Would you believe I’ve been working on this blog update for…um…months?! Well, that’s not exactly the case. As a rule, I tend to avoid the whole “sorry for the delay in posting” bit, but I think my several-month absence deserves some manner of explanation. Here:
1. I am, in my deepest core, a lazy person. Sure, I wake up early, maintain gainful employment, and love to clean my house. But when we really get down to things, I’m a born sloth, meant for napping and pondering more than the doing.
2. Having suffered with back pain for practically as long as I can remember, I’m no stranger to discomfort. But lately, I’ve been suffering so severely that it’s affected my everyday life. I am now bad at SITTING. Yes, sitting. I can’t do it for more than 15 minutes before lightening bolts of pain originating in my lower back start shooting down my leg. And with no health insurance, a strict regimen of Aleve and Heatin’ Pads are all I have to comfort me. Don’t cry for me, dear reader; just understand that plopping down in front of this little blinky box after eight hours of work is usually out of the question.
3. Did you see the part where I talk about how lazy I am? Yeah.
So, here’s the deal, I’m going to wrap up this bloggio update without a traditional recipe recitation – I’ve forgotten the specifics of the recipes, and they’re pretty straight forward as it is. Enjoy the pretty pictures; get inspired. And hopefully, just putting this on the interwebs, will get me back in the spirit of posting. Because I do love this little blog, and I mean to keep it.
When jonny d asked me to help him prepare an anniversary dinner for his parents, I was postively thrilled. Not only was I going to get to prepare dinner for my dearest non-family-member’s family, but I was also going to get to enjoy the comfort of Jon’s mom’s delux kitchen. She is outfitted for any culinary need that may arise (and several that seem downright unlikely,) and her pantry is stocked until approximately 2020 with all sorts of little gourmet treats that jr. gourmands like Jon and I relish in exploring.
Surveying the offerings at Fresh Market before heading to Camp Davidow, Jon and I noticed a beautiful side of salmon that we promptly purchased and began planning around. We were thinking exactly the same thing (as is often the case) – Asian. How would we impart some sort of pan-Asian yumminess to this gorgeous, vibrant (but no dye added) piece of fish?
And then, there, beckoning to us, seeming to wave its flappy tops like gesturing hands, we saw…baby bok choy. The plan came together instantly – braised baby bok choy & seared salmon with bell peppers and plenty of garlic.
I love to braise greens like this – Bok choy and endive are my favorites for this simple preparation. I sear the greens, cut side down, and then once I’ve established some lovely golden brown color, I deglaze the pan with some kind of alcohol, in this case, a little mirin. Throw in some orange zest and ginger, and in 20-30 minutes, the bok choy will have transformed from semi-erect cabbage bundles to absolutely melty, shmelty braised deliciousity with a hint of citrus. It pairs beautifully with fish and a crisp sauvignon blanc, or even a not-too-bitter sake.
I crisped up the skin of the salmon with a nice sear and served it over a bed of basil couscous and the bok choy. We threw in some bell peppers and shiitakes to boost the color and texture of the meal. I think it’s safe to say that this Davidow anniversary was a success.