Salmon with Dill Sauce (and Kitchen Phobias)

I am normally pretty brave in the kitchen.  After all, if it doesn’t work, it’s not like I have to eat it.  I still might try to choke some of it down, but I always have the option of a good ol’ PB&J if it is just that bad (like the Blueberry Chicken Casserole that I made before I started this blog…uggghhh).

One food that I have remained afraid of is fish.  Part of the problem is that I don’t like many different types of fish (salmon and white fish are it pretty much).  Then, even if it is a Lauren-approved fish, if it is prepared with something that I don’t think should go with fish (cheese, tomatoes, olives, other fish stuffing), I won’t eat that either.  As you can see, I am fussy enough when someone else is making me the fish.

When I am trying to prepare it, I have the third hurdle as well.  Where do I buy it?  What cut do I get?  Will there be all of those little bones?  Is it fresh?  Will my apartment smell like fish for days?

I finally decided (after 3 years of cooking for myself and not making any fish) to face my fear and just go for it.  I saw Claire Robinson make her recipe for Crispy Skin Salmon on the Food Network and thought I would go with that concept.  How can you really mess up broiled salmon?

HINT: When broiling salmon, make sure it doesn’t stick to your oven rack.  It can be messy afterward 😦

I bought a wild salmon filet at the grocery store and went to town!  I made a few changes (as you can see in my recipe).  I replaced tarragon with dill because I couldn’t find tarragon anywhere.  My salmon is also not really “Crispy Skin” because mine had no skin on it when I bought it.  Just think of it as crispy instead!  The sauce is creamy and spicy, a perfect accompaniment to all sorts of dishes.  I bet it would be fabulous with chicken or pork too.  Best of all, because that had such a strong flavor, it drowned out any semblance of a fish smell!

Overall, I feel pretty wonderful that I found a way to make fish.  What are your favorite ways to prepare fish?  What are your biggest kitchen fears?  The world wants to know.

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The Starks Were Right. Winter is Coming!

For those of you who did not catch the reference, the Stark family of The Song of Fire and Ice series (see my post here) live in the far North and their family motto is “Winter is Coming.”  While we can take that literally and assume that with a general change of seasons, Winter is inevitable, we can also take it to mean “Life may seem good, but it won’t last.”

I, for today, am going to create a third interpretation of this phrase, meaning


Over the past 24 hours, we have received a minimum of 8″ of snow and I couldn’t be happier.  Not only does snow open up a world of fun and frosty things to do, but it also gives me a SNOW DAY to do them.  That was so considerate of Mother Nature.  Thank you darling.

I am working on building a list of fun wintry adventures and tasks so that the next time Winter decides to stop by and say “Hello,” I don’t spend the first part of that visit trying to sort through all of the potential epic ways to spend a snow day.  Yes, snow. day.  Did I mention I had one?  Be jealous.

Here is my list so far.  Add your own ideas in the comments!

Snow Day List of Magic and Wonder

    • Take a moment and feel badly for all of the birds that came back up North early because they thought it must be Spring, with with the high temperature, thunderstorms, and budding flowers.
    • Make some soup or other warming, happy food.  I had grand plans involving turkey chile, but then I tried to leave my garage.  I love seeing a 3 foot wall of snow plowed up in my driveway.  My car is strong, but not that strong.  I decided to wait for someone to come alone to take care of that for me and I had some stuff my my pantry instead.  Not nearly as exciting as this, this, or this.  At this point, I am completely able to leave my garage and get some groceries, but that motivation has somehow vanished.  Next time, I will get food before the storm hits.  Ahhh life lessons.
    • Plan a trip to somewhere nice and warm!  Nothing makes you feel toastier than sitting inside under a blanket as the snow sleepily falls outside your window.  Even if you don’t actually book anything, you can dream, right?! Imagine those trips to Brazil or the South of France.  Thinking about it will cost you nothing, but bring you lots of happiness.  Try it!  Picture yourself here:

Don’t you feel so much better now?

    • Hot beverages people.  Coffee, tea, hot cocoa, hot apple cider, anything that contains the word “mulled.”  These will make your day cozy, sugar- and caffeine-filled, in wonderful.  This is even better if accompanied by a cookie.
    • A cookie warm from the oven.  Yes please!  I am better most of you have the baking supplies in your pantry to make this, or this, or this, in the comfort of your own home.

    • Snowpeople– One day, you might get lucky, find a magic hat, and meet Frosty.  You never know.  Keep living the dream.
    • Read a book!  For some crazy reason, this was not in my original list.  Fortunately, Sheila and Danielle reminded me 🙂   I spent some of my time working on one of the installments of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.  Five books down, only about thirty to go!  They are hil-air-eeee-ous.
    • Catch up on your work.  This is what I spent most of the day doing.  Lame, right?  Except I feel so much better and am breathing sighs of relief instead of sighs of exhaustion or stress.  I’m betting it was worth it then 🙂
    • Update Your Blog:  Because we are cool like that, yo.

What would you add to my Snow Day List of Magic and Wonder? I will add your suggestions in as I see them!