Archive | April, 2011

Easy Weeknight Date Night Meal

28 Apr

Just because it’s a weeknight doesn’t mean that you and your special someone can’t have a nice date-night worthy meal. It ended up being pretty warm today in Boston, so instead of cooking the salmon in the oven the full time and heating the oven to 375 – 400 degrees, I decided to pan-sear it and then finish it gently in the oven.

I paired the salmon with basmati rice with cherry tomatoes and spinach.

Here’s what you need:

2 salmon filets, I took the skin off (I should really get a better knife for that)

2 TBS of basil butter, see previous post for recipe

1 garlic clove, chopped

extra virgin olive oil

2 scallions, white and green, chopped

2 cups of uncooked baby spinach

1/2 a pint of cherry tomatoes, halved

salt and pepper

1 tsp herbs de provence

Splash of Orange Juice

5 pineapple cubes, I used frozen pineapple

Parmesan cheese

1 Bag of oyster crackers, the kind you get when you get soup at the grocery, 5 saltines would do ok too if you don’t have oyster crackers

I’d add a splash of white wine too but alas I was out.

Preheat your oven to 350. In an oven-safe dish, melt the basil butter into some extra virgin olive oil. Season salmon filets with salt and pepper. Place in dish. Do not turn over. Once you see the bottom starting to cook, top with the crushed crackers. Add the splash of orange juice/wine. Add pineapple chunks. Cover top with foil and bake until salmon is flaky.

I used the fabulous Uncle Ben’s rice in the bag that you microwave for 90 seconds and it’s done! While the two bags of rice are in the microwave, heat some extra virgin olive oil with the cherry tomatoes and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and the herbs de Provence. Add one bag of the rice and the spinach. Do not mix yet. Once the heat of the rice starts to wilt the spinach add the other bag of rice and stir.

By the time the rice is done, the salmon is done. I serve the rice with a sprinkle of freshly crumbled Parmesan cheese. I actually found a black peppercorn Parm from Trader Joe’s, delicious. I also put some of the pineapple into the rice for an added level of flavor/texture. You can also put the pineapple on top of the salmon.

This is a bright, super easy dish to make for a week night and elegant enough to be a date night. My someone special said this was “awesome.” C’est si Yum!


Champagne Thursday Part 2

22 Apr

I tried to prep as much as I could last night. I made swordfish filets. You can of course use whatever fish you want.

For the marinade:

Champagne Vinegar

Salt and Pepper

1 Garlic Clove, minced

1 Shallot, minced

2 tsp Herbs de Provence

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tsp, honey

Splash of white wine (I used riesling)

Juice from half a lemon

Drizzle your container you’re storing the fish in overnight with extra virgin olive oil. Place fish pieces in container and pour marinade over the top. I kept it there overnight. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Put the fish in a greased baking dish. I put the fish side that was up in the marinade, facing down and then poured the marinade over the other side. I checked the fish after 10 minutes and spooned some of the marinade mixture over the top. Total cook time was about 14 minutes or until the fish is flaky. Swordfish is so buttery tasting it was a nice compliment to the acidity from the lemon and Champagne vinegar.

Serve hot!

C’est si Yum!!

Champagne Thursday Part 1

22 Apr

Champagne Thursday! I’m made:

Bruschetta with basil butter

For the basil butter –

1/2 a bunch of fresh basil

Extra virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove

2 TBS Parmesan cheese

Salt and Pepper

4 TBS of butter (unsalted)

Eight pieces of sliced bread of your choice

Put all the ingredients in the food processor and pulse until combined! You’ll have to scrape the sides down. Feel free to add red pepper flakes or some additional dried herbs if you want. I kept it simple for the bruschetta.

I marinated quartered cherry tomatoes and marinated them overnight with a minced clove of garlic, a splash of balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and a few pinches of herbs de provence.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. You can use lots of types of bread (I used a Tuscan Pane). Put the bread in the oven for about 10 minutes. Put the tomato mixture on the bread after 10 minutes and sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake until toasted. Sprinkle with more extra virgin olive oil and salt/pepper if you want. Serve hot!

A Different Type of Shrimp Scampi

21 Apr

What’s the best part of ordering mussels or shrimp that is cooked in white wine and butter? THE SAUCE!

I made a simple and quick shrimp dish last night. If you chill the shrimp after they’d be great for Shrimp Cocktail!

What you need:

1/2 Pound of Shrimp
2 TBS of Butter cubed
2 Garlic Cloves
1/2 Cup of Sweet White Wine (I used riesling)
Salt and Pepper
1 tsp of Herbs de Provence
1 Shallot, Minced
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk ingredients together except the butter and pour over shrimp, I took the tails off.
Toss shrimp in mixture and pour into a bake-safe dish with extra virgin olive oil or non-stick spray in the bottom. Spread the butter cubes around the shrimp.

Bake for 8 minutes or until pink and flip them. Return to the oven for about 3 minutes. Don’t let them over cook or they will be rubbery.

Serve with crusty bread pieces or crostini.

C’est si Yum!

Restaurant Review – Banshee Pub Boston

18 Apr

In not so nice Dorchester, there is a pub called the Banshee. They are a soccer pub. Last night, they had the perfect set up for a Celtics-Revolution fan. Have you noticed a theme with some of these posts? Yes, my guy is a big Boston sports fan, especially the Celtics and Revolution.

We ordered the potato skins and chicken tenders. The chicken tenders were your regular chicken tenders, you only get three but they were still good to share. The potato skins are possibly the BEST I’ve ever had. They are not those potato cups with cheese and bacon in the middle. They are more of if potato skins and cheese fries had a baby, this is it and it is awesome. Covered in melted cheese and bacon and served with a side of sour cream, the Banshee potato skins are a must. The potato skins alone would get a 10 but the Banshee would be an overall 8.

Go check it out 934 Dorchester Ave.

C’est si Yum!

Restaurant Review – CBS Scene

7 Apr

I went to my first professional soccer game a couple of weeks ago at Gillette Stadium. The New England Revolution played against the D.C. United and won 2-1 in the FREEZING cold. I do not think I’ve ever been so uncomfortable in my life. After the game, my guy and I went to CBS scene where the USA team was playing Argentina. I felt like a child trying to relearn to use my hands as they defrosted. I got an email and tried to reply and one sentence took almost five minutes.

We hung out behind a table that was marked “Reserved” for the players. When they players didn’t show, we grabbed the lovely round table and sat family style with fellow Revolution Fans.

We ordered the Kobe Beef Sliders, which were small even for sliders, but good! and the Buffalo Chicken Nachos. See below:

We watched four orders walk across the room and were sold on looks alone! They were crunchy to the last layer and smothered in cheese. The actual buffalo chicken was alright but the overall dish was great!

Good service considering the crazy bunch and we’ll likely go again for the atmosphere and TVs. If I had to put it on a scale of 1 – 10 it’d be an 8!

Check out the CBS Scene next time you’re at Patriot Place! C’est si Yum!