Saturday, August 28, 2010

Grilled Swordfish with Pesto & Rice

I have this friend named Hannah. She is energetic, funny, wicked smart, and totally stylish. She's also 12 and she thinks I am pretty darn cool. It makes me feel awesome to be loved by this sweet girl and one of the things that she loves best in the world, other than me, is fish...believe it or not! She wants to try every new kind of seafood that she can find and she's always up for a food adventure. One day, while shopping at Trader Joe's, Hannah "talked me into" buying swordfish so that I could cook for her and feed her. I had NO IDEA how to cook swordfish but I'm always up for a cooking adventure (especially when it means an extra happy kiddo), so off I went to the land of fish recipes to figure out what to do with it. The answer was...grill it! This afternoon we whipped up a tasty lunch. Here's what we ate:

Grilled Swordfish with Pesto & Rice

For the rice:
Just make some rice...nothing fancy :)

For the pesto:
1 box of basil from TJ's
1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
1/4 pine nuts (I also like walnuts so you can substitute!)
4 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and smashed
~1/2 c. olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Put basil, cheese, nuts and garlic into a food processor. With processor running, drizzle in olive oil until the sauce has a good texture, less for a thicker sauce...more for a thinner sauce. Taste your pesto. Add salt & pepper or more cheese or more garlic...whatever you like!

For the fish:
2-4 one inch thick swordfish steaks (they come in two packs in the freezer section at TJ's)
olive oil
salt & pepper

Heat the grill. Rub the fish with oil & season with salt and pepper. Once the grill is hot, throw the fish on there. Let it cook 5 minutes on each side. Bring it inside and eat!

I plated this trio as follows: rice on the plate, fish on top of rice, spoonfuls of pesto running over rice & fish.

The fish was delicious and I am totally converted to swordfish! Even the crispy skin was good!!! And...Miss Hannah loved it! I got the full mouth nod with a goofy smile!!! Oh how I love happy kids!!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

As Requested....Stuffed Zucchini

So I have a fabulous garden this year! I have already written a couple of posts about it, so you all know what I'm talking about! Between my landlady and myself we check on the garden every other day to pick what is ripe and make sure that we don't end up with the world's largest squash. Well...somehow we missed a zucchini...for a long time and ended up with a 16 inch long boat! What does one do with a 16 in long zucchini? Stuff it! I used an online recipe for rice stuffing and added some of my own flavors to feel free to be creative! I was thinking of adding some chevre to it next time! Here's how I made some tasty stuffed squash!

Stuffed Zucchini

1- 16 inch long zucchini (or you could do several regular size zucchini), cut in half with seeds removed

4 c. cooked brown rice
4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 c. sun-dried tomatoes, dry packed, julienne style
1- 15oz. can mushrooms with juice (do not drain!)
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 bay leaf
salt & pepper to taste

Cook your bacon. Remove the bacon to drain and cook onions in the bacon fat until translucent. Add the fresh herbs and bay leaf and stir for 1 minute. Turn off the heat. Add the entire can of mushrooms (I used the sliced ones), sun-dried tomatoes and crumbled bacon. Stir.
In a large bowl, combine the rice and bacon mixture. Salt and pepper to taste. Make sure the rice is moist! Add water or chicken broth if it's too dry.
Heat the oven to 350 or 375 depending on the size of your squash. Place the zucchini on a foil covered baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt & pepper and a little bit of olive oil. Spoon the stuffing into the hollow of the squash until a nice mound forms. Cover with foil and bake for 20min. Remove foil and continue baking until squash is soft, 20-30min more.

Serves 6-8

If you are in need of zucchini and live in the Bay Area...give me a call!!!!