Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Best Broccoli You Will Ever Eat

I have lately become addicted to Pinterest. If you're not on Pinterest yet, it's a virtual pinboard for everything interesting on the Internet. You can see how it could become a major timesuck. Crafts, kids' activity ideas, fashion how-tos, decor, and of course recipes all pop up and you can pin them to various boards so you can view them later all in one location, rather than sorting through infinite bookmarks.

So this recipe popped up the other day and I had to try it, as I had fresh broccoli in the fridge. And, that was a mighty bold statement that I thought required a challenge. It. Was. Delicious. And so easy! It's nice to be able to throw it in the oven so you can focus on other aspects of your meal. My tips: stir at least once partway through cooking. The kids thought it was a little too lemony I think but Mark and I loved it.

Rather than repost, here you go:

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Spice Crusted Salmon Fillets with Curried Beets

Its beet season and that is a happy time of year for me. I love beets, I'm sure I have mentioned that before but it bears repeating. There is something about the earthy sweetness of a roasted beet that just sings fall to me. Because of their strong flavor they also handle other strong flavors really well so they make a great canvas for spice. I put salmon into that same category, as a fish it has a strong distinct flavor that works really well with bold flavors. I started roasting the beets well ahead of time for this dish so plan on at least an hour of cook time.

You will need

For the Beets:
3-4 large beets
olive oil
curry powder

For the Salmon:
2 (or more salmon fillets)
olive oil
Dinosaur BBQ  All Purpose Red Rub*

Optional Ingredients
Cumin Seeds
Cardamom pods

Vegetable oil for cooking

Preheat your oven to 350
Peel and slice the beets into roughly 1/4 inch think slices. I cut mine in half so you should have 1/2 moon shaped slices. Put the sliced beets onto a glass baking dish, drizzle on some olive oil and toss to coat.  Sprinkle on some kosher salt (2 tsps maybe) some fresh black pepper and a couple of tsp of your favorite curry powder. Toss again to coat and place them in the over for about an hour. They should be cooked through but still have a firm bite in the middle.

When you have about 10 minutes of cook time left on the beets its time to handle your salmon. I used skin on fillets but you can easily use skinless ones. Rub some olive oil on the fish to coat and rub both sides with your red rub to form a nice coat (only one side if you have skin on fillets, it won't penetrate the skin)

Heat some vegetable oil (not olive oil its smoke point is too low) in a heavy deep frying pan, your oil should be about 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep. If you want, you can add some cumin seeds and cardamom pods to the oil as it heats to flavor the oil. I added them to pick up on the flavors of the curry on the beets.

When the oil is very hot, just before it smokes, add the salmon skin side down if you have skin on, otherwise it won't matter. Cook for 2-3 minutes on the first side, you should see the fish changing color as it cooks. When it is cooked through to a depth of about 1/4 inch its time to flip. Flip the fish over to the other side and cook another 3-4 minutes. The outside edges should appear to be uniform in color. Don't go to long or the salmon will dry out quickly. Remove the cooked fish to a plate to rest for a couple minutes then place it on a pile of your cooked beets.

Serve with a nice green salad or some wilted greens and you have a delicious complete meal.

The Dinosaur red rub is a staple for me, I use it on all kinds of things from beef, to pork, to chicken to fish. Make up a big batch and store in an airtight container, it keeps for a long time.

1/2 cup paprika
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated garlic
6 Tbsp granulated onion
1/4 cup chili powder
1 Tbsp black pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne

Mix it all together well and rub it on anything.