Roasted pheasant stuffed with wild rice served with pomegranate and persimmon sauce makes a flavorful winter dish.
In the world of canned tuna, there’s much more than Starkist or Bumble Bee. Water packed tuna was all the rage a few decades ago for those eating on the lean side but oil packed, especially olive oil packed is the best choice for ultimate flavor – even if you just eat it out of the can with a fork. A multitude of tuna salads can reach ethereal heights if made with high quality tuna and our home canned fish will provide the back bone for this chunky, no-cook pasta sauce.
Filet Mignon of Salmon with Marionberry Catsup – “Filet Mignon” conjures up visions of a lean and tender cut of prime beef either simply grilled or lavishly dressed up with extravagant accoutrement such as fois gras, mushrooms, truffles and rich sauces like Tournedos Rossini. However they appear, they are special. Some years back, American menus started offering “Surf and Turf” – entrées loaded with meat and seafood for hungry diners who wanted to strap on the old feedbag, or so to speak. I never cared for such hedonistic platters but I do love the idea of bringing surf to the table dressed up like turf. Besides, just try to find a suitable wine for both red meat and seafood.
The idea of pairing bacon and fish had never occurred to me until Charles and I tasted the fillet mignon of ahi encrusted with bacon at Atlantic restaurant in Baltimore. The memory of that meal inspired me to create this dish using Oregon albacore tuna. I’ve always loved the taste of pomegranate so I’ve incorporated it into a red wine and balsamic reduction as a sauce that goes perfectly with the tuna and greens.
Most people squeeze lemon juice on oysters in the half shell and then dunk them in cocktail sauce or ground horseradish, but I’ve always enjoyed the fresh flavor of mirin and ponzu and was inspired by a recipe for cucumber salsa for oysters in chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s book Nobu West. I added a twist of my own and served them to Mom and Charles, who eagerly gulped down my test bivalves. I broke with my usual abstinence and ate one too.
Dinner was my responsibility on this particular evening, and how does one follow a brunch where just “tasting” a little of everything adds up to a gargantuan meal? We had leftover miner’s lettuce from the Saturday market and Vic wanted to use that up. When he asked what I planned to make, all I said was, “Scallops with miner’s lettuce!”
Utilizing a seared scallop recipe from Fine Cooking Magazine and building a salad made for a delicious and light Sunday dinner.
Living in Oregon now, I often ache for my homeland. It seems so far away. The last time I went home to Thailand was in 2007, and it brought back to life so many memories from my distant childhood that had begun to grow dim and fade with time. One of my fondest memories grew out […]
I had not heard of razor clams until our arrival in the Pacific Northwest. At the market they are as elusive as wild truffles, seasonal wild mushrooms and fiddlehead ferns. If you find them fresh, change your dinner plans and prepare for a bivalve buffet. Option B, check for tides and conditions and forage your own. Option C, buy frozen. They do freeze well but you may have to purchase by the pound in set quantities.
In my opinion, forget the fancy or complicated preparations for these clams; simply pan-fried is best. Truthfully, there are many recipes for razors, just like other varieties, so if you prefer, get-a-googling and find one that suits you. Because of their enormous size, one clam, maybe two, should constitute an entree for one adult. Think clam steak!
Wherever you find a carnival, a state or county fair, you will surely find abundant, itinerant street food and some form of corn dogs have been a part of that culture for decades.
These days, with many chefs and cooks thinking outside the box, variations on the original recipes begin to appear. Inspiration for Corny Shrimp Pups came from a Neiman Marcus cookbook that I recently purchased at Tuesday Morning for a song.
Shortly after Jeff DeSantis poured everyone a shell of Emily’s Ember, our servers presented the first course, Tempura of Shrimp and Oregon Dungeness Crab Beignets with Remoulade Sauce. Bringing Japanese and Creole elements together made a perfect first course. The crunch of the tempura batter was beautifully offset by the soft crab beignets and both paired well with the remoulade sauce. Without directly asking the chef, I have a hunch that a touch of Emily’s Ember was in the tempura batter and the semi-spicy remoulade.
With the first sip and bite, we knew we were in for a special treat.
Being an avid outdoorsman has one drawback: Sometimes I have too much bounty from the activities I enjoy — fishing, clamming and crabbing. To keep the family from getting bored, I draw on another favorite activity — creative cooking. Fishing, clamming and crabbing at the seashore in Oregon can be a tricky thing. First, you have […]
The martini is perhaps the most romanticized and bastardized alcoholic wallop ever invented. Among famous martini aficionados are Winston Churchill, FDR, Ernest Hemingway, Cary Grant and the fictional James Bond who preferred his “shaken, not stirred” and with vodka. H. L. Mencken once called the martini “the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet.”
