Seafood

Honey and Soy Glazed Turbot with Garlic Greens

Soy and Honey Glazed Turbot with Garlic Greens Soy and Honey Glazed Turbot with Garlic Greens

Life moves pretty fast with three kids, and it’s been a while since my last post.  Since I’ve taken on full-time stay-at-home parenting, I’ve been busy to say the least: diapering, rocking, potty-training, potty-training cleaning, pre-school transporting, and yes, cooking.  I’m always cooking.  I’ve come to really, really appreciate easy recipes like this Soy and Honey Glazed Turbot.

Now that I’m not spending so much time writing and developing meal plans, I’m free to actually use my old ones.  People would frequently ask me if I followed my meal plan and my answer was always, unfortunately not.  The reality was that I was always testing new recipes and figuring out what would be on the next week’s menu.

But now I am liberated!  (Sad as it is to not be writing new plans!)  Now I pick a meal plan, give the shopping list to my husband on the weekend, when he takes our 4 year old out on errands, and follow the plans that I took so much time to produce for others in the past.  I am happy to report that they’re pretty darn nice to have around.  Fantastic, actually, not to pat my own back or anything.

Over the past few years I’ve written literally hundreds of recipes.  Some were really great, but I only made once or twice (others were not so good, but I didn’t use those in my plans!).  So in using my old meal plans I’m rediscovering some of those recipes.  This Soy and Honey Glazed Turbot is [...]

Sauteed Sea Scallops with Strawberry and Celery Salsa

Sauteed Sea Scallops with Strawberry Salsa Sauteed Sea Scallops with Strawberry Salsa

Sea scallops are a wonderfully decadent treat, especially when crisped up in some butter and olive oil.  I love ordering scallops at restaurants on a special occasion, but there’s really no reason to limit them to a restaurant experience; you can make them at home just as well and they’ll be more affordable.

The key to making delicious seafood at home is to start with good seafood, then to not overcook it.  With good-quality seafood I find that it’s actually much easier than other proteins like chicken or steak to prepare.  They have so much flavor on their own that a simple salsa on top is enough to make a restaurant-quality dish.  If you can, buy fresh (not frozen) scallops, which will sear well.  Frozen scallops will still be very tasty, but because they hold on to some water, won’t form that golden crust.

This recipe is from Eat Happy Meal Plan.  Check out the whole week’s menu here.  Sign up and get the other recipes along with the shopping list and weekly planner that will save you time and energy here.

Scallops with Strawberry Celery Salsa
From Eat Happy Meal Plan
Total Prep Time: 30 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients
1 lb domestic wild sea scallops, preferably fresh (fresh will sear better than frozen, but frozen will still taste great)
3 cups fresh strawberries, stems removed and cut into ½ inch dice*
2 stalks celery cut into 1/3 inch dice
2 limes, juice and 1 tsp zest reserved
1 tsp honey, raw and local [...]

Scallops and Strawberries: Meal Plan Menu for July 20

Meal Plan Menu July 20 2014 Meal Plan Menu July 20 2014

Are you ready for Eat Happy Meal Plan to transform your relationship with dinner?

Here’s sneak peak of next week’s Eat Happy Meal Plan Menu!  This is the menu for the week of July 20-July 26th, and it will arrive in inboxes this Thursday at 6am!

Next week you could be enjoying these delicious scallops with an easy Strawberry and Celery Salsa, an amazing Summer Vegetable Tart with an even more amazing homemade 5-minute tart crust, sweet and savory Hawaiian Tuna Stackers with Pineapple and Canadian Bacon, and a simple Quinoa Pilaf made with vegetables you’ve roasted earlier in the week.

Enjoy meals that are homemade, fast, nutrient-dense, and full of fresh flavor with this meal plan.

Sign up today to get your this Eat Happy Meal Plan in your inbox on Thursday.  You’ll be loving dinner next week!

  • Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole
    Permalink Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole with lots of good stuffGallery

    Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole with Kalamata Olives, Roasted Red Peppers and Cannellini Beans

Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole with Kalamata Olives, Roasted Red Peppers and Cannellini Beans

Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole with lots of good stuff

While putting together the Eat Happy Meal Plan for next week I inadvertently ended up with a bit of a Mediterranean theme – including this Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole.

