Saturday, January 25, 2014

Sole and Bay Scallops Italiano

I've been trying to eat healthy after all the holiday's indulgence. The simple dinner I came up with tonight is only 314 calories a serving. With a side of couscous makes a total calorie dinner at 604, not too shabby!!! Here is what I did. It only took 20 minutes or so to put this meal together. 
for the baked fish:
1lb of flounder or sole
1/4 lb of bay scallops
20-30 grape tomatoes sliced
3/4 cup of sliced black olives sliced
2 tablespoons of capers in vinegar
2 tablespoons of chopped shallots
3 tablespoons of olive oil
a splash of white wine 
a squeeze of fresh lemon juice
a sprinkle of fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste
Just layer all the ingredients, first fish, season with salt and pepper, next the tomatoes, olives, capers, shallots  and parsley. Drizzle with oil and re season. Set aside if needed, just before you put it in the oven add wine and lemon. Bake at 375 for 30-40 minutes.
for the couscous:
1 cup of tri color Israeli couscous
1 1/4 cups of water
1 tablespoon of butter
1 tablespoon of grated parmesane 
salt and pepper to taste
bring the water, butter, salt and pepper to a boil add the couscous and simmer until all the liquid is evaporated. Toss with parsley and cheese.
*you can use any fish of your choice it will all work perfectly!!
** any starch will work good too!!
***a nice salad and a good white wine makes a perfect Saturday night dinner!!!!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Pasta Aglio Olio and Alici with Bay Scallops and Spinach

     My favorite times in the kitchen are when I go in and just start grabbing ingredients, mixing and tasting and creating something original, this is what I came up with tonight. I took my go to pasta with anchovies, garlic and oil and added some things that I had to use up from my weeks groceries and it turned out delicious!!
For the sauce I used:
6 cloves of garlic peeled and smashed
1 can of black olives sliced
1 can of anchovies
1 lb of bay scallops
1 bag of baby spinach
1/4 cup of olive oil
2 big pinches of crushed hot red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons of butter
salt and pepper to taste
1lb linguine 
First I added the garlic, olives, anchovies, olive oil and red pepper flakes to a skillet, heated on medium heat for about 3-5 minutes. Next I added the scallops and butter and turned off the heat. I put a pot of salted water on to boil and cooked the pasta. When the pasta was almost cooked I turned the flame back on the sauce, added the spinach and some starchy pasta water until just heated, then I added the pasta to the skillet and just heat through for a few minutes.

Next I made a topping that I am sure I showed you before, it's just some panko bread crumbs mixed with seasonings. Tonight I seasoned them with parsley, lemon zest, red hot pepper flakes, salt and pepper tossed with enough olive oil to moisten but they stay crunchy.
*Start with a basic oil and garlic sauce in a skillet and the possibilities are endless, use left overs...
**A nice crunchy loaf of Italian bread, a tossed salad, and a nice bottle of wine and dinner is complete for a casual get together!!
***This dinner only took 15 minutes if that to put together!!! Quick, easy and yummy!!!!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Mozzarella en Carozza and Potato Croquettes

   Two of my childhood favorites, actually its Italian peasant food, hearty and filling for very little money. Two very easy dishes that go great with a nice homemade soup. The potato croquettes are always made with left over mashed potatoes that are doctored up with seasoning and a little surprise in the middle. The mozzarella en carozza is a cross between grilled cheese and savory french toast. No precise recipes here just methods. For the mozzarella en carozza, translated means mozzarella in a carriage, simply put sliced mozzarella between two slices of preferably italian bread, dredge in flour seasoned with salt and pepper, the coat with beaten eggs also seasoned and shallow fry in equal amounts of olive oil and butter until golden brown and the cheese is all melted and oozing. For the potato croquettes, mix the left over mashed potatoes with anything that is not too moist, left over veggies of any kind, fresh herbs ect., add a beaten egg and enough bread crumbs so they hold together nicely and you can form a patty. Now the fun part, tuck a nice surprise in the center of the patty, my favorite is ham and cheese. At this point I crust the patties in panko bread crumbs and shallow fry once again in oil only until golden and yummy. Well there you have it I hope you try one or the other next time you put a pot of soup on the stove, add a nice salad and your good to go.