Perfectly Poached Salmon

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Admittedly, I’ve struggled with cooking salmon for years now. Coooking salmon seems like such a basic skill.  A little too much heat and salmon can get very dry, still edible but a far cry from that perfectly moist, tender, and cooked result you expected. Justin Chapple at Food & Wine’s Mad Genius kitchen solves our salmon woes.

The answer to perfectly poached salmon after the jump!

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Bella Bruschetta

Broo-sket-tah, Italian for fabulous appetizer, is my go to dish for dinner parties and potlucks.  It requires minimal effort and you can bring something dazzling, flavorful, and healthy to the table.  A small batch of bruschetta goes a long way.  I made a small dish and it served 5, easily.

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Consuming tomatoes provides an array of benefits to your health, including reducing bad cholesterol, improving skin, making stronger bones, fighting cancer, regulating blood sugar, making hair shinier and stronger, and preventing kidney stones and gallstones.  To avoid using white bread, I served bruschetta with whole grain wheat toast for a healthier take on the traditional recipe.

In terms of taste, they say the uglier the tomato, the tastier it is.  Here, I used 10 ounces of mini heirloom tomatoes from Trader Joe’s.

Recipe after the jump!

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Smoked Salmon Mango Salad with Mustard Dressing

If you’re looking for a new recipe for smoked salmon, this mango salad is a satisfying and fresh plate.  It’s also low carb.  Yay!

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Recipe after the jump!

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Tomato Basil Seared Scallops

I cooked scallops for the first time last night.  I was nervous about cooking to the perfect “done-ness” but the process proved to be pretty fail proof.   This recipe was also improvised and I love how it turned out!  The tomatoes, basil, and rosemary add so much flavor but the dish isn’t drenched or submerged in a stew, allowing  you to appreciate the taste and texture of the scallops on their own.

IMG_1293Recipe after the jump! 🙂

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Vegan Miso Orange Glazed Eggplant

Sometimes I forget that vegan cooking can be quite simple.  This eggplant dish is a great lazy meal since it only takes a few minutes to prep.  The rest of the cooking time is baking in the oven so you can set it and forget it.

Did you know that there are 14 varieties of eggplants?  Here, I used the most common one found in American grocery stores – the American or Globe eggplant with its bulbous, pear shape.  If you’d like to create this dish with better presentation, try substituting with the Japanese eggplant with its long and thin shape, cutting in half lengthwise.  You can also garnish with fresh green onions or chilies.

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Recipe after the jump 🙂

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Oysters Magic Sauce

Oysters don’t have to be reserved for a special occasion or only enjoyed in a fine restaurant.  They’re quite easy to prepare at home whether served raw or cooked.  I’d also like to share with you a delectable, magical, fantastical sauce made from Hog Island’s hogwash recipe and my own little sumthin sumtthin on top.  This preparation is absolutely the best way I’ve had oysters.
IMG_1236Recipe and how to shuck video after the jump.  I hope I’ve demystified making oysters at home for some 🙂

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I Heart Elephant Garlic

While passing through Gilroy on my move to San Francisco, I stopped by a produce stand and bought a bulb of elephant garlic.  My only regret was not buying more.  Elephant garlic is actually a variant of the leek species.  It’s more mild than regular garlic, thus preferred when used raw.  I love the convenience in size.  I usually only need 1 clove when cooking.  I do a rough chop by knife then I finish dicing in a food processor.

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Elephant garlic can be bought online.  The cheapest option is to purchase seeds or bulbs for planting.  Here is one store in Gilroy that ships harvested elephant garlic  –  http://store.garlicdude.com.