Trout with Caper and Butter Sauce and Roasted Balsamic Asparagus

Did you hear about the big storm that hit KW last Friday? I’ve never seen anything like it. The wind and rain was intense. The thunder and lightning actually worried me less than the former. It seems almost everyone in the city has their own story to share… and we’ve been sharing stories all week!

I was at Vincenzo’s, a local grocery store, when the storm hit. The winds were so strong that we could see and hear them shaking. My little brother was on a bus at the time. The bus had to pull over due to poor driving conditions. A tree was struck by lightning nearby and fell onto a hydro pole, which then fell on the bus! I’m happy to say that my brother and everyone else on the bus is ok. We exchanged text messages and a few photos — he was bored being stuck on the bust for almost an hour afterwards!

Trees and branches are still being cleared even today! Check out some images of the damage the storm caused:

I’m also happy to tell you that my garden made it through the storm! No planters were knocked over or damaged. My neighbourhood seems to have missed the worst of the storm.

I started my garden quite late this year. I didn’t plant anything until mid-June. I have two lovely tomato plants, a basil plant, chives, and mint. The tomatoes are from my aunt at Sun Root Organics (if you’re in Ontario, check out her blog and Facebook page). Despite planting the tomatoes later than I’d have liked, they’ve really taken off and are growing like crazy! I took the photos a few days ago, and the tomatoes are more plentiful already! The basil is from a vendor at the St. Jacob’s Market, and the chives and mint came back from last year. I have been using the chives in my cooking recently and can’t wait for some fresh basil and tomatoes!

Since the storm, it has cooled down enough to cook again! Hooray! I’m quite enjoying being back in the kitchen. 🙂

Trout with Caper and Butter Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 pound steelhead trout fillet – approximate cost $8.50
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt – approximate cost $0.05
  • 1/4 cup butter – approximate cost $0.50
  • 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil – approximate cost $0.05
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced – approximate cost $0.20
  • 1 100 mL jar capers – approximate cost $2.00

Method

  1. Preheat a frying pan over medium-low heat.
  2. Add butter and grapeseed oil.
  3. Heat until butter is melted.
  4. Add garlic.
  5. Cook until garlic is fragrant.
  6. Sprinkle salt over fish.
  7. Add fish (skin-side down if there is skin on the fillet).
  8. Cook until about 3/4 cooked.
  9. Turn the fish.
  10. Add capers.
  11. Cook until done.
  12. Remove from frying pan.
  13. Serve and enjoy!

Roasted Balsamic Asparagus

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds asparagus – approximate cost $4.50
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt – approximate cost $0.10
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil – approximate cost $0.10
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar – approximate cost $0.50

Method

  1. Turn the oven to broil.
  2. Place the asparagus in a large roasting pan.
  3. Sprinkle with salt.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
  5. Broil until the asparagus turns bright green.
  6. Flip the asparagus.
  7. Broil until the other side is bright green and the tips begin to brown.
  8. Remove from oven.
  9. Serve with trout and enjoy!

Note: These dishes take about the same amount of time to cook. I started the asparagus first then cooked the fish.

Makes 2 servings (approximate cost: $8.25 per serving).

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Guest Post: Mediterranean Summer Salad With Extra Virgin Olive Oil

I love purchasing fresh local produce this time of year. Sometimes, the produce doesn’t even make it to the dinner table because I’ve eaten all of it as a snack! This happens every time I buy peas in the pod. I eat them all. Usually by myself. The cat will beg for them — my cat is strange, she loves to eat fresh green vegetables — and I’ll do my best to ignore her. Bryan usually comes home only to find a pile of empty shells… I tend to forget to save some for him as well.

I was quite excited, then, when Randi proposed the guest post I’m sharing with you today. Why? Because I love a delicious fresh salad and this one looks hearty enough to be a meal itself! And because tomorrow is Farmer’s Market day and I’m going to pick up some fresh produce to make this salad for lunch. Take it away Randi!


Author Bio: This is a guest post by Randi Leeds on behalf of Flavor Your Life. To get ideas on how to use olive oil please visit www.flavor-your-life.com.

A vibrant new campaign in support of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, “Flavor Your Life,” has launched in North America. It is jointly funded by the European Union, the Italian Department of Agriculture and Unaprol; the largest consortium of Olive growers in Italy. The goal of the campaign is to educate North American consumers and retailers on the importance of product origin and the quality level of the oil they use daily.

With all the recent controversy over the question “What IS EVOO,” this campaign aims to educate the North American consumer on the proper way to choose an extraordinary and tasty EVOO – from traceability to the origin of the product your purchasing.

There’s no better way to start summer off than with this tasty Mediterranean Salad, brought to you by the dynamic new campaign for Extra Virgin Olive Oil, “Flavor Your Life”.

