Salmon with Spinach

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I haven’t shared a recipe for a while.

As you know, I try to keep things relatively simple in the kitchen.  Easy and healthy are my goals these days.

Last night, I made this — and it is defiantly going to be added into my repertoire of go-to recipes.

 

I preheated the oven to 400 degrees (I like to cook things on high heat).

Then I lined a cookie sheet with parchment paper and add heaping bunches of fresh spinach.

I then placed salmon fillets (with some salt and pepper) on top of the spinach, and topped the salmon with chopped up olives with garlic and tarragon.

10 minutes in the oven.  A few minutes to rest after cooking.  The result was tasty and filling.

 

Hope that you had a good weekend!

BAKED AVOCADOS

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If I could have anything for breakfast, it would probably be toast.  I haven’t cut bread out of my life completely, but instead I have been really focusing on making a breakfast that keeps me filled and satisfied for hours.  This idea might sound strange, but I assure you that it’s really tasty.  Simply cut an avocado lengthwise in half and remove the pit.  Crack an egg on top and bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.  I like to add a little sea salt and red pepper flakes (Aleppo pepper to be exact – I am smitten with its mild smokey flavor).

SHRIMP SALAD

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Recently, I have been enjoying incorporating shrimp into my diet.  Tasty, filling and a low calorie option!  I composed this salad together recently with butter lettuce, watermelon radishes, avocados, blanched green beans and cherry tomatoes.  I made a vinaigrette with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and a shallot.  I thought that the flavors went really nicely together.   If you are looking for an easy salad for a lunch or dinner, give this a try.  Enjoy!

AUTUMN SALAD

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The weather has cooled down a bit and I was trying to come up with a new seasonal salad.

This one is rather easy to whip together and the flavors pair quite nicely together.

 

Autumn salad

Fresh mint

Pomegranate

Fennel (2 bulbs)

Lemon

Garlic clove

Salt and Pepper

Olive oil

 

Take the fennel and cut it into thin slices.  Alternatively, if you have a mandolin, shave into thin slices.

Chop fresh mint, add the seeds from a pomegranate and toss with lemon juice, a minced garlic clove, oil and salt and pepper.

 

Perfect for the beginning of fall.

Kale, etc.

 

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Remember how I said was only was sharing three photos from my trip to Maine?  Well, I lied.

This was also a favorite – but needed a post of its own.

Kale. I know I have mentioned it more than a few times.  It is certainly the veggie of the moment.  But this stopped me in my tracks – or in this case, in my car – to pull over and come to an abrupt halt – to investigate a little closer.  A simple sign on the side of the road that said “Kale, etc,” next to a cooler.   Opening the cooler, I found numerous bags of freshly picked kale (from the owner’s garden off in the distance) and a cup that simply said, “$1 a bag.”  The deal of the century in my head…so I purchased all they had: three bags. And left my $3 in the cup.   This whole situation really has had me thinking.  Such a level of trust for someone to put out a cooler based solely on the honor system.   I wouldn’t ever think about pulling over and stealing kale.  But does this happen?  Would someone pull over to take the money?  It makes me feel good that there are people out there that are so trusting.  Because you are dying to know (I am sure): the kale was some of the best that I have ever had.  Farm fresh and just picked hours before.  How can you go wrong?  And for $1 a bunch?  Wow.

Practice Makes Perfect

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Sometimes I make recipes that don’t turn out.  This was the case a few weeks ago. I attempted to make crepes for dinner one night.  I’m not really sure what went wrong, but let’s just say that the end result wasn’t anything that resembled a crepe.

I’m happy that I tried again this weekend.  Turns out it’s pretty basic.  Here is my perfected recipe.  The filling of these are up to you.  I made these with a little bit of mozzarella, an egg and fresh chives for the filling.

 

Crepe recipe

(makes 8)

 

1 cup of flour (use gluten-free flour if you prefer)

4 eggs (for batter); additional for filling

3 tablespoons melted butter

1.5 cups of milk

salt and pepper

 

Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl with a whisk or fork until mixture is smooth (around 30 seconds).

Let batter sit at room temperature for around 10 minutes.  Whisk again just prior to cooking.

 

Heat a nonstick pan on medium.  Add 1/4 cup of batter and swirl to completely cover bottom of pan.

Cook around 2 minutes on each side (until golden brown).

