Last year, I finally came around to liking salmon, and now I can’t get enough of it. One afternoon, Wade made this delicious salad and now it’s one my favorite meals! It is a little time consuming to make, but all the ingredients can be made ahead of time, and they store really well. Here is Wade’s awesome recipe!
Poached Salmon Nicoise Salad with Citrus Tarragon Vinaigrette
hard boiled egg
In a large pot of salty water boil asparagus, green beans and potatoes until tender. Cool in an ice bath then drain on a paper towel.
1 lemon grass stalk roughly chopped
1 lemon sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
3 cloves garlic smashed
1/2 onion roughly chopped
1 tablespoon pepper corns
1 tablespoon dill
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup seasoned rice vinegar
1 cup rose wine
2 cups water
1 carrot roughly chopped
Place all ingredients into a pot large enough for all of the salmon to fit on one level. Bring poaching liquid to a boil for a couple of minutes, submerge salmon in liquid and simmer covered for 5 minutes. Remove and chill in refrigerator or place in and ice bath. The trick here is to not over poach the salmon because it can get real dry real fast.
If storing, place cooled salmon in plastic bag with a little of the braising liquid. The salmon can be made a day ahead! Joel Brown thought this would make a great picnic salad!
Citrus Tarragon Vinaigrette
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
pinch of salt and pepper
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed oj or other citrus
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons finely chopped tarragon (and more to garnish)
Top the salmon with more fresh chopped tarragon and lemon zest and enjoy!
My favorite holiday, Valentine’s Day, is just a week away and I couldn’t be more excited! I love all of the pink and red heart stuff out in all of the stores, like these fun glasses. They totally remind me of Alison of The Alison Show! When I was a little girl, my mom and I made a big, gingerbread style “Valentine house” that I took to pre-school and all the kids deposited their Valentine’s into it. Then, at the end of the day, I got to play “mailman” and deliver all the Valentine’s to my classmates. It was a super fun and special tradition that my mom created with me. My husband and I have our own special Valentine’s Day tradition of making homemade pasta together and sharing a bottle of champagne. Do you remember last years VDay “booty” post? I got comments on that all year!
This year we decided to change things up and make heart shaped pizzas. We kept it simple with ready made pizza dough, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil and one special ingredient. For the sauce, we used a jar of tomatoes that my friend Amy canned with her bare hands! It doesn’t get better then that!
To turn Amy’s tomatoes into a thick and robust pizza sauce we turned to the master of pizza in LA, Nancy Silverton!
Heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat until the oil is almost smoking and slides easily in the pan, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the tomato purée slowly as it will splatter when it hits the oil. Stir in 1 tablespoon of sugar, 1 scant tablespoon of kosher salt, 1 heaping teaspoon of ground , black pepper, reduce to a simmer and cook until the sauce thickens, about 30 minutes. Not putting herbs in the sauce allows you to really taste the flavors of the herbs you top the pizza with!
Making the pizzas together was quick, fun, and delicious! What are some of your Valentine’s Day memories and traditions?
We named this drink The Gin Ferguson after our friend and cocktail guru, Matt Ferguson. It may look fresh and spring like but the ginger and pecan bitters makes it perfect for those cold, winter nights. It would be a fabulous beverage to have at a Golden Globes Party this weekend! Cheers!
2 oz. gin
1/2 oz. ginger syrup (see recipe)
1/2 lemon juiced
3 dashes of toasted pecan bitters
Pour gin, ginger syrup and lemon juice into a collins glass or tall glass filled with ice. Top with soda water and bitters. Stir and garnish with lemon twist and mint sprig. Enjoy!
Ginger Simple Syrup
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
2 pieces (about 10 inches long and 4 ounces; or use several small pieces) fresh ginger, cut into very thin rounds
1 teaspoon black pepper corns
Bring the sugar and water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add ginger and peppercorns and simmer 1 to 2 hours adding more ginger if necessary to make it very spicy. Pour syrup through a fine sieve into an airtight container; discard ginger and peppercorns. Refrigerate up to 1 month.
Bitters have become super popular again thanks to the craft cocktail movement and there are many artisanal producers popping up all the time. Miracle Mile is an awesome example and the one we used in the making of this cocktail! Check out the wide variety of bitters and take your cocktails to the next level. You won’t be disoppointed!
