Why this blog??

Why this blog?? I often find myself stressing over what to make for my family for dinner. We live a busy life and some meals need time to prep, cook and let's not forget shopping for everything you need. I love cookbooks and websites, but there are so many recipe's at times it is overwhelming. The recipe's I will be posting are things I actually made. I will tell you if they are easy or more time consuming. I will also tell you if they are good. Most of these are recipe's I have made for years and continue to make because they are easy or quick and my family loves them and i know yours will too! I will also try to at least once in a whlie try a new recipe I've found on line or in a book and honestly rate it. I always encourage others to send me their favorite recipe's as well! I am a mom... not a chef. But I am a mom who enjoys cooking for her family and making a somewhat healthy meal (some days more healthy than others:) ) In each recipe I will share how I recommend serving it, any substitutions I can think of that are also good, or ways to prepare ahead of time to make the cooking part seem quicker! I am not a photographer, as you can see... most of these pictures are taken from my phone camera, so may not be the best! I love to hear from others who have made these recipes and what they have done to change the recipe... please post comments! Thank you! To "like" me on facebook, go to this link... It's What's Cookin

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Miso Cod with Spicy Cucumbers

This recipe is again out of the "Cook This, Not That!" book by David Zinczenko and Matt Goulding.  Here is the recipe straight from the book... "This dish is slightly more elegant (and considerably more nutritious) than the fishy fare you'll encounter at most chain restaurants, but it's just as easy to prepare. The salty-sweetness of the miso marinade pairs perfectly with the quick-pickled cucumbers for a dish that takes no more than 20 mins of actual cooking time, yet will elevate you to the status of the Iron Chef in the eyes of those you serve it to."

*1 cup white miso paste (found in certain stores in the refrigerated section)
*1/2 cup mirin (found in Asian isle- It's a sweet cooking rice wine)
*2 T Brown Sugar
*4 cod fillets (6 oz each) (you can also use sea bass, swordfish, or halibut)
*1 lg English cucumber, seeded and sliced into half moons
*1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
*1 T salt
*1 T sugar
*2 tsp red pepper flakes

1. Combine miso, mirin and brown sugar in bowl. Stir thoroughly to combine. Pour marinade over fish and marinate in fridge for up to 12 hours. (I did it for about 8)

2. Mix cucumber, vinegar, salt, sugar, and pepper flakes in a bowl. Allow cucumbers to picke for at least 30 mins and up to 24 hours in fridge (I did 3 hours)

3. Preheat the broiler. Remove the cod from marinade and place on baking sheet. St baking sheet 6 inches below broiler and cook 8-10 mins, until fish is deeply caramelized and flakes with gentle pressure. Serve the cod with the cucumber.

**I also served this over sticky white rice and a side of steamed broccoli that I seasoned with lemon pepper and a squeeze of lemon. Tasty and healthy.  (One helping of the fish and cucumber is 260 calories, 1 g fat) I really liked it and so did my husband and daughter, although they wouldn't eat the cucumbers. The fish was salty, but also sweet and the combination between that and the spicy cucumbers was awesome!

The book compares this meal to P.F. Chang's Oolong Marinated Sea Bass. By making this dish, you save 322 calories and $17.73!

The Mirin and Miso I used for fish and the Rice vinegar for cucumbers...
Marinating fish
Marinating Cucumbers

This was served over rice with the side of steamed broccoli and some left over chayote squash from the night before.

I love the how caramelized the fish gets!

One of my favorite cookbooks. Full of great tips and recipes!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Tortilla Crusted Chipotle and Lime Tilapia

My new obsession are these Tilapia filet's found at Costco as well as many grocery stores... They have all different flavors, but this one is my favorite and make for a healthy meal. The brand is High Liner.

So even though this is not a totally home cooked meal, I had to share it because our family likes these so much... even my kids! I usually just bake as directed on package (7-10 mins at 375) and serve with rice, lots of lime slices (or lemon) and usually some type of veggie or fruit. I love that they are a little less than 4 oz each too... perfect size. These are also good as a fish sandwich or sliced up and served on top of a salad!

Here I served over Minute rice... I like to squeeze LOTS of lime over both the fish AND the rice! 

Check out their products and find out where you can get them near you!