A College Girl's Guide to a Happy, Healthy Lifestyle!

Tag: dinner

Our First Christmas Dinner | ONE COOK, TWO BOOKS | Greek Fava and Grape Salsa with Mint

When it comes to December, my family goes all out. Christmas music is always playing, Christmas decorations are everywhere, and we all wear Christmas-Themed clothing.   I had quite an exhausting day. When I did finally get home this night, I decided that it would […]

A Brief Photo Diary of Missed Recipes!

Well hello there viewers! Welcome back to my blog. Today I’m just writing a very brief post that I promised to write. Though I continued on my journey with the cook-through challenge, I began to post less and less. These following pictures are of recipes […]

The Weather is Weird, Sometimes | Fasolakia | Roasted Salmon | Apple Fennel Salsa | Radish, Watercress, and Basil Salad | One Cook, Two Books

Compared to yesterday, today’s weather was completely different. I’m not sure if it was because of a combination of the fans blowing throughout the house and the dismal, rainy outside, but lunch time today called for some sort of warm, comfort food.

 

My brother, Jake, and I spent the morning binge watching a series on netflix. He and my parents left mid afternoon to go shopping for his dorm room supplies, leaving me to do whatever I needed to do for the day.

 

Spoiler Alert: I did essentially nothing.

 

The one thing that I did end up doing was cooking Mina Stone’s Fasolakia, or Braised Green Beans in Tomato and Olive Oil. I was a little nervous because the recipe seemed to be minimal in ingredients. Normally that would not alarm me, but the thing is… there were no real spices. Bay leaves, salt, and pepper. That’s it.

 

There was not a lot of active time for this recipe, so while it cooked I continued to neglect my school-related responsibilities and sat on my phone. Fast forward a little over an hour, and I went back to the pot of simmering veggies. I turned off the heat, poured an almost absurd amount of olive oil over the meal, and then served myself some.

Let me tell you: I was shocked at how amazing the dish turned out. I was so excited, in fact, that I ended up texting my mom begging her to get home soon so that she could try it too. I completely doubted this recipe, and regret that completely. This recipe was full of flavour, and the olive oil gave it an incredibly smooth texture.

The warmth, flavour, and texture all lead to an incredibly delicious dish for a cool summer afternoon.

 

But… what about the evening? I had more planned to cook to get rid of some ingredients in my fridge.

 

I knew I was going to be making Mina’s Roasted Salmon because the recipe was super fast and convenient, with minimal ingredients and tons of flavour. I let it cook for the required time, but found it was a little too raw on the inside for my family’s liking. We turned on the broiler and let it sit under there for a few minutes just to cook it through a little longer. While it cooked, I made Mina’s Apple Fennel Salsa and Radish, Watercress, and Basil Salad.

Everything turned out absolutely phenomenal, and all flavours meshed perfectly. My dad was awestruck at the salmon. Such simple ingredients gave it such a great flavour!

I was nervous about the Apple Fennel Salsa, because last time I had fennel (aka when I was like… in middle school) I absolutely detested it. Somehow, this salsa worked. The crunch from the fennel, and its fresh flavour was magnificent. The sweetness from the soft apple was scrumptious. The tartness from the lime added just the right zing to cut through the apple.

The Radish, Watercress, and Basil Salad was delicious as well. I called it “Stew Leonard’s in a Salad” because all of the flavours combined remind me of what Stew Leonard’s smells like. Is that weird?

 

Not to me, it’s not.

Anyways. The meal was perfect. We have a lot of leftovers which I’m guessing will end up turning into salmon patties topped with the salad and salsa, but we shall see!

The Hottest Day of Vacation So Far | Spanish Style Gazpacho | One Cook, Two Books

Well my friends… This is it. Thursday, August 17th was the hottest day of the Summer so far. Or at least, that’s how it felt.   I’m guessing it’s because we have had guests over for the past week and we’ve been spending the majority […]

I Made the Perfect Outdoor Dinner Indoors | “Grilled” Whole Fish – Greek Style | Latholemono | Heirloom Tomatoes with Feta and Mint | One Cook, Two Books

Not every Summer  day can be warm and sunny. Some days have to be rainy too!

 

I planned two lovely recipes to make today in hopes that it would be another warm evening, but the weather decided to change yesterday. Today, like the rest of the upcoming week, is supposed to be in the 70s and cloudy. That’s not quite optimal for eating outside late at night, but I guess I have to work with what I have been given!

 

Tonight I made three of Mina Stone’s recipes:

 

“Grilled” Whole Fish – Greek Style

Latholemono (Olive Oil and Lemon Dressing)

Heirloom Tomatoes with Feta and Mint

 

I think one thing in particular that I really enjoyed about these recipes were how they didn’t take much time to make when made all together. All of the recipes synced perfectly and ended up finishing around the same time!

 

I started with the fish.

I have NEVER cooked something like this before in my life, let alone even held a whole fish. The local fishmonger was a lot of help with both picking a fish and even gave me some advice for future recipes. Though the recipe called for the spine to be taken out later, he asked if I just wanted it done now. Because this was the first time I was going to be making a whole fish, I opted for him to just do it for me… Ease me into the process of whole fish cooking!

 

Mind you, I also realized that I messed up. Big time. The recipe called for one fish per person…

 

…but I only bought one fish.

 

To split between four people.

 

Luckily enough we had some Codd in our freezer, so we pulled that out and seasoned it the same way we did the whole fish.

As the whole fish went to the broiler, I made the Latholemono sauce. It was a very simple seasoned lemon olive oil. I actually made a little more than what the recipe called for because my father just made fresh bread and I knew we would need some extra for dipping when the time came!

Finished the sauce. Flipped the fish. Time to begin the tomatoes!

 

I was very excited for this dish, and have been since I saw the picture in the cook book. The tomatoes look so simple, yet when looking at the ingredients I knew that they were going to be packed with enormous flavour.

 

And I was right. They sure were.

I set up all of the dishes on our small kitchen table. It was like having an indoor garden party! I automatically started eating the tomato dish because that was what I was most anxiously waiting for. Boy, I’m glad I started with that. The brine from the feta and the olives really complimented the tang from the micro greens, and by having only fresh ingredients the taste of the olive oil really stood out.

That’s always super important. If you spend a lot of money on a good olive oil, you want to be able to taste that olive oil in your dishes. I sure did in this one!

I think I also lucked out with the fish. We split the whole fish into four pieces and filled the rest of our plates with Codd. Everyone at the table seemed to have quite a lot of bones in their fish… yet somehow I had only one.

 

I think it was karma giving me luck for cooking dinner.

 

And I’ll accept that.

 

So the dreary, cold, rainy day turned out to be a wonderful indoor experience. The combination of the weather with the comfort of being in close quarters was the perfect atmosphere.

 

Honestly… I kind of hope it’s going to be the same tomorrow when I cook soup, the most comforting food there is!