Monday, February 29, 2016

Lemon Parsley Salmon over Lemon Butter String Beans

This recipe is fast and healthy.  It's also a great way to get kids to like fish because it's still crunchy like its fried.  It's high in protein, and low in fat and carbohydrates.  This is the perfect week night meal for anyone looking to incorporate more fish in their diet.  I'm not going to rant on and on, because I think that about covers it!!

Lemon Parsley Salmon over Lemon Butter String Beans
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Serves: 2

2 lbs wild caught salmon
1/4 cup fresh parsley
Zest of one lemon
Juice of one lemon, divided in halves
1/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
1 garlic clove
1 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp of olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1 lbs fresh string beans
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper
1tsp red pepper flakes

1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and move the rack as close to the top of the oven as possible.

2. While the oven is preheating cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

3. Place the salmon skin side down on the aluminum foil and dry top well with paper towels.

4. Once the salmon is dry sprinkle with salt and pepper.

5. Remove the skin from the garlic and cut into thirds to make it easier for processing.

5. Put garlic and parsley in food processor and Pulse on high until well incorporated.

6. Into the food processor add red pepper flakes, panko bread crumbs, lemon zest, half of the lemon juice, and one tablespoon of olive oil.  Pulse until well incorporated.

7. Press mixture into the salmon

8. Drizzle with 1 tsp of olive oil

9. Once your oven is at 400 degrees place salmon on top rack for 10-12 minutes (depending on the thickness of the fish).

10.  While the salmon is cooking bring enough water to a boil to cover the string beans. 

11. Remove ends and stems of string beans and place in boiling water for 3 minutes or until they turn bright green. Drain and return to pot.

12.  Squeeze in other half of lemon juice, 1 tbsp of butter,  and sprinkle with salt and pepper and mix well. Cover with a lid to keep warm. 

13. Remove salmon and allow to rest for 2 minutes.  Once rested use a spatula to remove the salmon skin which should slid off easily.

14.  Cut in half (if using one big filet) and serve each serving over the divided string beans.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Quick Roasted Baby Bok Choy

Bok Choy seems like an odd vegetable to most. It's probably something you'd have no idea what to do with.  You also probably have seen it in the grocery story and thought it was spinach with a celery stalk bottom.  It's very similar to that.  Honestly  simply roasting it brings out its sweetness and the char on the leaves makes it crunchy.  Quick roasting it keeps it firm but chewable, which in my opinion makes you think your eating a lot more than you are. 

This vegetable is also perfect for prepping. In under 25 minutes I just made this and roasted asparagus to eat as snacks!  Combine the both with a meat or fish and you have a protein packed and healthy carb meal. 

Quick Roasted Baby Bok Choy 
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10- 12 minutes 
Serves: 2

1 pound baby Bok Choy
1 tsp olive oil 
Sea salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

2. While your oven is preheating cut the ends off of the Bok Choy and clean well with cold water.

3. Dry completely.

4.  Cover a baking sheet with tin foil and arrange Bok Choy on sheet with the green leaves facing inward.
5. Drizzle olive oil.  

6. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

7.  Bake for 10-12 minutes until ends are translucent and leaves are wilted.


Sunday, February 7, 2016

The Best Food Ever: Cheese Fries with Short Rib Gravy, The Pour House:Westmont, NJ

The Best Food Ever: Cheese Fries with Short Rib Gravy, The Pour House: Westmont, NJ.

Shoestring french fries, covered in pulled short ribs and gravy, smothered in am american cheese sauce. 

In honor of the fact I love food,  I want to start a series on this blog called: The Best Food Ever.  I would love to claim this idea as my own,  but I cannot.  This is a series on the Food Network called "The Best Thing I Ever Ate:".    But since most of my followers are in the Southern New Jersey area,  I wanted to make this similar to the food network,  but more attainable for readers.

I'd like to consider myself a foodie, and a Beer-ie?  As a child, food was always important.  I learned to cook from my amazing father.  Probably the most important thing he ever taught me.  That and a strong work ethic.  At around 16 beer became important too.  But more like Boone's Farm and Natty Ice.  I wouldn't go back to those days,  unless your offering some MadDog 20/20 and some Vladdimir Vodka,  then nothing is off the table.

