. A new rule I set for myself is that I'm not allowed to make my favorite recipes from "At Home with Madhur Jaffrey" until I try at least five new recipes from the book. Everything has been so good that it's a shame to make the same things week after week. So, I started tonight with two new recipes from her book.
I bought a beautiful piece of salmon from Wilson Fish yesterday at the Ballard farmers market. There are several salmon recipes in the cookbook that sound delicious but the easiest sounding one was theGrilled Masala Salmon. I went with that. My fillet was 1.25lbs so I doubled the spices and used extra lemon juice in the sauce. It turned out delicious - perfectly cooked, perfectly flavored.
I also made her recipe for Carrots with Cilantro using red carrots from the farmers market. Delicious and easy.
We're addicted to rice in my house so I went looking for a recipe for coconut basmati rice. I settled on Bobby Flay's Coconut-Cashew Basmati Rice Salad, although I skipped the cashews and the coconut flakes. It paired perfectly with the salmon and carrots.
I also roasted some broccoli, adding garlic slices toward the end, and finishing with a squeeze of lime juice.
Great recipes to try if the flavors interest you. Time to get Madhur's cookbook if you don't already have it!
Next time you need to send flowers to a friend or loved one, or are hosting a party, call Fleurish for your floral needs. They do such beautiful arrangements and I especially love the ones they create that are short and compact. They're good at tall ones too though and did this great one below for my summer fiesta in a pot I got on sale at Anthropologie.
They have such an eye for mixing and matching flowers, greens and succulents with different colors and textures. They are also great to work with. If you're having a party, you can even bring them your own vases and containers. It cuts down on the cost and they can really tailor the arrangement to match the look and feel of the piece. I've loved working with them for both gifts and personal needs.
And to my husband - remember, it doesn't have to be a holiday to call 206-322-1602!
. Can't think of anything new and interesting to make? Try these Spiced Lentil Tacos. My friend Anne recommended them and they sound pretty darn good. Great recommendations in some of the reviews about using your own spices instead of a taco mix. Can't wait to try them myself.
/ I made this recipe for Eggplant Parmesan recently and thought it was delicious. It was a little more work than I anticipated, but worth every second in the end. I served to guests who said they loved it too. Eggplant is in season so a great time to try it.
. If you've ever taken a Bikram yoga class you'll appreciate this, and hopefully laugh hysterically as I did in a few parts. (Thank you Mountain Flow Yoga for making this the highlight of my boring Friday night!)
Yoga mat for sale. Used once at lunch hour class in December 2009. Usage timeline as follows:
Register for hot yoga class. Infinite wisdom tells me to commit to 5 class package and purchase a yoga mat. I pay $89.74. Money well spent, I smugly confirm to myself.
Open door to yoga room. A gush of hot dry air rushes through and past me. It smells of breath, sweat and hot. Take spot on floor in back of room next to cute blonde. We will date.
I feel the need to be as near to naked as possible. This is a problem because of the hot blonde to my left and our pending courtship. She will not be pleased to learn that I need to lose 30 pounds before I propose to her.
Begin small talk with my bride to be. She pretends to ignore me but I know how she can be. I allow her to concentrate and stare straight ahead and continue to pretend that I don't exist. As we finish sharing our special moment, I am suddenly aware of a sweat moustache that has formed below my nose. This must be from the all the whispering between us.
Instructor enters the room and ascends her special podium at the front of the room. She is a slight, agitated Chinese woman. She introduces me to the class and everyone turns around to greet me just as I decide to aggressively adjust my penis and testes packed in my Under Armor. My bride is notably unfazed.
Since I do have experience with Hot Yoga (4 sessions just 5 short years ago) I fully consider that I may be so outstanding and skilled that my instructor may call me out and ask me to guide the class. My wife will look on with a sparkle in her eye. We will make love after class.
It is now up to 95 degrees in the room. We have been practicing deep breathing exercises for the last 8 minutes. This would not be a problem if we were all breathing actual, you know, oxygen. Instead, we are breathing each other's body odor, expelled carbon dioxide and other unmentionables. (Don't worry, I'll mention them later.)
