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Bloggers and their boys

I met up with Lee from In My Tummy the other night so that we could enjoy a few beers together and let our husbands get to know each other too. They both like really good beer, apparently, and that’s as good a reason as any to go drink some!

Aren’t they cute?

Some of these pictures are yoinked from her own account of the evening, check it out!

Anyway, on to the booze! We met at The Brick Store, which was crazy busy even for a Monday night.

I started off with an Allagash Curieux, an interesting beer that is aged in bourbon barrels, it actually retains a slight hint of bourbon flavor! I didn’t love it, there was something cloudy and waxy about it, still enjoyable though. Jeff had one of his usuals, Chimay Blue, which I love as well.

We we super hongry. I got a turkey sandwich with smashed avocado and a salad with basil dressing.

Jeff had the roast beef sandwich with more spicy mustard than is right for any one person!

I was eyeing Lee’s hummus plate.

After we were sufficiently fed we could move on to round two. I got the St. Bernardus Abt. 12 and Jeff switched to scotch.

There was a slight mix-up with our order and we ended up getting a free round in apology. It was super-nice of them to do that, but man we did not need those extra beers!

We had a great time talking about all kinds of stuff. A lot about blogging, of course, but much much more too.

It was a fun double date. I am always reminded that I should do this kind of stuff more often.

Thanks guys for a fun night!

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Miso-glazed salmon

You have got to know by now just how much I love miso, right?

This recipe is my absolute favorite way to enjoy miso, and one that I make about twice a month as it is so quick to put together and so richly delicious.

I start with a fillet of salmon placed on a baking sheet that has been lined with aluminum foil.

Next, I make the glaze. All you need are these two, miso and mirin…

Any miso is fine, I realize you may only be able to get your hands on shiro miso (aka: white or mellow miso.) I use this “red” variety because I’ve tried making the recipe with both and found this one to be less salty. As for mirin, if you can’t find it you can use either maple syrup or honey and a few drops of water to thin it out. I’ve tried it using both of those ingredients and it was still awesome.

So, put a dollop of miso in a bowl and add about a tablespoon or so of mirin.

I then microwave this for ten seconds, stir, then another 10 seconds and stir again. It’ll look about like this, don’t worry if yours is thicker or thinner than mine. It’ll be great, I promise.

Just pour it over the salmon and spread evenly over the surface and down the sides.

This gets baked at 400 degrees for exactly 20 minutes.

While that was baking, I got the rest of the meal ready. I had some sushi rice going in the rice cooker already so I just had to make something to go with it. I decided to smash up an avocado with seaweed flake, salt and toasted sesame.

And I even had time to have a little fun with my ring molds that I haven’t touched in forever. I used them to mold the rice into pretty little discs.

 

Out came the salmon. Don’t worry about the burned edges, it’s just because there is sugar in the mirin, the fish itself is fine. This is why you needed the foil.

And here it is, alongside the rice topped with mashed avocado and sliced scallions.

Seriously, one of my very favorite dinners.

And no, you don’t need to mold the rice into pretty shapes. I would have just plopped it on the plate too if I wasn’t planning on photographing it!

Miso-glazed salmon

Perfectly baked salmon topped with a glaze of salty miso and sweet mirin.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 skin-on salmon fillet
  • approx. 2 tbsp. red miso paste
  • approx. 2 tbsp. mirin

Cooking Directions

  1. Lay salmon fillet on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, remove any pin bones.
  2. In a small bowl, combine miso and mirin.
  3. Microwave miso and mirin for 20 seconds then stir to combine.
  4. Pour mixture over salmon and spread evenly with a butter knife.
  5. Bake salmon at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes or until done.
  6. Serve with rice, smashed avocado, and scallions if desired.

Hope you try it, I’m really proud of this one!

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Quick vegetable fried rice

This was so yummy and so easy that we had it two nights in a row!

I started by making 2 cups of rice and set it to keep warm.

I got all my ingredients ready to go. You need:

  • sesame oil
  • soy sauce
  • rice vinegar
  • frozen vegetables of your choosing
  • 2 or more eggs, beaten

I used a wok but you can do this in a large flat pan too. Just add some sesame oil and vegetables to the pan and get it hot, medium-high heat should do it. I used half a bag of “Japanese Mix” which included broccoli, mushrooms, red bell pepper, and some kind of string bean. I actually added about a half of a fresh red bell pepper in too because this mix was really skimpy on it, but you don’t have to add anything.

Wait until the vegetables have thawed and are starting to sizzle before adding the rice, you may want to add a bit more oil too.

Toss everything every 30 seconds or so for several minutes or until the rice is smelling slightly toasty and you can see either sear marks on the vegetables, slight browning on the rice, or both.

Pour over about 3 tbsp. of rice vinegar and toss. ¬†Swirl over a generous amount of soy sauce (probably almost a 1/4 cup) and toss until distributed. Now it’s starting to look like fried rice!

Turn the heat down to medium and wait a minute for the pan to cool down. Make a well in the center of the pan and pour in the beaten eggs.

Stir the eggs as they start to scramble. Use cutting and folding motions to break apart the egg and distribute it throughout the rice. When it’s cooked through, serve it up!

We topped ours with noritamago furikake (seaweed and dried egg seasoning) and super-hot sriracha. It really doesn’t need anything though.

This dish comes together in less than 20 minutes and doesn’t make a bunch of dirty dishes. It’s so much lighter than the stuff you get in a take-out box or thrown at you in a hibachi restaurant, as you can control the amount of oil and soy sauce.

This fresh-tasting and filling dish has quickly become one of my go-to meals when I don’t have a lot of time to make something. You could absolutely chop fresh vegetables and even saute a little onion in too, but the real magic here is that this dish allows you to get something healthy and filling in you without all the work, and I’m going to keep taking the shortcut because it makes my life easier.

And we have enough left over to have it again for lunch, yay!

Quick vegetable fried rice

Simple customizable fried rice recipe, never greasy because you control the oil content.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2 to 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked shortgrain rice
  • half a bag of frozen vegetable mix of choice
  • 2-3 eggs
  • 2-3 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • up to a 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • sesame oil for frying

Cooking Directions

  1. Saute frozen vegetables in a hot wok with sesame oil until starting to brown.
  2. Add cooked rice to the center and allow to toast slightly, then mix in.
  3. Add rice vinegar and soy sauce, mix evenly.
  4. Push rice to the outside of the pan and fry the eggs in the center, scramble as they set and mix to incorporate.
  5. Serve topped with sliced scallions, toasted sesame seeds, seaweed flake, or sriracha if desired.