Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Baked Pineapple Asian Salmon

I'm always trying new ways to make salmon because we eat it at least once a week and this recipe is my new favorite!  The sauce is sweet with a little spice, it carmelizes onto the salmon making it so flavorful.   I first saw a video for this recipe on delish.com that came up on my facebook page.  It's easy to make, easy cleanup (cover pan with foil or parchment paper) and delish!

When broiled the sauce will caramelize and this is why you'll want to use foil.  Easy cleanup!

This is the Sweet Chili Sauce that I use.

12-16 pineapple slices, fresh (3-4 slices for each piece of salmon)
4 portions of salmon fillet (skin off)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp. melted butter
3 tbsp. sweet chili sauce
2 tbsp. freshly chopped cilantro
cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. freshly grated ginger
2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
1/8 -1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Toasted sesame seeds and sliced green onion, for garnish

Lime wedges, for serving

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. On the foil, lay 3-4 pineapple slices per each piece of salmon.
  1. Season the salmon lightly with salt and pepper and place on top of pineapple slices.
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together butter, chili sauce, cilantro, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, and red pepper flakes. Brush all over the top of the salmon fillets.
  1. Bake until the salmon is cooked through, about 25 minutes. Switch the oven to broil, and broil for 2 minutes, or until fish is slightly golden. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onions and serve with lime wedges.
4 servings

  1. *delish.com - cooks one large (3lb) piece of salmon but I like to do individual pieces.  I think it's easier to serve, cooks more evenly, and everyone gets their own piece with 4 slices of pineapple.


Thursday, September 12, 2019

Really Good for you Chicken Soup

Fall is in the air so I made soup!  I had seen this recipe called "The Best Chicken Soup You'll Ever Eat" and I had to try it for myself.  The verdict, I loved this soup but I can't really say it was the best I've ever eaten.  What I will say is this soup is super flavorful and packed with healthy ingredients.  It will be my go-to soup when I'm feeling under the weather. With these anti-inflammatory, cold-fighting ingredients, ginger, turmeric, and garlic.  It also calls for fresh thyme and fresh rosemary, which I still have growing in my herb garden.  I love to use my fresh herbs when I can because I know soon the cooler weather will be here and they'll be done for.  I love soup season!
Ingredients:  avocado oil, garlic, onion, carrots, celery, ginger, turmeric, chicken broth, rotisserie chicken (not shown), rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, pearl couscous and peas
I did make a couple changes from the original recipe.  I used rotisserie chicken instead of chicken breast and cut down on the amount of couscous.  You can find the original recipe here, Ambitious Kitchen.

1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
1 cup yellow onion, diced
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1 cup thinly sliced celery
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
6 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon freshly chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme, stems removed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 Freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup pearl couscous (make sure it's pearl couscous, it's like tiny pasta)
1 rotisserie chicken, shredded (I used about 1lb and saved the remainder for chicken salad)
2/3 cup frozen peas

1. Place a large dutch oven or pot over medium-high heat and add in oil. Once the oil is hot, add in onion, carrots, and celery; cook for 5 minutes until onion becomes translucent.
2. Next, add in the minced garlic, grated ginger and stir for a minute.  Stir in the ground turmeric and saute for 30 seconds to let the spice cook a bit, then add in chicken broth, rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper.
3. Bring soup to a boil, then stir in couscous.  Reduce heat to medium and on a slow boil cook uncovered for 20-30 minutes or until carrots are tender.  Add shredded chicken and frozen peas.  Heat for a few minutes to cook peas.  Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.  Enjoy!


Friday, August 9, 2019

Outstanding in the Field

My husband and I were in Door County last weekend celebrating our 34th anniversary. We try to get to Door County at least once in the summer and we always stay at our favorite bed and breakfast, Double S Lodge.  Check out my blog post 4 years ago and you'll see why we don't ever stay anywhere else!

The Highlight of the weekend was that we went to a table to farm dinner in Sister Bay at Hidden Acres Farm.  Yep, I said that right, table to farm not farm to table because rather than just getting the ingredients from the farm they bring their restaurant to the farm.  Outstanding In The Field is different, their culinary caravan and restaurant without walls are rebuilt every morning and disappears every night. They set up tables (usually one very long one) and supply a mishmash of vintage plates and utensils then serve the most amazing meal. The Chefs and cook staff come from the local restaurants the Wickman House and Trixie's.  Wickman House just happens to be our favorite restaurant in Door County.

The night of our dinner a storm was coming through so when bad weather strikes they have a backup plan for shelter.  In our case, we were in their vintage barn which made for a magical setting.  Besides the food being farm fresh and amazing, the conversation around the table and meeting fellow foodies was so much fun!

Over the last twenty years, Outstanding In The Field has reached all fifty states and fifteen countries! We're going to keep our eye out for another one of these dinners in our future.  Who knows where it will be!

Hidden Acre Farms - Owners Tom and Carolyn Rehberger
Sister Bay, WI

Whitefish Ceviche
Cold Climate Farms Cucumber with beets, garden pesto & preserved lemon vinaigrette
Marinated Cheese Curd with Pickled & Foraged Mushrooms & soppressata (not shown)
Each course was paired with wine!
chicken liver pate, house-made focaccia, pickled vegetables, mustard & preserves
heirloom tomato & smoked corn panzanella, lemon ricotta, spring mix, smoked reserve aioli
house-ground beef ravioli, pickled currants & cucumber-mint gremolata
jerk marinated Jamaican pork loin, farmer's vegetables, triple berry beef demi-glace, foraged chanterelles & fingerling potatoes

mochi butter cake, farm berries & matcha whipped cream
This was our sweet young server.  She has traveled with Outstanding In The Field for a year.  Come this Fall she will become a Freshman at UW Madison.  How fun for her to travel all over the country before starting school.  I'm sure we'll see her again as she'll be waitressing in Madison.  

