Friday, May 24, 2013

Simple Tomato Poached Fish

Luke and I are still in recovery mode from our whirlwind trip to NYC (both work and play). When we got back in town Sunday afternoon, the last thing I wanted to do was turn around and go to the store. Luckily, my pantry, freezer and garden were my friends, and I threw together this super flavorful dinner! And, I got to include one of my favorite finds on a food tour of Chelsea Market, Taste #5 Umami paste. It really did add a savory zing to the dish.

Simple Tomato Sauce Poached Fish

1 cup dry quinoa
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 ounce pancetta or prosciutto (bacon works too!)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 28-oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tablespoon Umami paste (or tomato paste, then add a splash of balsamic vinegar too)
Salt and pepper to taste
6-8 ounces tilapia (or other white fish)
6-8 leaves fresh basil

Prepare quinoa according to your favorite method (I put mine in the rice cooker with 2:1 water to quinoa ratio and set it to whole grains). Season lightly with salt and set aside.

Heat a small dutch oven or a deep skillet with 1 tablespoon oil. Add prosciutto and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. 

Add remaining oil to pan, then add garlic. Stir to prevent burning. After one minute, add tomatoes and paste and stir to combine. Bring to a boil then let simmer 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Season tilapia with salt and pepper to taste. Place tilapia in simmering liquid, reduce heat to medium low, and cover. Cook 8-9 minutes, turning the fish once. It should be flaky once cooked.

Serve over quinoa, topped with freshly chopped basil. Enjoy!

What's your favorite "glad to be home" meal?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Apron Adventures in New York City

Luke and I just got back from a tasty trip to NYC, where we enjoyed several days of sightseeing, relaxing, and of course, eating with his parents and brother. Wanted to share a few of my favorite food memories, in photo form :)

Food Tour of Chelsea Market
Highly recommend this company - Foods of New York. Love getting a great mix of food/walking/cultural information - a great way to try a lot of food over 3 hours, and have fun while doing it!

Our tour guide showing the view from Highline Park - so cool!

They carried some of my favorite cheeses! Loved enjoying the Cabot Clothbound Cheddar on its own and then in a grilled cheese

The tea selection was amazing - I got a few to bring home :)

Smorgasburg in Brooklyn
I'd heard from several foodie friends that this is THE thing to do on the weekend. So true! It seems like there were around 100 vendors, all of them awesome local restaurants and artisans. We probably tasted 10 different places, so clearly I need to go back :)

We got the banh mi hot dog!

It might have been $7 for a small bar, but we bought some because it was THAT good

These came with a scallion cream cheese that was TO.DIE.FOR.

The Vermont Maple Lemonade was so refreshing!

Cauliflower and eggplant wontons with a curry aioli

Dan Dan noodles

I've been wanting to go here for ages! Unfortunately, we picked a CROWDED time to go (a Saturday at 5) so it was a bit of a madhouse. But, we had fun exploring, I cam home with lots of Italian goodies, and we had an AMAZING dinner at one of the spots inside, Manzo.

These beets came with a truffled goat cheese - yum!

I was determined to have an authentic NYC bagel, and my colleague recommended this place. SO GOOD! Unfortunately, this was a portion of the trip where I was sick, so I couldn't fully enjoy it :( Luke did, though!

Have you been to NYC? Where's your favorite place to eat?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Menu May 5, 2013

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Luke's knee-deep with grad school, so we're not doing anything crazy. But I will be making fish tacos and enjoying some guac while planning our NYC trip (coming soon!!), which is a perfect Sunday for me. Hope yours is gentle. Here's what's on the menu this week:

Menu plan, week of 5/5
  • Sunday: Shrimp and cod tacos - riffing off of recipes past and inspired by this month's Cooking Light's Blackened Shrimp Tacos.
  • Monday: Spring/Summer Veggie pasta with Parmigiano Reggiano - starring asparagus and corn - my favorite spring and summer veggies! Not to mention plenty of fresh basil and mint from the garden!
  • Tuesday: Tofu Tacos, also from Cooking Light. Pretty excited about these :) Will peel some long zucchini strips and marinate for a little side salad - like this.
  • Wednesday: Apricot Pistachio Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts - from Aida Mollenkamp's Keys to the Kitchen - I have all the ingredients on hand and this sounds delicious - 'nuff said, right? Pairing with a sauteed mushroom rice and some asparagus if I have any leftovers from Monday :)
  •  Thursday: Another recipe from Aida, starring Cod, since I've got a boatload after a recent sale! This one is marinated in Harissa and paired with braised chickpeas. Also throwing in some Moroccan spiced sweet potatoes, riffing off a recipe for carrots from Cooking Light.
What's on your menu? Cheers!