It is now 100 degrees and I take notice of the humidity, which is hovering at about 90%. I feel the familiar adorning stare of my bride and decide to look back at her. She appears to be nauseated. I then realize that I forgot to brush my teeth prior to attending this class. We bond.
It is now 110 degrees and 95% humidity. I am now balancing on one leg with the other leg crossed over the other. My arms are intertwined and I am squatting. The last time I was in this position was 44 years ago in the womb, but I'm in this for the long haul. My wife looks slightly weathered dripping sweat and her eyeliner is streaming down her face. Well, "for better or worse" is what we committed to so we press on.
The overweight Hispanic man two spots over has sweat running down his legs. At least I think its sweat. He is holding every position and has not had a sip of water since we walked in. He is making me look bad and I hate him.
I consider that if anyone in this room farted that we would all certainly perish.
It is now 140 degrees and 100% humidity. I am covered from head to toe in sweat. There is not a square millimeter on my body that is not slippery and sweaty. I am so slimy that I feel like a sea lion or a maybe sea eel. Not even a bear trap could hold me. The sweat is stinging my eyeballs and I can no longer see.
This room stinks of asparagus, cloves, tuna and tacos. There is no food in the room. I realize that this is an amalgamation of the body odors of 30 people in a 140 degree room for the last 55 minutes. Seriously, enough with the asparagus, ok?
140 degrees and 130% humidity. Look, bitch, I need my space here so don't get all pissy with me if I accidentally sprayed you with sweat as I flipped over. Seriously, is that where this relationship is going? Get over yourself. We need counseling and she needs to be medicated. Stat!
150 degrees and cloudy. And hot. I can no longer move my limbs on my own. I have given up on attempting any of the commands this Chinese chick is yelling out at us. I will lay sedentary until the aid unit arrives. I will buy this building and then have it destroyed.
I lose consciousness.
I have a headache and my wife is being a selfish bitch. I can't really breathe. All I can think about is holding a cup worth of hot sand in my mouth. I cannot remember what an ice cube is and cannot remember what snow looks like. I consider that my only escape might be a crab walk across 15 bodies and then out of the room. I am paralyzed, and may never walk again so the whole crab walk thing is pretty much out.
I cannot move at all and cannot reach my water. Is breathing voluntary or involuntary? If it's voluntary, I am screwed. I stopped participating in the class 20 minutes ago. Hey, lady! I paid for this frickin class, ok?! You work for me! Stop yelling at everyone and just tell us a story or something. It's like juice and cracker time, ok?
It is now 165 degrees and moisture is dripping from the ceiling. The towel that I am laying on is no longer providing any wicking or drying properties. It is actually placing additional sweat on me as I touch it. My towel reeks. I cannot identify the smell but no way can it be from me. Did someone spray some stank on my towel or something?
Torture session is over. I wish hateful things upon the instructor. She graciously allows us to stay and 'cool down' in the room. It is 175 degrees. Who cools down in 175 degrees? A Komodo Dragon? My wife has left the room. Probably to throw up.
My opportunity to escape has arrived. I roll over to my stomach and press up to my knees. It is warmer as I rise up from ground level - probably by 15 degrees. So let's conservatively say it's 190. I muster my final energy and slowly rise. One foot in front of the other. One foot in front of the other. Towards the door. Towards the door.
The temperature in the lobby is 72 degrees. Both nipples stiffen to diamond strength and my penis begins to retract into my abdomen from the 100 degree temp swing. I can once again breathe though so I am pleased. I spot my future ex wife in the lobby. We had such a good thing going but I know that no measure of counseling will be able to unravel the day's turmoil and mental scaring.
Arrive at Emerald City Smoothie and proceed to order a 32 oz beverage. 402 calories, 0 fat and 14 grams of protein -- effectively negating any caloric burn or benefit from the last 90 minutes. I finish it in 3 minutes and spend the next 2 hours writing this memoir.
Create Craigslist ad while burning final 2 grams of protein from Smoothie and before the "shakes" consume my body.
Note to self - check car for missing wet yoga towel in am.
. The Rosé flowed a little too easily this summer so I am looking for some ways to detox and head into the fall feeling healthy and fresh. I asked my naturopath (whom I love by the way in case you're looking for a good one in Seattle) gave me some ideas on how to detoxify from eating poorly and drinking too much vino all summer. Here are a few of her recommendations....
