Week of March 02, 2015

Happy March! I can’t believe how quickly February flew by… Granted, it’s the shortest month — but still! I suppose this only means we are closer to summer. Yay!

I spent most of the week training at my new job. I am so excited to start! T minus 8 days..

Monday – Crispy Brussels sprouts

Photo cred: Minimalist Baker
Photo cred: Minimalist Baker

I recently discovered the Minimalist Baker, a wonderful food blog with healthful, delicious recipes like this one. I will serve this with a piece of pan-fried fresh fish.


  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts, rinsed and dried
  • 3-4 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
Sriracha aioli
  • 3/4 cup hummus
  • 1 tbsp Sriracha
  • 1/2 a lemon, juiced
  • pinch each sea salt + garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar


  1. Preheat a large skillet to medium high heat and cut any large Brussels sprouts in half.
  2. Add to a mixing bowl and toss with a generous amount of oil and season generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Once the pan is hot, add a bit more oil to the pan and only as many sprouts as will fit without crowding the pan. Cover and cook for 1 minute, then use tongs to toss and turn over halved sprouts to cook both sides evenly. Cover once more and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Shake the pan once more to toss the sprouts and then cover for another 30 seconds.
  4. Remove from heat and immediately add back to the (empty) mixing bowl and top with minced garlic and season again with salt and pepper. Continue cooking other batches until all of the sprouts are sautéed. Serve hot with the Sriracha aioli, and Parmesan cheese or fresh herbs if desired.

Tuesday – White beans and charred broccoli

Photo cred: Bon Appetit
Photo cred: Bon Appetit

This recipe came in my veggie basket this week, and I thought it would be a tasty, filling vegetarian meal.


  •  2 cups dried white beans
  • 3 oz. Parmesan with rind
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 1 garlic clove, halved crosswise
  • 1 1/2 lb. broccoli, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
  • 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil
  • 2 strips lemon zest, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Soak beans overnight. The next day, drain and place in a large heavy pot. Remove rind from Parmesan and add rind along with onion and garlic to beans. Pour in water to cover and season with salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, adding water as needed to keep beans submerged, until beans are tender, about 2 hours. Let cool.
  2. Discard vegetables and Parmesan rind, then drain. Preheat oven to 450°. Toss broccoli with ¼ cup oil on a baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and lightly charred, 15–20 minutes. Let cool.
  3. Finely chop half of broccoli and toss in a large bowl with drained and finely chopped anchovies, lemon zest, lemon juice, and beans. Shave half of Parmesan over and add remaining broccoli and ¼ cup oil; toss and season with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice. Shave remaining Parmesan over.

Wednesday – Seared fish with tomato and dill sauce

Photo cred: Ricardo
Photo cred: Ricardo

Saturday night was date night, and JW cooked the most amazing dinner for me. It was exactly the kind of meal I love, and we enjoyed it with a bottle of tart white wine. I plan on making it again Wednesday — it was just so good!!! The original recipe is (unsurprisingly) from Ricardo.


  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 5 plum tomatoes, cubed
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • 4 white fish fillets (we used cod)
  • 1/4 cup unbleached all­ purpose flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a saucepan, heat a drizzle of olive oil and cook the shallot and garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes, water, herbs, fish sauce, sugar, lime juice and hot sauce, and bring to a boil. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Season the fish with salt and pepper. In a plate, coat the fish in flour. Set aside.
  3. In a large non­stick skillet, heat a drizzle of olive oil and brown the fish for 2 to 4 minutes per side or until the desired doneness (depending on the selected fish, cooking time may vary). Serve the fish hot, topped with the tomato sauce.

Thursday – Sicilian sausage stew

Photo cred: All Recipes
Photo cred: All Recipes

It’s not spring just yet! We’ve had a cold front recently and I have been craving some good comfort food exactly like this.


  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1/8 tsp fennel seeds
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup small pasta (e.g., farfalle, penne)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a large pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Stir in sausage, onion and fennel seeds and cook until sausage is brown, 10 minutes. Stir in carrots and celery and continue to cook and stir until vegetables begin to color, 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, parsley, basil and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, until vegetables are tender.
  2. Stir in pasta, salt and pepper, cook until pasta is tender, 10 minutes more. Serve topped with grated Parmesan.

Friday – Roasted beet and fennel salad

Photo cred: Food & Wine
Photo cred: Food & Wine

Beets and fennel are in season and are, again, in my basket this week. I will combine them in this tasty salad which I will serve with grilled chicken or fish.


  • 1 1/2 lb beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large fennel bulb with fronds—bulb cut into 1/2-inch wedges, 1 tablespoon chopped fronds
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • 4 oz goat cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. In a medium baking dish, toss the beets with the thyme, the water and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and cook for about 40 minutes, or until tender. Let cool slightly. Discard the thyme.
  2. In a small baking dish, drizzle the fennel wedges with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes longer, or until tender and lightly browned.
  3. Pour the beet juices into a bowl and whisk in the vinegar. Add the beets, fennel wedges and fronds and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature with goat cheese crumbled on top.

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