Sunday, January 31, 2010
Saturday, January 30, 2010
Ina Garten is quite a talented home chef and entertainer, and while I'm not a disciple, she does live by the 'great ingredients, simple preparation' mantra.
Fresh ahi tuna is certainly a treat, but this salad couldn't be easier to throw together. When you see the price of ahi tuna at Whole Foods ($15-$20ish a pound), don't be immediately turned off. I'd like to point out that this is a special occasion, and when you compare it to a meal out, (certainly what this dish would cost for two in a restaurant!), it's actually quite reasonable.
If you're game, you'll be rewarded with an unctuous, expensive-restaurant worthy dish.
Your seared tuna should look like this on the outside (above), and this on the inside (below).
We ate the salad with some steamed rice and roasted green beans (tossed with evoo, salt, and 1 tsp soy sauce, roasted for 20 minutes at 400), and it was heavenly.
There's a good serving of grilled ahi salad left and though I love my husband dearly, we might come to blows over who gets it for lunch.
Grilled Ahi Salad
adapted from Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa at Home, serves 3
extra virgin olive oil, for brushing the tuna
salt and pepper
grated zest from 1 lime
squeezed juice from 2 limes
1 tsp wasabi powder
2 tsp low sodium soy sauce
1 ripe avocado, diced
1/4 red onion, sliced
2 scallions, white and green parts, minced
Tabasco or hot sauce to taste (I used about 1 1/2 tsp)
1 Tbs toasted sesame seeds
The dressing on the right is the original from Ina's recipe. The dressing on the left is rich with tahini, additional wasabi powder, mustard and a bit of sugar.
It was good, but much too rich for the light salad I was striving for. In the end I stirred a few teaspoons of the second dressing into the first, et voila! [Comparing the two was interesting, but I will skip that step next time and use the original dressing solo.]
Friday, January 29, 2010
Today's plans: some house-cleaning, homemade lunch with Mom, a simple dinner with Ray at night, and an episode of our current Netflix obsession, Friday Night Lights. Low key, that's my style. Dinner and birthday cake with friends will be tomorrow night, and hopefully I'll have a new recipe to share with you.
But I think I had some of the second~
How cute and girly is this cake? Fairly decent Minnie Mouse impersonation.
Getting a little help from my bros here. We lit the candles repeatedly for every birthday so each sibling could have a chance to blow them out. You'll be happy to hear we don't fight over that anymore.
Sucking in for the big huff and puff. . .
Ah the awkward teen years. . . get a load of that do!
Have mercy on me, North Carolina's weather never agreed with my hair.
Looks like a chocolate log for a cake in high school- and a questionable shirt. Yick.
This one's from last year. Mom is always on cake duty in these pictures!
I don't think I'll ever grow out of the birthday cake. I had the family one last weekend, she made the Russian Grandmother's Apple Pie Cake which is my current favorite and I'm so sorry I don't have pictures to show you because I completely forgot to take any. It's beautiful though, I'll show it to you sometime. If you've had this cake you know what I'm talking about. For a girl who's obsessed with apple pie and cake, it's an absolute dream.
How do you like to spend your birthday as an adult?
Have a great January 29th- with a piece of cake for me!
Thursday, January 28, 2010
~That is one gorgeous shade of blue~
Back tomorrow with a foodie post!
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
This is my fourth cookie- I've started calling it the Microwave Breakfast Cookie, since the original title doesn't illustrate the concept as well. The words 'cookie' and 'microwave' communicate ease and deliciousness. :-) Still Tina's recipe tho! I leave out the raisins (don't like them) and it's a great breakfast with a scoop of Cinnamon Raisin Swirl peanut butter and some Suite Apple granola.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
One thing we have in common is birthdays within ten days of each other. Anna's is January 19th, mine is the 29th. When we visit my in-laws this January, Anna and John will be there for a double birthday dinner.
The couple follows a near-completely vegan diet, so for a healthy baked birthday treat, I reached for these granola bars.
. . . and the first natural sunlight to photograph by in more than a week!
These treats are naturally vegan- *almost (honey).* They are crunchy, and sweet but not too sweet. I like crunchy almond butter, but swap any nut butter for an endless combo of flavor possibilities. If I ever get my hands on some hazelnut butter (got my eye out), I'll be giving that a try immediately. Add some chopped nuts for a little texture if your nut butter is smooth.
makes 15 squares
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix the oats and coconut together on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes until golden. While the mixture is in the oven, measure out the almond butter and honey into a small bowl, and nuke it for 30 seconds or so to loosen them up. Add the wheat germ, vanilla, and salt and mix well until smooth and combined.
When the oat mixture is done, remove from the oven and pour into a large mixing bowl. Add the wet ingredients and start mixing away. Add the dried cranberries and continue mixing until everything is incorporated.
Pour into a 9x13 baking dish. Wet your hands a bit and press the mixture into the dish until it's well squished- press down as much as you can!