Thursday, February 20, 2014

Baked Salmon with Goat Cheese Tart and Argula Salad

Prior to starting this blog, I never gave much thought into what it takes to get a really good picture of food. Let me tell you, it can be quite hard. The more I cook, the more I started paying attention to things like plating, but I am still amazed at how something that can look so amazing in person, can look far from it in a picture. 
Of course, I would end up with less than satisfactory pictures for a three part recipe too!!! Don't let the pictures turn you off, this meal was so good, and given how quickly it all came together, I couldn't believe how fancy it seems.

Let's start off with the Salmon.

What you'll need:
2 - 8 oz wild caught salmon fillets
Grey Poupon
Bread Crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash the salmon, take a knife and spread a layer of Grey Poupon evenly across the fillet (be careful, you can put on too much), sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake for 20 minutes.


For the salad, combine 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, Sea salt and ground black pepper with 2 cups packed baby arugula or mixed salad greens. 

For the tart, here's what you'll need:

1/2 cup almonds
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, divided
2  tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces      
3  tablespoons honey     
1/3 cup fig spread
3 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled

In a food processor, chop the almonds with 1/4 a cup of flour until coarsely chopped, add the remaining flour and butter to the mixture and run the processor again. Pour in the honey, and run for a bit more until lumps begin to form. Scrape down as needed.

Spread the mixture into a 9 in tart pan, freeze for 15 minutes, then bake in an oven at 375 for 12 - 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, spread the fig spread evenly, add the crumbled goat cheese and bake for an additional 8 - 10 minutes. Allow to cools slightly, then serve.

The tart comes together so quickly, it is a nice dish to add to any dinner party, celebration, or just a weekday dinner, it's that easy! Enjoy!

**The salad and tart recipe came from Whole Foods

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Weekend Update

I hope all of you were able to stay warm from the snow. We had a surprisingly busy weekend, jam packed with events. Little Girl and I went to a production of Pinkalicious the Musical. We have a number of Pinkalicious books, and Little Girl loves all things pink, so it sounded like a good fit.

After watching the show, I have to say, Pinkalicious is actually my least favorite of the series, she's a lot nicer and considerably less bratty in the other stories, so I was sad to see the musical is primarily about the original book. Little Girl was a little overwhelmed by the experience, there were a ton of people, the actors and actresses didn't look identical to the characters in the book, so that thru her off a bit, and she wasn't used to going that long without being able to ask me a question :) All in all, I think she did enjoy it though, and it was fun to take her out to a show.

As if that theatrical performance wasn't enough, I had tickets that evening to Camelot at the Cincinnati Ballet. It was a brand new production, and they have incorporated some really neat lighting/computer visuals that enhanced the background and scene. I realized on my way to the show that I didn't even know the story of Camelot, I had heard the names of the key players, but I had no idea how tragic of a story it was. The ballet was really good, poor Lancelot actually took a tumble on his way our for the curtain call, after dancing beautifully for 2 hours, my lasting memory of this show will always include him just sitting on the ground taking his bow from there (I don't think he was hurt, he got up later, but he was definitely shocked that he slipped and fell).

This morning then, we went out for a quick bite at Panera before coming back to play in the snow. While we were out though, we stopped in our local bookstore in search of an Indestricables book. We went to our public library the morning before and I stumbled upon a new and approved "board
 book. Instead of the traditional hard book, that was supposed to be sturdy enough for a baby to "read" and not destroy (but in reality, enjoy drool and chewing could still destroy), these books have a more normal weight of paper, but it's washable, chewable. ..  Here's what Amazon has to say about them :

  • Indestructibles are the books built for the way babies read. They are 100 percent baby-proof, chew-proof, rip-proof, and drool-proof. Printed on a unique nontoxic, paperlike material that holds up to anything babies can throw at it—gumming, spilling, dragging across the floor— Indestructibles are the little books that could. They’re indestructible. And if they get dirty, just throw them in the washing machine or dishwasher.

As much as I love the library, there was no way I was going to check out a book that is made for a baby to chew on. So, we set out to find it, and we did! We picked up two today, Baby Faces and Hickory Dickory Dock. There are very few, to no words inside the books, but the pictures are nice. the RLG sat and read the book for quite a while, then he moved on to chewing it for a while longer.
The spine of the book is sewn, so there is no glue. I'm not sure what material they made the pages out of, but the one I saw at the library, while clearly it had been used, the colors were still very bright, and the edges were all still nice and solid.

Books, YUM! RLG approved.