Mediterranean Summer Salad With Extra Virgin Olive Oil

EVOO Mediterranean Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 pieces of Buffalo Mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 4 large tomatoes sliced
  • 3 English cucumbers sliced
  • 1 tsp. capers
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • Dash of salt & pepper
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish
  • 4 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preparation

  1. Wash and cut all the vegetables.
  2. Place the green vegetables on a chilled plate.
  3. Add the mozzarella and cover with the sliced tomatoes.
  4. Sprinkle with capers and basil.
  5. Season with lemon juice, salt, and a pinch of pepper.
  6. Spoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil over dish.

To get ideas on how to use olive oil please visit www.flavor-your-life.com and follow us on Twitter and Facebook too.

Steak Tartare

Last week was Bryan’s birthday! On his birthday, I shared with you a list of some of his favourite items that I have shared on this blog. Because we’ve both been incredibly busy, our first opportunity to celebrate his birthday was Saturday evening.

To save on money (and a secondary motive of getting some interesting blog content), we decided to stay in to celebrate Bryan’s birthday. Don’t get me wrong, I spent more than usual on this dinner. It’s not every day you celebrate a birthday!

This week, I’ll be sharing three recipes with you. These recipes are how we celebrated Bryan’s birthday on a “less than we would have paid having a a fancy dinner out at a restaurant” price. All of the dishes were requested by Bryan, but I was given free creativity for preparation and presentation (although “no parsley” was another of the requests).

Hope you will enjoy reading about them (we sure enjoyed consuming them)!

Steak Tartare

Adapted from Chow’s Classic Steak Tartare

Ingredients

  • 350 grams high-quality fresh sirloin (buy this from a trusted butcher) – approximate cost $7.00
  • 1 fresh egg – approximate cost $0.30
  • 1/4 teaspoon sriracha hot sauce – approximate cost $0.05
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard – approximate cost $0.25
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce – approximate cost $0.20
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil – approximate cost $0.10
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt – approximate cost $0.05
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper – approximate cost $0.05
  • 3 teaspoons capers – approximate cost $0.75
  • 1 baguette – approximate cost $2.00

Method

  1. Slice the beef into very small (about 1/2 cm or smaller) pieces.
  2. Combine the beef slices, egg, sriracha, dijon mustard, worchestershire sauce, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper.
  3. Mix well.
  4. Move mixture to a serving bowl.
  5. Serve with slices of baguette and a side of capers.

Makes about 4 servings (approximate cost: $2.69 per serving) or 2 large servings (approximate cost: $5.36 per serving).

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Trout with Almond Slices, Lemon, Butter, Parsley, Pepper, and Capers

Last week, we celebrated Nana’s birthday with a family dinner. I worked from home in the morning and spent the afternoon running around town picking up groceries from various places, shopping for a birthday gift, picking my brother up from his first day at a new job, then home to make dinner.

It was a busy day. I was glad to end the day with a good, home-cooked meal and some time with my family. It was a very typical visit at home: cook, dinner, dessert, walk the dogs, visit a while longer, then I headed home.

Because I had the afternoon off, I got to plan dinner. Nana had specifically requested fish, any kind, so dad asked me to pick up trout. I also stopped by Herrle’s, a farmer’s market just outside town and picked up a bunch of fresh, local vegetables (tomatoes, cucumber, romaine lettuce, and green beans). For dessert, I baked a confetti cake (my family’s favourite). I’ll admit, I took the easy way out with the cake. I used an Angel Food cake mix from a box added a few sprinkles to the batter and a package of Dream whip for the frosting. It was delicious nonetheless.

We all pitched in to bring dinner together.

I chopped tomatoes and cucumber for the salad. My brother and his girlfriend cleaned and trimmed the massive amount of green beans. Dad prepped and baked the fish. My step mother cooked the potatoes on the barbecue. My brother finished working with the green beans quickly, so he helped me tear the romaine lettuce for the salad, then he blanched the green beans.

Amazingly, even with five cooks in the kitchen, we managed to have everything ready at the same time and sat down to a lovely family dinner.

Who cooks when you attend a family dinner? Just one cook or does everyone pitch in?

Trout with Almond Slices, Lemon, Butter, Parsley, Pepper, and Capers

Dad’s recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 large trout fillets – approximate cost $25.00
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice – approximate cost $1.00
  • 1/2 cup almond slices – approximate cost $1.00
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt – approximate cost $0.05
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper – approximate cost $0.15
  • 1 teaspoon parsley – approximate cost $0.15
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted – approximate cost $1.25
  • Capers for serving (optional) – approximate cost $1.50

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Rinse trout fillets with cold water.
  3. Lay fillets flat on a baking tray.
  4. Pat dry with a paper towel.
  5. Drizzle lemon juice and butter over the fish.
  6. Sprinkle fish with salt, pepper, parsley and almond slices.
  7. Bake until cooked through.
  8. Serve with capers and enjoy!

Makes 8 servings (approximate cost: $3.76 per serving).

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