Seared Scallops with Lemon Glaze

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Hi everyone. As you know I have been cooking a lot with sous vide immersion cooker. Things that were normally harder to cook have all of a sudden become a whole lot easier (this is not a plug for one I swear). One of those things that I have generally had a more challenging time with before was pan searing scallops. They either didn’t sear well or came out over cooked. But, with the sous vide, it was pretty simple to sear and keep them well cooked. I made a lemon glaze to go with it and paired it with sautéed kale and crispy sweet potatoes for a perfectly easy and healthy meal.

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Ingredients

  • large scallops
  • 2 large lemons
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Red Chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 green onion, separating green and white part
  • 4 tbsp dry wine
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 tsp honey

Directions

  • Heat water bath to 122ºF
  • Wash and dry scallops
  • Salt and pepper to taste and place them in the vacuum bag (~1lb/bag)
  • Place 2 lemon slices in the bag and seal
  • Place in water bath for 30 minutes
  • At this time, prepare the sauce by heating butter in a saucepan
  • Add the chopped white part of the green onion and chili flakes
  • remove the scallion and in another bowl combine orange juice and juice of a lemon to get 2/3 cup of liquid
  • When the scallops are done cooking, remove them from the bag and pat dry them
  • Sear in skillet over high heat with butter residue from sauce
  • remove the scallops and deglaze with dry wine
  • Add the orange and lemon juice mixture and zest of 1 lemon
  • stir in green onion and bring to a boil until glaze like consistency
  • Add honey if too sour/tart for your liking
  • Pour the sauce over the scallops and enjoy (or I placed the scallops on top of the sauce)

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Poached Cod

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So I always hear that poaching fish is a good and easy way to cook it (ok not always hear, maybe like a few times). Of course when I looked it up, it didn’t seem that hard, and all in all I’d say that it isn’t. However, if I am going to be honest, while it looks pretty in the broth and all the veggies, I probably prefer to pan sear my fish and eat it slightly crispy.  Not everything we make can always be freaking awesome you know? sometimes you strike out, and this doesn’t even qualify as striking out. There was a lot of good flavor in the broth, but I just felt that the fish was kind of bland and lacking. Maybe if I get venturous again I will give this one another shot in the future, but for now, here it is. If you change it up and it comes out tasting great, please let me know what you did differently. I would like hear!

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Ingredients:

  • 6 cups water
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • potatoes, sliced
  • onions/shallots, sliced
  • carrot, sliced
  • 1/2 lemon sliced
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 cod filets
  • 2 bay leaves
  • parsley and/or cilantro

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Directions

  • Combine all ingredients other than the cod in a pot and bring to a boil on high heat
  • Reduce to a simmer on low heat
  • When liquid is lightly simmering, add cod filets, making sure to completely cover them in liquid
  • Poach until cod is opaque and flaky (~7min?)
  • Serve….so simple right?

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Sous Vide Pork Rack

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As you know I got a sous vide as a gift, and I have been trying my hardest to use it as often as I can. Now I know it can be time consuming, but man does stuff come out good. Gone are the days of roasting things in the oven or frying things in a pan and having it dry out. Sous Vide reminds me of those “Set it and Forget it” commercials from back in the day. So I decided to sous vide a 4 bone pork rack (originally came in a rack of 8 bones, but I cut it in half, because who the heck is going to eat 8…). I made this before by roasting in the oven and it came out great, but this one came out better in my opinion. Also this recipe is not from anywhere, or based on anything, but just me experimenting, so feel free to mess around obviously. But you can try both and let me know!

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Ingredients

  • Rack of pork
  • Kosher Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 tbsp of dried oregano, thyme, rosemary
  • Olive oil

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Directions

  • Set sous vide water bath to 143º F (or oven to 350º)
  • Rinse and dry pork rack
  • Salt and pepper the pork, and add herbs as well
  • Place the pork rack into the bag, add some olive oil, and seal (alternatively place in roasting pan and drizzle oil)
  • Place in water bath for 90 minutes (or oven for 1hour)
  • Remove from water bath, pat dry, and sear in skillet over high heat for ~2-3 minutes a side (may need a little oil in the skillet)
    • if using the oven, skip this step
  • Let the pork rest, cut, serve, and enjoy!

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Citrus Scallops and Quinoa Salad

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As I have been doing this blog (sparingly to be honest), it has made me venture into things that I normally would not eat or attempt. This is especially true in light of the fact that I am trying to eat healthier (venturing into baking isn’t awesome on your body when you live by yourself…). Thus my foray into the magical worlds of quinoa and kale (although there is no kale in this recipe). I bought some quinoa on a whim and decided to try and make it, but man is it boring. So I thought I’d try and spice it up a bit (or in this case, sweeten), by making it into more of a citrus salad. And because I need some kind of protein, I added some seared scallops to go along with it. The result was a really good, light meal that I did not feel guilty about eating. So give it a go and let me know how it turns out for you.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa, cooked to instructions
  • 1 lb large sea scallops, washed and dried
  • 1 grapefruit, cut into slices
  • 2 navel oranges, cut into slices
  • 1 large avocado, cut into cubes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/8 cup honey
  • salt and pepper to taste

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Instructions

  • Cook quinoa to instructions
  • Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper in a small bowl
  • Wash and pat dry the scallops, salt and pepper to taste
  • Sear the scallops in a large pan over med-high heat
  • Mix the quinoa and the dressing, using a fork to combine
  • Add the avocado, grapefruit, and oranges and mix again
  • Add the scallops and in my case sautéed spinach as well
  • Eat and not feel guilty!

