Cumin-Spiced Fish Tacos with Avocado-Mango Salsa

One thing I love about cooking is that you can use whatever you have on hand and the food still turns out great! This recipe is a perfect example of that; as long as you have the main components, it will all end perfectly in your belly.  Continue reading

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White Bean, Sage, and Sausage Soup

It has been awhile since I have tried a new recipe (4 months and 8 days, to be exact) and I was very excited to get back into exploring the culinary world. I offered to make lunch for my grandma, and after some shuffling through the thousands – literally thousands – of collected recipes, I decided on White Bean, Sage, and Sausage soup and was so glad I did.

To be honest, I was a bit nervous about this. Leeks smell like black licorice, which is not a food I particularly enjoy. I pleasantly found out that the leek bulb does not make the dish taste like licorice, but gives a gentle flavor that complements everything else in the soup. This is a one-pot wonder that was super easy to make once you prepare all your ingredients. Make sure to have a few slices of crusty bread on hand to dip into the broth.

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Garlic Lemon Chicken Kabobs

I have to add this recipe before I lose it again. This is one of the easiest and best marinades you will ever find and ever make. Although the recipe asks you to let the chicken marinade for at least 2 hours, I have done it for 20 minutes and they still taste great. Your chicken may not be as tender as if you let it soak for 2 hours, but the flavor is all there.

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Roasted Salmon with Soy-Marmalade Glaze

I’m really becoming a fan of good salmon, and this recipe has had a lot to do with it. The beautiful combination of soy, garlic, and citrus come together to complement the taste of salmon- it covers it up just enough for you to forget that you’re eating a fishy fish, but you still get a good flavor of the protein. As a bonus, it takes less than half an hour from start to your mouth. I chose to serve it with a heap of green beans and a rosemary roll, but this recipe can be paired with many more options.

As a side note, when choosing fish fillets from the store, be very involved in your selection. The flesh should look firm and shouldn’t have an indent if a finger was pressed into it (this actually goes for all meats). It shouldn’t be dry, slimy, or off-color. If you can, ask to smell the fish. I know it sounds weird, but fresh fish should have a sea smell. If you smell fish, say thank you to the fish person and walk away. One time, I failed to ask to smell the fish, and I took home some mahi mahi that smelled like the fish you give to dolphins at SeaWorld. Clearly it had gone bad and I was unable to eat it. In the best scenario, you find a reputable fish monger and become best friends with them and trust that they won’t sell you bad fish. That’s just bad business. Now onto the recipe.

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Eggplant Romesco Rigatoni

I am a huge fan of freezing things- especially soups and sauces. Because of their high moisture content, they reheat really well without drying out or changing texture.

While this recipe takes a relatively long time to make (for a sauce) you do end up with a lot of sauce, so if you are only cooking for one or two people, you’ll have enough sauce to freeze and use at a later time with a new batch of pasta. It’s a nice, meaty sauce (minus the meat!) and can easily fool picky eaters into eating more vegetables. After combining the sauce and the pasta, I like to add some mozzarella cheese and mix it in for a baked-ziti kind of dish.

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Spanish Potato and Spinach Tortilla with Red Pepper Sauce

Sometimes for breakfast, you need something more than just yogurt and granola. Because it has been getting colder, I’ve really enjoyed getting up a bit early and preparing a batch of nice, warm eggs. Really, eggs are the perfect protein and the yolks are a great source of vitamins.

This recipe offers the entire package: protein, carbohydrate, and vegetables! It was extremely easy and makes a nice presentation if you happen to have guests over. The red pepper sauce can be made the night before; just remember to serve it the next day!

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Pan-Fried Trout with Tomato Basil Saute

Fish is a healthy protein we (U.S. Americans) do not consume enough of. Not only does it have protein levels comparable to chicken, pork, or beef, but it can also contain those precious omega-3 fatty acids that we also do not consume enough of. Some people choose to take fish-oil capsules, I prefer to just eat fish. There is such a variety out there, I’m sure there is a kind of fish for everyone.

I have made this recipe twice so far, and both times I have been very pleased with it. Trout has a very mild taste and is perfect for people who are trying to consume more fish but are weary of that fishy taste. Northwest Seafood sells fillets with the skin on, so when I do this recipe, I sauté the flesh-side first and then flip it over to the skin side.

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Chickpea Soup with Greens, Onions, and Pasta

We made this soup in my Food Systems lab class, and even though I was eating it at 10 in the morning, it was still really good! I enjoyed having the solid chickpeas and noodles contrast with the soft Swiss chard. Definitely add the cheese on top at the end; even if it isn’t a lot of cheese, it does provide extra flavor.

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