1. Dry skin brushing 2. Sauna 3. Hot shower 4. Epsom salt bath (20-30 minutes w/ 1-2 cups Epsom salt) 5. Detox tea 6. Drink more water (more than 1/3 of your body weight in ounces) 7. Acupuncture 8. Exercise (sweat!) 9. Yoga 10. Some type of a cleanse
There are lots of different cleanses available nowadays. There is of course the controversial "Master Cleanse" which I tried years ago after some friends raved about their results (glowing skin and increased energy to name a few). I think I made it about 8 long hours before realizing there was no chance in hell I could make it a full day, let alone 10. There are cleanses where you do a juice fast, elimination diets, raw food only, various shake versions, and more. Click here to see a detox menu that Gwyneth posted on Goop which seems a little more manageable since there's food involved. I've also heard good things from my friend Tara about the Thorne cleanse.
Have you done a cleanse? If so, which one and what did you think of it? Do you have any favorite detoxification methods? Do share! 0
Pretty cool how many Seattle restaurants have been getting national press lately, especially in The New York Times. We were at Delancey last night and while it is always great, sometimes they just knock it out of the park. Every pizza-lover should be required to go there when they offer padron peppers as an add-on. Throw that on a sausage pie and it's life changing. Best pizza ever. Everything was amazing, as usual. Here's what we ordered...
Jersey salad Billy's heirloom tomato salad with shallot basil vinaigrette Sausage pizza with padron peppers Crimini pizza with sausage White pie with preserved meyer lemon and sausage Wine, of course Salted chocolate chip cookie
A great way to learn new cooking tips and recipes is to hit your local farmers marker and eavesdrop. Yes, I said eavesdrop. It's a great way to learn about the vendors, learn who has the best bacon or berries, a new recipe for something you love or how to prepare something new to you. I've found that the customers buying large quantities of any one thing usually know what they're doing. Just the other day I watched a man spend over $100 on marbled salmon. I assume you don't spend that much money on salmon unless you know what you're doing so I asked him how he was going to prepare his fish and he gave me a recipe for cooking on cedar planks complete with his secret marinade recipe. Last week I overheard a woman raving about a lettuce mix so when it was my turn, I said I wanted whatever she bought. It was the "Wild & Spicy" salad mix from Alm Hill Gardens at the Ballard Market and it is the best salad mix I've ever tasted. I was dying for it all week and couldn't wait to load up today. It didn't really need anything - just some tomato and cucumber, oil & vinegar. I used some Pasta & Co. dressing for a little zip and of course salt & pepper. Best darn salad I've had all summer! Simple and delicious.
. My friend Marly got creative and made up this recipe one night. It's delicious! I've made it several times in the last week, serving it twice for friends. Everyone gobbles it up. It's great warm but just as good cold, and even good the next day, so you can make it ahead. I like it because it can act as both your veggie and your salad so I served it the other night with pasta and bread. Two birds with one stone. Green beans are in season right now so don't miss your chance to whip this up. It's easy and delicious.
Marly's Green Bean & Kale Salad
olive oil 2 or 3 handfuls of green beans, rinsed, ends clipped off, & cut in half or thirds a few large handfuls of chopped kale, 1/2 - 1 bunch 2-4 garlic cloves, minced fresh lemon juice, 1/2-1 lemon several splashes of soy sauce (1t - 1T, taste as you go) feta cheese (I used sheep's milk feta, Marly used herbed cream cheese from Trader Joes)
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat until hot. Add a generous amount of olive oil to the pan, then add green beans. Stir and saute for a few minutes. Add minced garlic and continue to stir so garlic doesn't burn. Add a little salt to the beans, then add some lemon juice. Add the chopped kale and a little more lemon juice. Stir to combine and saute for a few minutes. Lower heat to medium or medium-low and add some soy sauce. Saute the mixture until the kale is wilted. Turn off heat and sprinkle with feta. Serve immediately or allow to cool. .
"Instead of viewing an arch - you rise, you peak, you decline - view it as a staircase. Your body may fall apart, but on every level that really matters, you can ascend toward enlightenment, wisdom, and authenticity."