finished the night with a campfire and s’mores – I was restrained and didn’t eat nearly as many as I could have – s’mores might be my favorite dessert of all time, except that I forget that until summer rolls around again.

Patio Supper

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Jun 252012

We finally had a weekend afternoon that we could spend outside, visiting, cooking and playing. I made a Peruvian onion relish (salsa criolla) to serve with grilled sausages and a grilled pepper salad.
The relish is made with thinly sliced red onions, jalapeños, mint, lime juice, cider vinegar and salt.

After its all mixed together it sits for a few hours to let the flavors meld and the onions wilt and pickle in the vinegar and lime juice.

We also snacked on Rainier cherries

and invented a new cocktail. It still needs a name – it’s limes muddled with sugar and fresh oregano, gin, ice and tonic. Sooo summery!

Mother’s Day Entertaining, Part One

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May 132012

Today we had Bappa and Nana over for dinner for birthdays and Mother’s Day celebrating. I made a green bean salad from the Simply Classic cookbook (to go along with chicken and veggie skewers and white rice).

I also updated the chalkboard entry table:

Mar 162012

Oooh-eee I was inspired tonight! I didn’t set out to make this dinner but as I got ready to cook it all came together, which is my favorite kind of cooking.

We had tilapia filets pan fried in olive oil, seasoned with garlic salt, pepper, oregano and a dash of cayenne pepper. When the filets were done I took them out of the pan, lowered the heat and made a quick pan sauce with lemon juice (from two lemons), capers (about two teaspoons), and a knob of butter (about a tablespoon).

I served the fish with steamed brown rice and a Greek salad composed of cucumber, tomato (tasteless – I should have known better), feta and a Greek olive mix from the grocery store olive bar. The salad was dressed with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper and oregano.

Yum yum yum! We thought it was delicious, and even the kids ate all their fish (sans sauce) and some cucumbers.