 

Place cooked crepes on a plate and stack them on top of each other.

 

Preheat oven to 350.  Place 4 crepes on a baking sheet (I like to line it with parchment.)  Add your base filler to each crepe.  This could be the cheese of your choice or spinach or whatever you wish.  Then crack 1 egg in the center of each and fold edges toward the center.  Season with salt and pepper.  Bake until egg white is set and yolk is still runny (Around 8-10 minutes.)

End of Summer Salad

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Tomatoes are one of my favorite things about summer.  With the season slowly coming to an end, it seems like I’m trying to incorporate them into just about every meal.

This salad was so easy and flavorful.  The crunch of the cucumber and the sweetness of the tomatoes and the salty of the feta with the brightness of the mint just all play together so well.

 

End of Summer Salad

 

Cucumbers

Tomatoes

Feta (or goat cheese)

Fresh mint

 

I chopped each of the items and then layered them.  I then just tossed everything in a little bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar with some freshly ground pepper.   I didn’t add salt- as the feta already adds that to the salad. Enjoy!

Hail Caesar

 

kale ceasar

Kale certainly seems to be the vegetable of the moment.   If I had known, I would have gotten in on the action and started a farm!

I have to admit that I have had kale in just about every which way you can imagine.  So I am always excited when I figure out a new way to try it.   I made this for Labor Day and I am convinced that you could create a convert of someone who doesn’t like kale – or even trick your kids into eating it.

The trick to this one was the yummy homemade Caesar dressing.  This entire plateful used less than a tablespoon of the dressing.  I could have eaten plate after plate.   In place of croutons I substituted baked chickpeas and added a bit of shaved Parmesan cheese.

I can tell this is going to be a new favorite!  I have discovered I like cooking with Lacinato kale the best.  So if you have an option, that’s my suggestion.

 

Kale Caesar salad with chickpea “croutons”

 

Dressing:

1 clove of fresh garlic (minced)

1/4 cup of mayonnaise

1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard

Juice of one lemon

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup of shaved Parmesan

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons of water (maybe a bit more) to thin out the dressing if needed

Pinch of salt and pepper

Put all of the ingredients in a jar with a lid and shake well.  Note:  This makes quite a bit of dressing.  Keep the extra in the refrigerator to use another day.

 

Chickpea “Croutons”

1 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans

1 tablespoon olive oil

Pinch of salt and pepper

Drain and rinse canned beans.  Spread on a baking sheet.  Toss with oil and salt and pepper.  Bake at 400 degrees for around 20 minutes.

Guacamole Hummus

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Can’t decide between hummus and guacamole?  Why not have both?
Last weekend I whipped up a batch of it and it was gone before I knew it.
Guacamole Hummus
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 handfuls of fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove
1 ripe avocado
2 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons- extra- virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon or lemon or lime juice
salt/pepper
In a food processor, add in chickpeas, cilantro, garlic, and avocado.  Pulse until finely chopped.  With the machine running, slowly add in the olive oil, lemon or lime juice and water, until the mixture is smooth.  Season with salt and pepper and serve with tortilla chips or carrots sticks or whatever you like.

Peach Gazpacho

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Last week I shared my table settings for my Supper Club dinner party, so this week- I thought I would share one of the recipes from the dinner.  I had this at one of my favorite San Francisco restaurant – Piccino a few weeks ago and knew that I had to recreate it for Supper Club.  I love gazpacho because it is so refreshing and healthy.  Adding in peaches- fresh from the farmers market seemed like a perfect summer soup to start the meal.

 
Peach Gazpacho (Serves 10)

 
Ingredients:

4 slices of white bread 

½ cup of water

1 red bell pepper, seeded

2 lbs of tomatoes

2 ripe peaches

2 cloves of garlic

3 Tablespoons of red wine vinegar

¼ cup of olive oil

Green Tabasco – 5 dashes- add more if you like it spicy

Salt and pepper

Garnish: diced cucumber and cilantro

 
Directions:

1. In the bowl of a food processor, soak the bread in the water until soft.

2. Add in the pepper, tomatoes, peaches, garlic and vinegar.  Blend until smooth.

3. With the motor running, add in the olive oil and seasonings.

4. Add more Tabasco if you want more of a kick.

5. Garnish with diced cucumber and cilantro. And enjoy!

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