Mediterranean food is renowned for its health benefits as well as its tastiness and, for lack of a better term, the level of satisfaction this way of eating provides.  Because it’s not deficient in any major food group (lookin at you fats) and includes a lot of variety in foods and flavor, it’s a very satisfying way to eat, which also happens to make it very sustainable.

This casserole is a bit of a smorgasbord of Mediterranean ingredients – kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, tomatoes, cannellini beans, feta cheese (look for authentic goat or sheep milk varieties), fish, and fresh herbs.

You do have to cook the quinoa, but other than that the preparation is as simple as tossing chopped ingredients in a bowl (many of which conveniently coming from the pantry), mixing, then transferring to a casserole dish to bake.  Twenty-five minutes, easy peasy.

Serving of Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole Serving of Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole

Mediterranean Quinoa Casserole with Kalamata Olives, Roasted Red Peppers and Cannellini Beans
From: Eat Happy Meal Plan
Total Prep Time: 55 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Serves:  4 with leftovers

Ingredients
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed well in a fine-mesh sieve
2 cups chopped tomatoes with liquid from about 1 can
3 roasted red peppers, about 1 jar, cut [...]

  • Buckwheat Blinis with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and Sauerkraut
    Permalink Buckwheat Blinis with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and SauerkrautGallery

    Buckwheat Pancakes with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and Sauerkraut

Buckwheat Pancakes with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and Sauerkraut

Buckwheat Blinis with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and Sauerkraut Buckwheat Blinis with Smoked Salmon, Lemon Sour Cream and Sauerkraut

A special sneak-peak from next week’s meal plan menu!

I loved smoked salmon well before I knew much about the nutritional benefits of this awesome fish.  It’s smoky, salty, buttery, and wonderfully satisfying.  And, it doesn’t require any preparation on my part!  I just buy the good wild stuff from the grocery store (which, btw, is so much better than farm-raised, I can’t even emphasize it enough).

For a lightning-fast meal you can put smoked salmon on whole grain tortillas or pita pockets, but if you have just a few minutes to whip up a homemade batter, it’s especially delicious on these warm buckwheat pancakes.  The nuttiness of the buckwheat pairs beautifully with the smoky salmon and sweet, refreshing lemon sour cream.  I also love the addition of tangy sauerkraut, which boosts the nutritional value of the meal, but if you’re not a fan you can always leaves this out, or eat it on the side.

As with most pancakes, the real time investment is in the actual cooking – pouring, flipping, repeat, etc.  But here it all works out, because while you’re flipping your pancakes you can mix up the quick lemon sauce, throw together a salad, pour yourself some white wine, or do whatever else you need to do.

If you think smoked salmon on pancakes will make your kids (or husband, or roommate?) look at you like you have lobsters coming out of your ears, never fear: these pancakes are perfect with any number of alternative toppings.  Peanut/almond/sunflower [...]

Salmon and Black Bean Burgers with Cumin and Lime Dressing

Salmon and Black Bean Burgers with Cumin and Lime Dressing Salmon and Black Bean Burgers with Cumin and Lime Dressing

Getting a last-minute, super-nourishing and complete dinner out of pantry staples isn’t necessarily easy.

In my house the need for this kind of meal typically arises at the end of the week.  In a way it’s a good problem to have, because it means that my left-overs from earlier in the week have been eaten.  That always makes me happy.

On the other hand, by the end of the week I’m pretty sick of cooking.  I just want something easy, low effort, low mess.  But still substantial and nourishing.  After all, I’m trying to grow a couple of healthy kids here.  They need high-quality protein, omega-3 fats like DHA and EPA, and an array of vitamins, minerals, and micro-nutrients.  So I’ll suck it up and cook, but I want it to be under a 30 min effort.

Enter the canned goods: black beans and salmon – both excellent pantry staples.  While I usually make my beans from dried, I keep a few containers of canned or tetra-packed beans for last-minute recipes like this.

For the salmon, I like Alaskan sockeye salmon, which is wild and contains the highest levels of those beneficial omega-3 fats.  If you can handle it with the bones, it’s actually better for you – the bones add great calcium and they’re soft enough to easily mash up.

Now I’ve made black beans burgers, and I’ve made salmon burgers.  This time I thought, why not mix it up a little and make them together, along with some mutually beneficial seasonings like cumin, [...]

Wild Coho Salmon with Mushrooms and Shallots

CohoMushrooms

Wild Coho Salmon with Sauteed Mushrooms and Shallots

It’s the tail end of salmon season.

