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Smoked Salmon Dip

Thanksgiving officially kicked off the holiday entertaining season. It seems from now until Christmas, every weekend is busy, there are work parties, family get-togethers, and last-minute guests stopping by for cocktails. Our Thanksgiving dinner went very well; in addition to a sage and cider brined turkey, we had buttered carrots, Brussels sprouts with honey and rashers (Irish bacon), brown bread apple stuffing, homemade apple sauce, and a potato and turnip gratin. The only thing that didn’t turn out great was the gratin; since I was cooking away from home I used a much deeper bacon dish and different oven so the cheese cooked too quickly while the potatoes and turnips did not. Luckily there was plenty of other food, including starters like pears with blue and Comte cheeses and brown bread and a super easy salmon dip that literally disappeared in minutes.

smoked salmon

You can’t beat a three ingredient recipe, especially when you are cooking an entire meal and need something to keep guests full and happy while they wait for the main event.

red onion

I made this dip to taste, so feel free to experiment with amounts of ingredients and to add things like chopped capers and lemon zest.

Creme Fraiche

I simply mixed about 1/2 cup of chopped smoked salmon, 1/4 cup of finely chopped red onion, and a cup of Crème Fraiche and chilled it until we were ready to serve. When everyone had gathered, we poured glasses of bubbly, plated up some fresh brown bread, and set out all of the little bites on a table by the fire.

smoked salmon dip

Simple, quality ingredients always make the best recipes, as I am reminded when we travel in Europe most of all.

We’re in Rome right now for the next couple of days, then on to Dublin to spend a night with family and then home to Boston again. I have taken hundreds of photos of our travels, food, and wine adventures, and while I would love to stay here, look forward to catching up with life at home.

Are you hosting any holiday events this year?

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Tags: appetizer, dips, entertaining ideas, Food, holiday side dish, party, recipe, salmon

Happy Memorial Day! I hope you are all having a wonderful long weekend. Mine’s been pretty amazing so far.

The tough thing about summer weekends is, the more fun they are, the less we tend to get done. Suddenly grocery shopping and other chores just seem like a waste of precious time, and the rest of the week ends up a bit more stressful.

That’s why I am doing my best to create really easy meals with healthy ingredients that we can put together in just a few minutes. Welcome, salmon burger tacos.

These salmon burgers from Trader Joe’s are great on a bun with some tartar sauce or dill yogurt, but last week I discovered they make a great, if not traditional taco.

Salmon Burgers

I pan-cooked them in a non-stick skillet until done. These burgers are pretty substantial and all salmon, making them a perfect healthy protein choice.

Once the burgers were done, the sky was the limit. I wrapped ours in Archer Farms whole wheat tortillas. I love the Archer Farms brand, these tortillas are some of the softest and best-tasting I have ever purchased. I layered in guacamole, pre-made by Wholly Guacamole, and topped with shredded romaine lettuce and Archer Farms salsa. Not bad for a meal consisting of pre-made ingredients.

Archer Farms Salsa

I’m trying to avoid grocery shopping today by going through our cabinets to see what I can make, at least until tomorrow, with what we already have. I’d like to start making at least one farmers market part of my weekly rotation and mixing in some of the grains and whole wheat pasta we already have.

What’s your favorite quick and easy summer recipe or meal?

 

If you live in Boston, you may not know that The Shops at Prudential Center has a farmers market – it’s actually year-round and just moved outside.

Vendors include:
Butter Cafe – baked goods
John Crow Farm – grass fed meat
Swiss Bakers – sandwiches, Swiss pastries
When Pigs Fly – artisan and gourmet breads
Cook’s Farm – pies, maple products
Fastachi – gourmet nuts
The Herb Lyceum – herb plants, herbal products, vegetables
Sal’s Gourmet Chips – flavored potato chips
Saluna Garden Farm – flowers and herbs
Still River Winery – iced apple wine
MacArthur Farm – vegetables and fruit

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Tags: easy meals, fish, Food, healthy, salmon, tacos

Quick and easy is the name of the eating game in our house these days. Early in the week, I try to squeeze in my long runs, and for the day of the run and the day after, I am ravenous. Unfortunately in these moments, the last thing I want is to eat vegetables. It’s all about cheese, carbs, and trying to fit in some sort of protein. I think I make up for the veggies the rest of the week; it’s all about balance, right?

This past Monday was a slow work day, and with the lingering daylight, I was able to fit a 17 mile training run in late in the day, followed by a 90 minute yoga class at a shop near my class.  I didn’t realize the yoga class was 90 minutes; I thought it was 60! But it felt so luxurious to be able to stretch for so long in a warm room, and stretching so much meant I wasn’t the slightest bit sore the next day which NEVER happens. I even got a little massage and extra stretch throughout the class with the help of the instructor. She is actually donating a 90 minute private yoga class for the raffle for my Boston Marathon fundraising event. If you are interested in delicious yoga that will make you feel amazing after, check out her teaching schedule:

http://www.karmadawnyoga.com/

Anyway, running and yoga meant that I exercised for 4.5 hours on Monday, and my appetite was feeling it on Tuesday. I wanted an easy dinner with stuff we had in the house, and these salmon burgers, accompanied by oven fries, were made.

Ingredients:

1 cup faro, soaked all day

1 16 ounce can of salmon (Canned salmon is one of my best-kept healthy-eating secrets!)

1 large egg

1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

2 teaspoons habanero maple mustard, picked up at the Cabot store in Vermont

faro

habanero mustard

I used a potato masher to mash all of the ingredients and then used a spoon to make sure they were combined evenly before putting the salmon mix into a lightly oiled muffin tin.

I had my oven fries roasting at 420, so I just popped the salmon burgers in for about 10 minutes until they were browned on top and my fries were ready.

salmon burgers

Since I am all about the sauces, I used the cooking time to whip up three sauces to dip my salmon burgers and fries in. I made a simple tartar sauce (mayo and relish), a horseradish and Fage yogurt sauce (more protein!), and a honey mustard using the habanero mustard and some honey. And I added a giant pool of ketchup to my plate as well. There can never be too many sauces!

sauces

The salmon burgers came out just the way I had hoped. The faro added a nice chewy texture, and the mustard and bread crumbs some nice flavor. I forgot an after photo, but they did get browned on the top while staying soft in the center which made them fall apart. They were still delicious!

I was kind of dragging during the day, but a couple of these burgers and some roasted fries really made me feel energetic again. I need to remember to keep the protein levels up so that my stomach is not growling at bed time!

The sauces added a fun, fast food kind of feel to the meal, and I enjoyed having all of them. I am seriously a condiment fiend. I think my most favorite recent condiment is truffle ketchup from Saus.

What’s your favorite condiment/sauce?

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Tags: dinner, Food, healthy, recipe, salmon

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