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Something special happened to me yesterday. My local grocery store had sea bass. It doesn’t happen often, I usually have to go to more of a specialty grocer to get this type of thing. But I bought it, I had to. And my absolute favorite way to have sea bass is miso glazed. This glaze give the already rich tasting fish a buttery, creamy and yet crispy glaze that is absolutely to die for. I have used this glaze on just about every type of fish and miso glazed salmon is a regular meal for us, but it is a special treat to have miso glazed sea bass. This recipe will work for just about any type of fish though, I do actually recommend trying it on salmon as well.
One trick I use to make sure I can quickly throw together these types of things is that I always keep grated ginger in a baggy in the freezer. Peeling and grating ginger can be a pain, but I do it in a big batch so I always have it on hand. Just peel, your ginger, pulse it in a food processor a few times until finely minced. Spread it out onto a sheet pan and freeze for 2 hours before transferring to a freezer bag. Freezing first on a sheet pan ensures that you don’t get stuck with one giant ball of ginger that would be difficult to measure out and use.
This time I made it I served it with forbidden rice and sesame and lemon roasted bok choy. The fish is really rich and buttery so I like serving it with citrusy veg to balance it out, and I love the texture of forbidden rice too but wild rice would work just as well.
Mix all ingredients together (except the fish). Pour over fish in a ziplock bag, squeeze out air and make sure fish is completely coated. Refrigerate overnight (or at least 30 minutes)
Heat canola or vegetable oil over high heat in a heavy bottomed skillet. Once oil is shimmering, sear each side of the fish for no more than 1 minute, until a crust begins to form.
Move to a sheet pan lined with foil and bake for 15-20 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
While fish is in the oven, pour the extra marinade into a pot and heat to a boil, reduce to a simmer then reduce until a thick glaze forms. Baste it onto fish halfway through cooking, serve extra sauce on the side.
While living in Spain during my study abroad semester I traveled, became comfortable communicating in Spanish, deepened my independence, made new friends, discovered new joys and interests, and got very homesick. One of the things I had a difficult time with was the food. While the food in Spain is delicious, it lacked the variety that I have become accustomed to living in Southern California, not only was I used to having Mexican, Italian, Chinese, American, and Vietnamese food all within a few days, it’s also hard to beat the variety of fresh and organic produce available here. I cooked occasionally for my host parents, but I discovered that the food I missed most were dishes I did not know how to make. Things that mom and grandma always made for me like grandma’s Pho, and mom’s spagetti. I began searching for a new comfort food, something that would be the chicken soup of my Spain experience.
It is ironic that the food I found to be my new comfort food is a very traditional Spanish dish with nothing American about it- tortilla. I find it funny that while in Spain I was homesick for America, but now that I have been back for 5 years, I find myself sometimes feeling homesick for Spain. Homesick for the food, the culture, the history, the architecture, the excitement of living somewhere foreign and having probably fewer worries than I will ever have again. The same food that comforted me in Spain, continues to comfort me and remind me of that wonderful time in my life.
The ingredients and preparation seem simple enough, but the key to making tortilla as good as my host mom did is in the details. You may be tempted to slightly alter the recipe, or maybe skip or change a step that seems unimportant, but don’t. The results just won’t be the same, trust me on this. I have been trying for 5 years to make this with less olive oil, without letting it rest, slicing in cubes using a sharp knife and a cutting board, and I tried boiling the potatoes first, don’t do it. Just follow the steps my host mom gave me to a “T.”
One of the steps I regularly skipped until I realized it’s importance is the way the potatoes are cut. I used to watch my host mom make tortilla and think “why doesn’t she use a cutting board, and WHY is that knife so dull?” I knew they couldn’t afford nice kitchen ware, but it seemed a little too simplistic and even outdated to me to do it like that. But, as it turns out, there’s a method to the madness. I could go on explaining the chemistry of starches and how this makes sense, but, to make a long story short, creating the roughest edge possible on the potato is key to getting the right texture so that it crisps slightly but doesn’t brown and absorbs some of the egg. Why do you not want the potato to brown? I DON”T know, but my host mom said so, and I have learned through trial and error to just take her word for it when it comes to making tortilla. This seemingly simple dish is nothing but simple. The method has been refined over decades, and some things are just better left as they are. Delicious.
Using a dull knife (if a butter knife works, then great) slice part way into the potato then rotate the knife to break off a chunk of it, about 1/2" cubish. The pieces should all be odd shaped and have rough edges. Salt generously.
Place the potatoes in a non stick skillet and just barely cover with olive oil, bring to a simmer. After a few minutes, add the onion. Cook until the potatoes are soft but NOT brown.
Drain the potatoes and onion, reserving the oil. My host mom strained the oil through a paper towel and saved it in the fridge for use in another dish, just remember that the oil now has salt in it. Let the potato and onion sit in the colander draining and cooling for about 10 minutes. Take a taste and add more salt if needed.
Meanwhile, scramble 3 eggs with the water. Gently mix the potato and onion into the egg and let it sit for another 10 minutes.
Check the mixture, some of the egg will have been absorbed into the potatoes, so add another if needed to get your preferred consistency. I like mine not as eggy.
Pour about 1 TBS of olive oil back into the skillet and set to medium-high heat. Fill the skillet half way up with potato mixture and cook until halfway set and the bottom is just beginning to brown. Place a plate on top of the skillet and very carefully flip the skillet over and the mixture onto the plate. Slide the potatoes back into the skillet with the uncooked side down and continue to cook until the bottom browns and the egg is cooked. The center should still be slightly soft. Slice into wedges and serve warm.