 On the other end is the vibrant, deep orange-red, velvety, wild Coho salmon.  Coho salmon is only one of the multiple varieties that lives wild in the pacific northwest, but it is one of my favorites.  Here he is in all his glory:

All you need to accomplish fancy-restaurant-quality salmon is a good-quality fish and to not overcook the bejeesus out of it.  The good-quality fish is really key.  And getting fresh fish that hasn’t been frozen is really a nice treat – the texture is buttery and smooth.  At my grocery store some beautiful Coho salmon is available through the first week of October.

I decided to pair my lovely salmon filet with some oyster mushrooms from the farmer’s market, a little dried thyme, and some minced shallot.  Easy peasy.  I sauteed the mushrooms and shallot while the fish was roasting in the oven.

My rather large, 1 1/3 lb salmon filet was too big to fit into a 13×9 inch baking dish, so I cut that bad boy in half and he was snug as a bug.  He was done roasting in 15 minutes.  Just enough time to saute my fungi.

I served this with some roasted red new potatoes and some collard greens sauteed with a little tomato.  Get this recipe in the context of its complete meal-plan by signing up here.

Coho Salmon with Sautéed Mushrooms and Shallots
From Eat Happy Meal Plan
Total Prep Time: 25 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Serves:  4

Ingredients
1 [...]

Whole Roasted Yellowtail Snapper with Tomatoes and Olives

roasted yellowfin with tomatoes and olives_wholeWhy roast a whole fish?

Roasting a whole fish is easy, practical and delicious.  The first time I ate a roasted whole fish was in a fancy restaurant.  It was the moistest fish I had ever eaten, and I soon discovered that it was incredibly easy to do at home.

Find a fresh, whole fish at a trusted market and ask for the fish gutted and any sharp fins removed.  Then it’s basically a matter of throwing a few ingredients in a roasting pan that will create a tasty sauce while the fish roasts.  So easy, and you’ll get more for your money, as much of the fish is lost if it’s cut into filets.

roasted yellowfin with tomatoes and olives_filet

Roasted Yellowtail Snapper with Tomatoes and Olives
Total Prep Time: 25 minutes
Active Time: 20 minutes
Serves:  4-6

Ingredients
2 lbs whole yellow fin snapper, fins removed and gutted (if you prefer, have the fish fileted, which will be a little over 1 lb of filets)
1 large tomato, diced
½ cup green olives, chopped
¼ cup minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons minced garlic
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), sea salt and fresh black pepper

Directions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees
  2. Drizzle a little EVOO in the bottom of a glass 13 x 9 inch pan or roasting pan.  Place the whole fish or fish filets in the dish.
  3. Sprinkle the fish with some salt and pepper.  If using whole fish, be liberal with the salt – [...]

Sesame Ginger Shrimp and Soba Noodles Stir Fry

Shrimp and Soba Noodle Stir Fry

There are a few meals that I could be happy eating nearly every day.  This stir-fry is one of them.  Light, slightly salty and slightly sweet, and full of whatever vegetables you have on hand, it’s balanced in every sense.  By all means adapt it to the veggies or proteins in your fridge or freezer.

Cooking in a traditional wok actually makes life easier because the wok’s larger surface area can accommodate all of the ingredients at once, and therefore results in faster cooking.  Added bonus: cast-iron woks infuse a little health-beneficial iron into your food.  And they’re very affordable relative to pricey stainless steal or ceramic cookware.  Get a good wok here.

Sesame Ginger Shrimp and Soba Noodle Stir-Fry
From Eat Happy Meal Plan
Total Prep Time: 35 minutes
Active Time: 30 minutes
Serves:  4

Ingredients
1 lb shrimp, raw and deveined (sub any protein – tofu, chicken, etc)
½ head savoy or napa cabbage
1 cup frozen corn
1 cup frozen peas
3 scallions, thinly sliced
8-10 ounce package soba noodles (I like 100% buckwheat noodles that are gluten free)

Sauce:
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/4 cup soy sauce or sub coconut aminos
2 tablespoons honey, raw and local are best
3 tsp minced garlic, from about 3 cloves
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, grated, can substitute 1 tsp dried ginger
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp hot sauce or sri racha, optional
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), sea salt, black pepper, crushed red pepper

Instructions

  1. Mix all of the sauce ingredients [...]