          Thanks to Outstanding In The FieldHidden Acres Farm, Wickman House, Trixie's and Double S Lodge
                                          We LOVE Door County!


Thursday, July 18, 2019

Honey Mustard Chicken Salad

Yesterday, my son Michael, who lives in Chicago traveling for work, passed through Madison and stopped for lunch.  Nothing makes me happier than to cook for my family.  I saw this recipe and knew Michael would love it as he likes to eat healthy.  This salad is fresh, sweet, savory and packed full of flavor.  I ended up going to three grocery stores to find ripe strawberries,  fresh corn on the cobb and a ripe avocado.  It was worth it to sit down to lunch with this delicious salad and the company of my son.

  • Dressing/Marinade:
  • 1/3 cup whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar/ cider vinegar or white vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs

  • For Salad:
  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 heads romaine, roughly chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups quartered strawberries
  • 1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels


  • In a medium bowl, whisk together Dijon, green onions, olive oil, honey, and vinegar; season with salt and pepper, to taste; set aside 1/3 of the mixture. With remaining, 2/3 of the mixture add 1-2 Tablespoons of water to thin out dressing and put in the refrigerator until ready to serve.  (whisk again right before serving)
  • In a Ziploc bag or shallow dish, combine chicken thighs and 1/3 of the  Dijon mixture; marinate for at least 2 hours up to 6 hours, turning the bag occasionally. 
  • Preheat grill to medium heat and oil grates. 
  • Add chicken to grill, and cook, turning occasionally, until chicken is completely cooked through about 10-15 minutes.
  • While chicken is on the grill.  Cook bacon until crisp.  Crumble and set aside.
  • Also, place unshucked corn in the microwave for 3 minutes.  After, when cool enough to handle, cut off the end. Starting with that end of the husk pull on husk and it will slide right off the corn, silk and all. Cut corn off the cobb and set aside.     
  • To assemble the salad, place romaine lettuce in a large bowl; top with chicken, bacon, strawberries, avocado, and corn. Pour the Dijon dressing on top of the salad and gently toss to combine.
  • Serve immediately.
Recipe adapted from Damn Delicious


Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Crunchy Granola Clusters

 I've been making the same Granola for years, that is until now.  I have a new favorite.  It has the same ingredients as my other recipe, it's loaded with oats, nuts, and coconut, with a touch of maple flavor but the difference is, it has big crunchy clusters.  It's good sprinkled on yogurt, with milk or even by the handful.  The best part is it's easy to make.  Okay, the best part is eating it by the handful!

  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (large flakes not shredded)
  • 1/2 cup slivered raw almonds *see note
  • 1/2 cup raw pecan halves *see note
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch sea salt (or kosher salt)
  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup real 100% PURE maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line large baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. Add oats, coconut, almonds, and pecans to a large mixing bowl and stir to combine.
  3. To a  small microwave-safe bowl ( I used a glass measuring cup) add brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, coconut oil, maple syrup; stir and heat for 30 seconds.  Stir again.  If not totally combined put in the microwave, 20 seconds more and mix. Add vanilla and mix again.
  4. Immediately pour over the dry ingredients and lightly stir to combine until all oats and nuts are thoroughly coated. Arrange on a large baking sheet (covered with parchment paper) and spread into an even layer.
  5. Bake for 10 minutes, turning the pan around (so it bakes evenly) and bake 10 minutes more.   Watch carefully so it doesn't burn.  Everyone's oven is different so if you may need a few more mins. Do not stir!!  You'll know it's done when the granola is golden brown.
  6. Do not stir!  Let it cool COMPLETELY before breaking into clusters.
  7. Store in a sealed bag or container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.  
    *Add any combination of (unsalted )nuts/seeds that you like, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sliced almonds, etc...


Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Eggplant and Italian Sausage Gratin

I have to start out by saying that I have never cooked with eggplant.  I like it and I've had eggplant dishes, like eggplant parmesan and eggplant Baba Ganoush at restaurants but this recipe is my first. 
When I saw this recipe on a blog I follow, Chris at The CafĂ© Sucre Farine, I went out that day and bought the ingredients to make it for dinner.  What caught my eye about this recipe is that she said her husband said after tasting one bite, “This might just be the most delicious thing you’ve ever made!”  Well, I made it for my husband and this gets a thumbs up from both of us!  So delicious!  It also comes together easily, while the eggplant is roasting, make the sauce, then assemble and cook.
Check out Chris's blog and this recipe here...I followed it exactly, so no need to rewrite it.  Chris also gives great tips on buying eggplants and about the recipe.  One thing I will add is when you roast the eggplant, make sure you generously brush the foiled pans with olive oil.  I didn't and the eggplant slices stuck.  By the time I got it off the pan, it wasn't nice slices anymore but the sauce covered up my mistake and it still tasted wonderful.

***After eating the leftovers, which warmed up great in the microwave, I have to add that I would make one change after all....instead of 8 servings, I would say 6 servings.  Maybe 8 servings if you are serving a side salad.  It probably also depends on the size of your eggplants.