Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Arctic Char with a Soy Glaze

Soy Glazed Arctic Char


2 tablespoons Rice Wine Vinegar
2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
2 teaspoons Honey
2 teaspoons Fresh Grated Ginger
1/2 teaspoon Sesame Oil
A Sprinkle of Sesame Seeds (optional)

Serve over Basmati Rice

Preheat oven, 425 degrees.  Place Arctic Char fillets on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, skin side down.  Brush sauce over fillets.  Bake for 8-10 minutes.  If you like to gauge doneness by temperature, check for a temp of 110-115.  Fillets will easily slide off the skin when using a spatula to remove the fish from the pan.  It's a simple, quick and super flavorful sauce to add a vibrancy to your fish dinner.

I brushed the sauce on a few times so I would get a deep rich color on my fish and a heavier glaze.   The fillets will be much lighter in color and flavor the less you brush on, it's really personal preference.

This sauce will work for most fish types, salmon would be great too, a close relative to Arctic Char.   Arctic Char is a beautiful cold water, sustainable fish which makes a healthy, environmentally friendly choice for your families dinner table.

Enjoy : )

Ciao for now & until next time, Happy Cookin'

Monday, 15 October 2012

Food, Love & Sex

Go ahead...admit it, you have at some point in your life connected food with love & sex, haven't we all?  Whether it was chocolate covered strawberries and champagne for your lady to celebrate a special occasion or raw oysters and other libido exciting foods to enhance your lovers mood; food, love and sex go together like bread, peanut butter and jelly.
A simple way to let someone know you love them is to cook some of their favorite dishes.  Maybe it was a dish his mother used to make or a treat she adores but doesn't care to make for a favorite dish for the one you love is a win-win.  It makes a statement that never fails to pull the heart strings of the one you love.  A well cooked dish is also always a winner when it comes to attempting to impress a date, I know because my sweetheart won me over with a beautiful salmon dinner on our first date.  The saying "The way to a man's heart, is through his stomach" didn't come about for no reason, and what woman can resist a man who knows their way around a kitchen?
Food and sex have been two peas in a pod since the earliest of times, whether it was grapes being fed to each other between lovers or the creation of dishes that were considered aphrodisiacs.  As early as the 1500's, it was thought that certain foods that produced flatulence would produce male erections and certain roots consumed by women were thought to increase their fertility.  
Countless studies have been done by scientists to confirm or disprove the actual effects of these types of foods and their effect on sexual desire.  Many have been found to enhance, excite or irritate different areas of our bodies and our central nervous systems.  Is there a direct physical connection on sexual desire when these foods are consumed is an answer they are still searching for today.
I believe it is in the simple act of sharing a loving gesture with our loved one that acts as the best aphrodisiac.  It is certainly sexy and loving when someone goes the extra mile and creates a dish for us.  It is definitely sexy and loving when someone has set before us foods believed to create a change in our physiology in hopes of increasing intimacy.  It is in the creation of setting a certain type of atmosphere that can easily raise our libido isn't it?  A nice glass of wine, lit candles, a sumptuous dinner or gourmet dessert and the effort that person put forth to make us feel special, to feel loved and to be made to feel desired.

So whether it is to show someone you love them, to remind them you care, or to try too "get lucky"...always remember that something as special as a home cooked meal or a special treat can be the best investment of them all when it comes to matters of the heart.

Ciao for now, & until next time Happy Cookin'



Monday, 1 October 2012

Veal Chops with a Creamy Mushroom Wine Sauce

Veal chops...Where have you been my whole life???

Rinse and pat dry
Season with salt & pepper

Sear in a hot pan with melted butter till golden brown on each side and finish in a preheated oven

Some recipes will say 3 minutes per side, and some will say more.  I believe the ideal is...when one side is a nice golden brown...flip it over and do the same to the other side : )  If you think, okay, I'll sear for 6 minutes each side and the chops are golden brown before that time is up and you continue searing risk over cooking them, making them dry and tough to chew (and tasteless).  Same goes for a lesser amount of time, if they are not golden brown in 3 minutes...the time is too short!  So...use your judgement and keep a close eye on them and sear until they are a nice golden caramelized brown on each side.  Remove from pan and place in your oven to finish the cooking process.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Add sliced mushrooms and chopped onion or shallot to the pan you seared your chops in...  The mushrooms and onions will soak up the lovely flavor left in the pan.  Add a sprig of rosemary, season with salt and pepper and cook until the mushrooms have released their juices and the moisture begins to evaporate in the pan.
Add approx. 1/2 cup of white wine to pan and let simmer for 2 minutes.  Add home-made chicken stock and allow to simmer until the mixture begins to reduce.  When the sauce reduces, approx. by half, stir in a bit of heavy cream if desired.  I was wanting a creamy mushroom wine reduction if it's not your thing, just skip that step.  Be careful not to over reduce your sauce though, it's better to take it off the heat until you're ready to serve than to let it go too far, you want a nice flavourful sauce, not a syrup : )

I left my chops in the oven for approx 10 minutes while I finished my sauce and they came out  between med and med rare.  Medium rare is perfect I think...I am soooooo glad I didn't leave them in any longer or I would have ruined them by over cooking them.  When you pull them from the oven, set them aside and tent them with foil to let them rest.  Remember that meat continues to cook while it rests so don't be shy about pulling them out after 7-8 minutes.

They smelled so delicious!  This was my first time ever making veal chops and I was super nervous.  Not only are they not a cheap cut but if you do it right, they are spectacular tasting : ) Worth every penny.
Yummy sauce (remove the rosemary sprig before serving)
Plate and serve....I served it over a mushroom risotto (sadly over done, but the first time I did that, so I cut myself some not perfect : ) yet ; )
Drizzle some of the sauce over the chop and enjoy.
Just like the first time I ever had a lamb chop....when I tasted the veal, I couldn't help but wonder...why the heck it had taken me so long to try is sooooooooooooo gooooooooood!

Whether it is chili or spaghetti sauce, sometimes it is about personal preference/taste.  We also don't always make things the same way twice do we?  I think when it comes to a dinner like veal chops, it's not always about a specific recipe as much as it is a method of cooking.  A sauce is a combination of flavors you love and the chops are a method of cooking (sear and finish in the oven).  The advice I would offer when making a sauce, is to choose spices and herbs you enjoy, and when cooking with wine...just be sure to cook it for a couple of minutes to cook out the alcohol only leaving the flavor of the wine to enhance the flavor of your sauce...oh...and as I said before, be careful not to cook too want a full flavor in your sauce but not a syrup which will happen if you let it go to long.

Ciao for now, and until next time Happy Cookin'

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...