My husband and I moved into our current home in the middle of summer. It was a huge upgrade for us coming from a tiny apartment on the third floor to a house three times the size of the apartment with a backyard, a garage, and a GRILL! I never realized how much I would really miss having one until I got one. We grilled all summer. It was glorious. Some of my favorite things to grill are corn on the cob, fancy burgers, zucchini, and cedar plank salmon. I absolutely love cooking on the cedar plank. All summer I was using the McCormick Grillmates Smokehouse Maple seasoning as my go to grilling seasoning even if I wasn’t using the cedar planks. (Sorry for my inability to focus, but if you sprinkle that stuff on sweet potatoes and roast them then puree them into a soup it is supremely delicious). Then, in fall I made a discovery that would change my life forever. Ok, maybe I’m being dramatic. But maybe I’m not. Maple Bacon Salt is very possibly life changing, at least in my home. Anyways, I decided to make my own smokehouse maple dupe using the Maple Bacon Salt I had made. Eric said it was the best salmon he has ever tasted and there was only a little bit of wine involved. He calls the Maple Bacon Salt “cheater dust” because it makes everything that I put it on so good. (I also catch him sneaking little pinches of Maple Bacon Salt, so maybe that explains a little bit…)
If you chose not to make the Maple Bacon Salt you are truly missing out, but you could use the McCormick Smokehouse Maple instead of my seasoning blend. Just remember, you don’t realize how blind you are until you put on glasses….same goes with Maple Bacon Salt. You just don’t know what you’re missing. (And in case you are wondering- those corn cobs below basted with miso butter just before they were done. Another thing you should try)
Now that I have you hooked on cedar planked salmon and Maple Bacon Salt, let me let you in on another little secret. I pre-soak then freeze cedar planks so that I don’t have to plan in advance to make cedar planked whatever. Eric can tell me at 5pm that he would like cedar plank salmon for dinner and I can stop at the store on my way home and pick up salmon. Then pull the wood from the freezer to thaw while I prep veggies and heat the grill and we are ready to grill. All you do is soak like you usually would, put the plank in a zip lock freezer bag and stick it in the freezer. Life changed. Also, cedar planks can be expensive, so I buy them on Amazon- Cedar Grilling Planks – 12 Pack (affiliate link). .
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp paprika
1 TBS pure maple syrup
1 tsp Maple Bacon Salt
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
fresh cracked pepper to taste
1.5 lb of salmon, skin on
1 12×5 cedar plank
Prep cedar plank (or just whip one out of the freezer) by filling a shallow dish with water, put the plank in and put something heavy on top to keep it submerged. It should soak for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.
Heat the grill to medium heat. While grill is heating, season the salmon by combining first 6 ingredients into a thin paste and rubbing on salmon.
Put the plank on the grill (without salmon) for about 5 minutes with the lid closed.
Then add the salmon skin side down. Close the lid and cook 15-20 minutes until the salmon is light pink and cooked to your taste. Try to open the lid as little as possible to keep the smoke in for best smokey flavor.
I love Thanksgiving. It is my favorite holiday. It’s a time to spend with family and extended family and friends to tell them how much you appreciate them. And in my family the food is also very (!!!) important- so much so that we actually split the day into two parts. The first part is Vietnamese style. My grandma makes Pho and egg rolls and we have that as brunch. Then for dinner we have a more traditional meal with ham and mashed potatoes and green bean casserole. Talk about a food coma. But man is it delicious. And the soup is light and low fat so, it’s not that bad, right? Whatever. I don’t really care. It only happens once a year and it’s just too good to care.
Anyways. With all that food there are always a ton of leftovers. And don’t get me wrong, I love leftovers. But there are only so many times I can eat the exact same meal before I get tired of it. There are so many ways to transform your Thanksgiving leftovers- potato pancakes, turkey sandwiches with cranberry and cream cheese, green bean casserole soup…… But I came up with a new leftover mash up that is probably one of my favorites yet: poblano peppers stuffed with leftover mashed potatoes, turkey and corn and smothered in enchilada sauce and cheese. It’s so good. I’ll probably make it throughout the year with chicken instead of turkey. Yum.
Remove the seeds and stem of the poblano peppers and cut them in half. Place the cut side down in a baking dish, drizzle with oil and bake at 400 for about 10 minutes until the skin starts to bubble. Then stuff them with leftover mashed potatoes, diced turkey, and frozen corn. Drizzle with enchilada sauce and cover with a handful of shredded pepper jack cheese and bake till bubbly and golden.
What is your favorite way to eat Thanksgiving leftovers?
Ingredients (serves 4)
4 poblano peppers
1.5 c of leftover mashed potatoes
1/2 c frozen sweet corn
1.5 c diced turkey (or chicken)
1 10 oz can of green enchilada sauce
1 c shredded pepper jack cheese
Pre-heat oven to 400f
Remove the seeds and stem of the poblano peppers and cut them in half
Place the cut side down in a baking dish, drizzle with oil and bake for about 10 minutes until the skin starts to bubble. Remove from oven and let cool for a minute. Reduce temperature to 350
While poblanos cool mix the turkey, mashed potatoes and corn together in a bowl.
Spoon the potato mixture evenly into the pepper halves. Drizzle enchilada sauce over the peppers, pour any extra into the bottom of the baking dish.
Top with shredded pepper jack cheese and bake for 25-30 minutes until the cheese starts to bubble and brown.