Does martini always = cocktail? What about shrimp cocktail? Why not an ample serving of simply dressed crabmeat presented in the same glass. My vision of a crab martini will be beautiful, unadulterated crabmeat dressed as simply as possible, allowing the sweetness of the crab to command center stage.
The foods of Spain are equally as rich in history and flavor as those of the Greeks and Romans and are tinged with abundant Moorish touches. Gwyneth’s Clams was inspired by a dish the four foodies enjoyed at Casa Pintos in Cambados. They were enthralled with the freshness, simplicity and the inclusion of fresh bay laurel and a copious amount of Albariño wine.
Sometimes adapting a recipe can be a tricky thing when you start substituting ingredients. And when you adapt a complicated recipe like Julia Child’s Lobster Thermidor, it gets even more daunting, especially when you’re replacing the main ingredient, lobster, with Dungeness crab. It can be one of those kitchen experiences where you feel like you’re […]
I have been pondering writing an article on “cooking with intention” for The Taste of Oregon for some time now. For those of us who enjoy cooking passionately, is it always entered into and experienced with a feeling of joy and excitement? Where is our mind? Nothing can spoil a pleasurable experience more than chatter between our ears, nagging us: “You didn’t start early enough, you don’t have all the ingredients, you’re out of your league, no one will like this, pickled pork is so passé,” etc., etc., etc. Fortunately, I learned some methods for silencing that chatter. After a brief “negotiation” with my mind’s voice I hear it whimpering, “OK, you win, I’ll shut up.”
I first tasted smoked trout when we lived in Baltimore. At a farmers’ market near our home, owners of the Metropol Café had a booth where they served all kinds of smoked seafood as well as cheeses. I remember the wonderful aroma and flavor of the smoked trout. One of the two women had gone […]
In the wintertime most of the U.S. is gripped by snow, freezing weather, or some combination of the two. In Oregon, we have the winter monsoons. It rains almost daily from November until April. Most of the time it’s a civilized, spritzing kind of rain, where you don’t need head gear. Sometimes it’s a heavier […]
Making a gumbo can be a religious experience and shouldn’t be attempted when you’re short on time. Most will agree that any gumbo will begin with a dark roux and can be thickened further with the okra or filé powder (ground sassafras leaves). Not wanting to be exclusive, I use all three.
If you read this blog regularly, you know of our love for all things from seas, lakes and rivers. My first encounter with stuffed shrimp came at the Clear Creek Inn in Kemah, Texas. Kemah is on Galveston Bay near Johnson Space Center. Many restaurants in that part of the country are seldom fancy; they’re there to simply serve up the freshest seafood available. It was one of the famous Gulf of Mexico hurricanes that dealt my favorite Kemah restaurant its final blow.
In the great crab race, there are those who believe that Alaska’s King Crabs get the checkered flag and beat all other decapod crustaceans for flavor. When Charles and I lived in Baltimore, Md., and Fort Worth, Tex., we were in the stands cheering on the sleek Blue Crab while the rambunctious Floridians were raising […]
When you get adventurous with food, sometimes you just want to drag your friends along, whether or not they know what they’re getting into. Lately I’ve been having this craving for something from my childhood in Thailand—Periwinkle snails—and I was thrilled to finally find that I could get some at Om Seafood in Portland and […]
Most people work all day at a stressful job in an office and then, to blow off steam, go work out at a windowless indoor gym somewhere. In Oregon, you can still go to an indoor gym, but why do that when there’s so much more you can do outdoors? Right around the end […]
Being a Buddhist, I don’t believe in killing animals for the sake of sport. But that has its drawbacks when you’re angling on the wave-soaked rocks of Garibaldi’s north jetty. I’m thinking back to the first time that I took my partner, Charles Price, jetty fishing with me. I was happy to rig his line […]
As a child growing up in Bangkok, I remember going to the markets with my mother and seeing tanks teeming with live fish, eels, crabs, snails and clams, and tubs filled with live mudfish, frogs and other sea creatures. We could select our dinner live, and take it home so that it was as fresh […]
My inspiration to make a seafood sausage came from a cookbook I purchased many years ago called Spa Food, by Edward J. Safdie, a beautiful pictorial book with recipes from The Sonoma Mission Inn. In there is a photo and recipe for their Seafood Sausage which is described as “a delicate sole mousse mixed with fresh herbs, diced seafood and sautéed greens.” Other than the preparation method, that's all I needed to take off on my own.
The one thing that I quickly learned from Oregon natives after moving here is you can’t let the weather deter you. The weather in Salem or Portland can be nice and sunny, but by the time you get to the coast an hour to the west, it can be blustery and rainy. You just […]