One of my favorite things to eat when it’s cold outside is homemade chicken soup! It’s definitely more labor intensive to make from scratch but it’s well worth it for the robust flavor and the fact that you can eat it all week. I enjoy eating it with a fresh, buttered baguette…heaven! I’m especially fond of this recipe because of the addition of the pearled barley. I love the texture with the tenderness of the chicken. Enjoy!
- 1 (4- to 5-pound) whole chicken (extra fat trimmed)
- 2 tablespoons butter (can use olive oil)
- 5 cloves of garlic smashed
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 medium lemon or orange quartered
- Fresh rosemary or thyme
- Heat the oven to 425°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
- Rinse chicken and pat it dry with paper towels. Cut off and discard any extra fat hanging around the body cavity.
- Brush chicken with melted butter coating all of the skin. Season generously inside and out with salt and pepper. Place the citrus, garlic and whole herbs inside the cavity. Also rub a tablespoon of chopped herbs onto outside of the bird. Place the chicken breast-side up on a baking pan or cast iron skillet.
- Roast the chicken in the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 375°F and continue roasting until the juices run clear and a thermometer inserted into the inner thigh (but not touching the bone) registers 165°F, about 50 minutes to 1 hour more. Remove the chicken from the oven and put on a cutting board. Let it rest about 15 to 20 minutes before carving.
- *Note: If you are planning to make a stock out of the chicken carcass, you can add whole garlic with chopped carrot, onion and celery placed directly on the sheet pan directly beneath the bird. Just add the roasted mirepoix to my stock recipe for extra richness!
- Chicken Carcass
- 3 large carrots cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 large celery stalks cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 large onion cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 cloves of garlic smashed
- 5 sprigs of thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 whole all spice
- tablespoon of pepper corns
- tablespoon of salt
- tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup un-oaked white wine
In an extra large stockpot, sauté garlic, onion, carrot, thyme and celery for 6-8 minutes. Deglaze pan with white wine and add the rest of the ingredients ending with the chicken carcass. Cover chicken carcass with 4 inches of water. Bring to a boil and simmer lightly for 3-4 hours or until stock has reduced enough to produce a rich concentrated flavor. Pour broth through a fine mesh strainer to remove all large particles. Cool in fridge and skim fat.
Chicken Soup With Pearled Barley
- Chicken meat chopped into bite sized pieces from whole roasted chicken.(skin removed)
- 3 carrots sliced into 1/8 inch discs
- 3 celery stalks cut into 1/8 inch slices
- 1 large spanish onion cut into 1/2 inch dice
- 2 cups of grape or other small tomatoes halved
- 3/4 cup of pearled barley
In a large stock pot bring homemade stock to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
Simmer pearled barley, tomato and onion for 25 minutes with stock in large stock pot. Add carrots and celery and continue simmering for 20 minutes. Add chicken and simmer for 5 minutes. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Remove from heat, serve, and enjoy all week long!
One thing that I look forward to every Christmas is my moms raspberry bars. I can usually use pretty good restraint when it comes to sweets but I always allow myself a bar or two during the holidays. My mom has made them for as long as I can remember. When I moved to California she would ship them to me. I have tried to make them myself but she has the magic touch. Hers are always better. I am thrilled to be home for the holidays this year in Florida with my family and all the raspberry bars my heart could desire! Thanks Mom! Happiest of holidays to everyone! XO
1 package of yellow cake mix
2 1/2 cups of quick cooking oats
1 1/2 sticks of butter melted
1 cup raspberry preserves
1 tablespoon of water
Powdered sugar for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Grease a 13X9X2 inch pan
Combine dry cake mix and oats in a large bowl
Stir in melted butter until mixture is crumbly
Measure half of mixture into your greased pan
Press firmly to cover the bottom of the pan
Combine the preserves and water
Spoon over the mixture in pan and spread evenly
Cover with remaining mixture
Pat firmly to make the top even
Bake for 18 to 23 minutes; top should be very light brown
Cut into bars, sprinkle tops with powdered sugar and put them into cupcake papers
Store in an airtight container