Panko Parmesan Crusted Halibut

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So Jenn was over one weekend and I decided to cook for her (as is kind of the point of this blog). She obviously gets the better end of this deal now that I think about it. She is always wanting to eat healthier and encouraging me to do the same. I oblige as much as I can, but c’mon, you can’t not eat ribs, burgers, fries, steak, pizza, dessert, etc if they’re in front of you. And let’s be honest, I make it a point to put them in front of me. So, I had a few vegetables in my fridge and in order to be healthy, I decided to make fish. But me being me and wanting to make it nice and do this “chivalrous” thing for the gf, I went out and got halibut (Costco really does have good deals). I basically had everything else in my pantry, so it worked out great. I loosely followed a recipe by For the Love of Cooking. All in all, it turned out pretty dang good, crispy and flaky, the way it was supposed to be. Try it out and let me know what you think!

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Ingredients:

  • halibut filets, no skin
  • 1/2-3/4 cup panko crumbs
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp parsley, finely chopped (or dried I suppose)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • salt and pepper
  • lemon juice (maybe 1/2 a medium lemon)
  • olive oil
  • cooking spray

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees, wash and pat dry the halibut
  • On a plate, combine the panko, parmesan, parsley, and garlic powder
  • Brush both sides of the halibut with olive oil, and squeeze some lemon juice on them
  • Season the halibut with salt and pepper
  • Dip and coat the halibut with the panko mixture
  • Place the halibut on a cooking/baking rack and spray with cooking oil
  • Bake for ~15 minutes
  • Let sit for ~1-2 minutes, garnish with some chopped parsley and enjoy!

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Hawaiian Hoisin Spare Ribs and Pineapple Slaw

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Hey, so it’s been awhile (2 months) since I have last posted, which when I think about it is a really long time. It’s not like I haven’t cooked in 2 months, but I guess nothing worthwhile?  This is a recipe I did awhile back and it turned out really well.  I got the recipe for the ribs here and made both the ribs and the slaw.  They complement each other nicely with the citrus and crispness of the slaw to contrast the sweet and savory of the ribs.  However, for the slaw, the recipe requires a lot of ingredients so I left a lot of things out, which didn’t detract from it at all IMO. Also, this requires a lot of stereotypical Asian ingredients, so thankfully I have most of this at home. But if you don’t, it does require a lot.

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Ingredients:

Ribs:

  • 5 lbs spareribs/baby back ribs
  • 1 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/2 cup dark soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup chicken broth

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Slaw:

  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onion/scallion
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cups diced pineapple
  • 1 cup julienned red pepper
  • red and green cabbage shredded (I used the premade slaw mix from the market)

Directions:

  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the hoisin, soy sauce, honey, vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes
  • Bring to a boil and let simmer until a thick glaze. Remove from heat and let cool
  • @ 275 degrees, place a wire rack in a large baking dish and pour the chicken broth into the bottom of the dish
  • salt and pepper the ribs on both sides, wrap in foil, and place on baking rack
  • Wrap the whole pan in foil and bake for 1-1.5 hours
  • Let the ribs cool for ~15 min and then drizzle/coat the ribs with the glaze
  • Broil for ~5 min making sure not to burn the glaze
  • After removing the ribs and letting stand, drizzle a little more glaze
  • For the slaw, whisk together the honey, vinegar, and soy sauce
  • Slowly add the oils while whisking, and then add the cilantro, peppers, and green onions
  • Add salt and pepper to taste
  • In a bowl, mix the cabbage (or premade mix) and the pineapples
  • Toss in the dressing and refrigerate until ready to serve
  • Enjoy!

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Black Bean Fish

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Hi everyone. So it has been awhile again. I actually didn’t realize how long it has been since I last posted. The other day I made a Chinese style black bean fish that came out pretty good.  It’s a dish I have never made and rarely order when I go out to a restaurant due to the usually awful ratio of onions and bell peppers to fish.  But, when you make it, you get to control things like that so it all works out.  I got the recipe from here.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb sole fish fillet cut into pieces and marinate with 1/2 tablespoon corn starch (I used Swai fillets)
  • 2 tablespoon Lee Kam Kee black bean sauce
  • 1 small onion (quartered)
  • 1 small green bell pepper (cut into small pieces)
  • 2 green onions chopped
  • 5 slices fresh ginger
  • 1/8 tsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 tbsp corn starch mixed with 3 tbsp water

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Instructions:

  • In a wok, add some cooking oil over medium heat
  • Add the onion, bell pepper, and ginger and fry until cooked and aromatic
  • Add the fish, fish sauce, sesame oil and black bean sauce and stir-fry until fish is cooked
  • Add the corn starch to thicken the sauce and stir in the green onions
  • Serve with rice