Tuesday, May 15, 2012

~Grilled Salmon with Avocado Salsa~

Holy cow was this good salmon!! How can anything go wrong with avocado?  I have just been in love with salmon lately; I can't get enough of it.  This is the perfect summer dinner in my opinion--fresh cilantro, avocado, red onion (with some other stuff) and fresh salmon.  I made this with white rice and baked broccoli.  I do also love summer grilling--who doesn't?  Summer is my absolute favorite season--the days stay light longer, the weather is warmer, the ocean water is also warmer, and grilling seems to happen several times a week.  My favorite smell of summer is the ocean air and Coppertone sun screen--there is no greater smell than that!

What you don't want to do is overcook the salmon--because then it's dry.  Dry salmon=no good.  What you do want to do is use lots and lots of avocado and cilantro :-)  This dish takes a total of maybe 20 minutes to make.  Who doesn't have time for that on a warm summer night?

Oil and season the salmon (I bought a pound fresh at Stater Bros....I never buy pre-packaged frozen salmon).  That's part of the secret to always having moist salmon.  Then grill those babies up!
Next, make the avocado salsa--chop up the veggies and slice the avocado.  I used one avocado for two people, which is a lot of avocado.  But seriously, I love it...There are 7 grams of protein in one avocado--yay for good fat!

Serves 4

You'll Need:

2 lbs. salmon, cut into 4 pieces
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground coriander (I didn't put this in)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. paprika powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. black pepper
Avocado Salsa:
1 avocado (or more!) sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
3 mild hot peppers, seeded deveined, diced
Juice from 2 limes
3 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. finely chopped cilantro
Salt to taste

Get Busy:

Mix all the ingredients together for the salmon seasoning.  Rub the salmon fillets with the olive oil, then the seasoning mixture, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.  While the grill is getting hot, make the salsa and chill in a bowl until the salmon is ready.  Grill the salmon; serve topped with avocado salsa.  This dish is also really good with tostones (which I will post soon!).  Enjoy!

Friday, May 11, 2012

~Pecan-Crusted Chicken Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing~

Oh, yum!  OOoooo how I love salads lately!  I had salad almost every day for lunch this week.  There is something incredibly refreshing about a salad--and I can't have a salad without a crunch!  This salad definitely has enough different textures to please your taste buds and tongue.

Mix together the chopped pecans, crackers, salt and cayenne.

Fry the coated chicken in light oil, enough to cover the pan and then some.  The chicken should be a good golden brown, and make sure the chicken is cooked all the way through.  A good idea is to flatten your chicken breast before cooking.

Once the chicken is cooked completely, chop into long thinner pieces.

...And voila! After you chop your lettuce and add some goodies, you have a delicious salad with lots of crunch and wonderful flavors.

Serves 3-4

You'll Need:
1 recipe pecan crusted chicken
1 recipe honey mustard dressing
8 c. romaine lettuce, sliced
1 apple or pear, thinly sliced
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
dried craisins

Mix lettuce with celery and place in serving bowl.  Make a circle with apple slices and place chicken on top.  Spring some craisins and drizzle the dressing over all.

4 chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness (1/2 inch)
1/2 c. pecans
12 saltine crackers
1/4 tsp. salt
dash pepper
pinch cayenne

1/3 c. milk
2 eggs

Combine pecans, crackers, salt, pepper and cayenne in a food processor or blender and blend until finely ground.  With a shallow plate, put the pecan mixture on one plate.  In a bowl, combine milk and eggs and mix well with a fork.  Heat a skillet over medium high heat with about 1/2 inch oil for frying.  Dip chicken in egg mixture, then coat with pecan mixture, pressing pecans into chicken.  Fry coated chicken in hot oil, flipping sides until cooked through. (Or you can bake the chicken in the oven at 350 for 30 minutes for a healthier alternative).

Honey Mustard Dressing:
1/2 c. honey
1/4 dijon mustard
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
2 Tbs. mayonnaise

Chop garlic in food processor.  Add the rest of the ingredients and chill until served.  Enjoy!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Weekend with the Ladies

Well I got to have a really fun getaway with most of the girls in my family--excluding all kiddos minus Little Dirk (Ashley's).  We spent the weekend in Palm Springs and it was about 95 degrees--perfect layout weather, if you ask me!  Aunt Jayne met up with us for a little bit and surprised us with fresh chocolate chip cookies--ahh so delicious.  Funny too, because we had just been talking about how much we needed something sweet.  Ohh Aunt Jayne you know us Hoovers :-)

It was nice to get away from the guys and kids (and Dirk was quiet so we hardly knew he was there).  We got some great sun and swam in the heated pool.

Supermom treated us to pedicures which felt sooo good.

The ladies at the pool.  The only downfall of this weekend was that I got pretty sick.  On Saturday I went to urgent care, and the doctor said I had an ear infection in both ears and a major sore throat--ugh. (I could have told him that...just give me the drugs man and no one will get hurt).  I am still sick but feeling better...I thought only kids got ear infections...? Weird.  If you're going to be sick however, the best place is in the sun and with mama there to rub your back :-)

For dinner one night, we went to a delicious restaurant called Jackalope Ranch.  Our food was pretty awesome (and so were the misters that kept us a little cooler!).
Me and my beautiful sis-in-law, Kelli.  One of the prettiest pregnant girls I know!  It was nice to have a weekend away...and then back to the usual grind.  The whole fambam is going boating for Memorial Day weekend.  I seriously can't wait!