I wanted to start a part of this blog to show case local eats.  Local eats that blow my mind to be exact.  Zach actually loves these cheese fries so much, he once ordered a burger and asked for the short rib gravy on the fries that  come with it.  This was after we already ate the Short Rib Fries as an Appetizer...  Yes,  it's that good.  One Appetizer that can be shared between four people is just not enough apparaentally. 

I recommend pairing this appetizer with a cold beer.  Or if it's before 11:00am,  a Blood Mary.  I'm not judging you.  There isn't too much else you need in life.  Cold beer,  ewy gooey fries, man by your side (is that a country song?)  If that's what heaven is like (with puppies), passing on to the other side can't be half bad.

First,  lets address the digs:   The Pour House, Westmont, NJ It's easy to find,  and a short drive from most places in Southern New Jersey.  It's a small town environment,  and not fancy at all.  Just what this blogger likes.  The beer selection is massive,  which makes the place need a scrolling huge flat screen with the beer choices on it.  Your table also has a beer menu,  which more looks like a small novel.  The waitresses are friendly, and will suggest different beers suited to your tastes.    I'm not shy about hops so I like to try different beers.  My go to there however is any Lagunitas beer or any Allagesh. Wednesday nights are buck-a-shuck oysters,  which I also recommend if you like oysters.   The place is rather small,  so it gets packed quickly.  Get there early,  secure a bar seat or table,  and drink all day.

The Pour House is owned by PJ Whelihans.  And I know that when I first found that out my mind was blown.  I am not a big PJ's fan.  I always thought it was too chain like.  Like an Applebee's but with different food selections.  The Pour House, if you feel like me,  will change your whole outlook on PJ's.  It will likely become your go-to.  They also recently revamped the menu,  and they added this nice fried chicken slider delight.  If you are going all in on the Short Rib Fries,  I recommend this new tasty chicken sandwich: The Spicy Fried Chicken Sandwich which is buttermilk fried chicken breast, pickles, sriracha mayo,  on a small little potato bun which makes them simply delightful.
I also recommend the Kickin Crunch Burger.  And that after you eat all of these things,  you should check your sugar.  This place isn't meant to be eaten at three times a week,  unless your into heart attacks and diabetes.  HOWEVERRRRRR,  the salads are phenomenal too if your trying to show everyone how healthy you are.  I am a big fan of the Beer Can Chicken Salad,  which let's be real,  probably still has about 800-1,000 calories.

Let's dissect these perfect French fries by starting with the base,  the fries.  I can't think of anything better then skinny French Fries.   It's like "I wanna be fat, but not too fat." But then you add the ewy gooey short rib gravy and a belt buckle must be undone.  A well deserved new hole you make with a kitchen knife on the old belt. I'm about that life. I do recommend you fit in some sort of workout other than 12 ounce curls for this decedent french fry compilation.

Now, onto the pulled and shredded short ribs.  It's like meat paradise.  It's melt in your mouth big shreds of MEAT!!!  The meat plays well off of the cheese. The meat is not stringy at all,  and just falls a part.  You can tell it's slow cooked for a  verrrrryyyyy long time. It's not too salty, and not bland at all. I don't even need to add salt,  which I usually do,  which usually drives bub mad.  He eats very little salt.

Lastly,  the whole thing is topped off with a creamy american cheese sauce. The menu says just american cheese, but a skilled cheese investigator can tell this is actually a cheese sauce of some sort. The cheese sauce is mild,  so it does not over power the meat or the fries.  They all kind of play nicely off of each other.  Not a single thing over powers the other.  

When you eat this,  you get a taste of the french fries,  the meat,  and the cheese.  They all combine so nicely,  but you do not miss any of the flavors.   I recommend using a fork, and asking for extra napkins!  

So, walk, run, or jog to the Pour House in Westmont, NJ.  This appetizer is calorie loaded, so I suggest some type of movement to get your ass into the seat and onto a good cold beer and hot fries!  You will not be disappointed.  And if you are,  it's because your a soulless wretch who complains too much.  That is not my problem.