Sunday, April 22, 2012

Journey From Sloth and Despair: The Seafood Edition

A few days ago, I went shopping all by myself.  Bliss. 

I decided that I was going to be brave and buy some things I've never tried.  Some of which I've never even CONSIDERED trying.  But if doing Indonesian cooking lessons has taught me anything, it's that the weird-looking stuff sometimes tastes awesome.


I bought a can of salmon.  Yes, I know.  Not too adventurous.  But, I'd never bought any before (canned) and I had just heard a thing on NPR about eating sustainable foods, and canned salmon is high on the list!  So BAM, into the cart.

Then I bought kale.  I have had kale before, but this time I was going to try to get the rest of the family to eat some.  BAM.  Into the cart. 

My final excitement was swordfish!  I do love fish, but never seem to get it since my family is not a fish family (that one was for you, Steven).  PLOP.  Into the cart.

Now that I"m home with all my sea-related bounty, what to do?  Well, I decided to throw a 'seafood-tasting' dinner.  Here's how it all went down:

Reheated mashed potatoes from yesterday's dinner.  CHECK.

Small shrimp, thawed in cold water, then dunked in egg, and then dropped into cornmeal that had about a teaspoon of "grill seasoning" added into it. Fried them in shallow oil.

Took the canned salmon and drained it (like canned tuna), mixed it with crushed Saltines, some dried dill, and some finely chopped parsley (plus salt and pepper).  Formed into little patties, dunked in the egg, then into the cornmeal.  Fried in shallow oil.

Took the piece (only .6 of a pound) of swordfish and coated it in some Teriyaki marinade.  Heated some oil in a small pan until very hot, and seared each side for a few minutes.  Then put it on an oiled baking sheet and finished in the oven while I finished making the salmon cakes.

I like kale chips but hadn't foisted them on the family before.  I washed the kale in the sink, ripping into pieces and removing the tough stems.  Put kale onto a kitchen towel and mostly dried it.  Divided it onto two baking sheets.  Poured a bit of olive oil over the leaves and tossed.  In the first sheet, I sprinkled the kale with garlic powder, cumin, and some kosher salt (too much salt, as it turned out).
The other kale got about 1-2 tsp. of sugar and some cinnamon.  (I know!  I was experimenting).
Baked them at about 450F for a few minutes, tossed the leaves about a bit, and added a few more minutes. 

Served all with whole tiny bell peppers (raw), some homemade shrimp cocktail sauce (horseradish and ketchup). 

Kids liked the salmon cakes! WoW!  So did I.
Everybody liked the shrimp.
Daughter liked the kale, son tolerated it. (Cinnamon ones were surprisingly good)
Potatoes went over fine.
All liked the Swordfish.  Actually, I prefer tuna steaks, but this was fine.
All liked the teeny bell peppers.
I was the only one who tried the spicy sauce.

Now I know that I can safely make shrimp or salmon to rave reviews, and I can serve swordfish as long as there's something else to fill them up, since they were more lukewarm on that. And hopefully, son will come around to liking kale chips as much as daughter.  Bell peppers will now go into lunchboxes!

I give today a B+.

3 comments: said...

I love the idea of having a handful of things to try--nobody is hungry and resentful AND you have several safe bets for future meals.

I'm really leaning toward trying to make kale chips. Finally.

V and A said...

I always hear about Kale and want to buy and make it but I'm scared.. lol. Thanks for posting what you did with it, I might just have to go and try it now

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