Monday, July 20, 2009

Weekend cooking

I managed to take several photos between Fri, Sat and Sun, but they were all of food that I cooked, nothing that I did. I did so many fun things this weekend (running with a friend, a great date night with my hubby, volleyball with friends, sewing etc.), but was horrible at capturing those moments, I guess I was too busy enjoying myself. Here's the recipes (and photos) from my weekend.

Lentil Salad

I had previously posted this recipe here, but thought it worth mentioning again seeing as how much Jeremy and I both LOVE this recipe.

Baked Tilapia

This is my favorite method of baking any type of white fish.

-1/4 cup olive oil
-6 cloves fresh garlic
-2 Tablespoons cajun seafood seasoning
-1/3 cup fresh cilantro or flat leaf parsley, chopped (I tried both on different occasions, and each were excellent)
-juice of 1 lemon
-6 tilapia fillets, or other white fish

Combine all ingredients except fish in a bowl. Placed the fish in a greased baking dish. Spread the sauce on the fish and then placed in a preheated 400 degree oven. If your fish pieces are small 10-20 minutes would do. You’ll know it’s done when it flakes easily and is no longer shiny and translucent at the center of the fish.

Grandma Lou's (Jeremy's grandma) Butter Beans and Corn

This is the first time that I made this dish without ham, and I think it turned out just as delicious as normal. If you have a ham bone or ham scraps in the freezer this is a great way to use them up though.

-One bag frozen butter beans
-One bag frozen corn kernels
-One table sized package Sweet N Low (that’s how she makes it cause her husband has diabetes, but a tablespoon of sugar works great also)
-Grandma’s canned tomatoes (I don’t know about you, but I don’t have any on hand so I use one 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes)
-Cut up ham

Cook the butter beans and ham on the stove in water according to package directions. Add tomatoes, corn, sweetener, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for at least 5 minutes or until serving.

Potato Salad

You know how pretty much everything tastes better when someone else makes it then when you do? Potato salad is one of the few things that I always tend to like better when I make it... probably because I like the combination of ingredients and proportions that I use the best.

-3-5 lbs. red potatoes, scrubbed, but not peeled, cut in halves or quarters depending on size of potatoes into large bite size pieces
-9-12 hardboiled eggs, diced
-1-2 stalks celery, chopped
-about 1/2 cup sweet gherkin pickles, diced
-plenty of reduced fat mayo (about 1 cup)
-a small squirt of yellow mustard (1-2 Tbsp)
-red onion, diced (about 1/2 onion)
-scallions, sliced (about 6)
-salt and pepper
-1 teaspoon of sugar
-1 tsp celery seed

Boil potatoes in lightly salted water until done. Drain and cool. Combine mayo, mustard, salt, pepper, celery seed, and sugar in a bowl, whisk until thoroughly mixed. Combine potatoes, mayo mixture and remaining ingredients. Refrigerate at least an hour before serving.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

You don't really need a recipe for this, I just tossed together some spinach, chopped strawberries, sliced red onion, and toasted walnuts for a light lunch salad on Saturday. The dressing followed the same basic principles of all of my dressings... I always start with 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 cup of some type of vinegar (I like this ratio, because it's less fat than most dressings). Then add fresh ground black pepper, and 1 Tablespoon of some type of sweetener (sugar, honey, maple syrup). In some cases I'll also add extra flavors like soy, garlic, ginger, herbs, red pepper flakes, dijon mustard etc. depending on what type of salad that I'm making. For this particular dressing I used basil olive oil (which was quite delicious!) because I had it in the pantry and it needs to be used up before it expires soon, I also used balsamic vinegar (regular or white balsamic would be great here), 1 Tablespoon of honey (but sugar would be fine also), and fresh ground pepper. It would also be good with some raspberry or strawberry preserves mixed into the dressing, or adding some mashed pulp from some berries. Cheese could be added, but Jeremy and I usually forego it. Any fruit (like kiwis, apples, berries, pears) would be great here, and so would any type of nut.

Followed Kate's recipe for Purple Potatoes, or essentially potatoes and red cabbage. This was super yummy, even better the next day, and a nice change from our standard side dishes.



Penny Franklin said...

Wow! I'm gonna try some of these great dishes! Thanks for sharing them!!!

Lynn said...

Your strawberry spinach salad sounds yummy! :)