What I'm up to
  • Oxo Good Grips Small Wooden Spoon
    Oxo Good Grips Small Wooden Spoon

    everyone needs these, many of them.

  • Mauviel Cuprinox Style 8-inch Round Frying Pan
    Mauviel Cuprinox Style 8-inch Round Frying Pan

    Scarily, I can say I have enough copper. Not many people can utter those words.

  • Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 5-1/2-Quart Round French Oven, Red
    Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 5-1/2-Quart Round French Oven, Red
    Le Creuset

    The same thing could be said for Le Creuset, but still. Great for braising and soup making.

  • The Essential New York Times Cookbook: Classic Recipes for a New Century
    The Essential New York Times Cookbook: Classic Recipes for a New Century
    by Amanda Hesser
  • Nordic Ware Bakers Half Sheet, 13 X 18 X 1
    Nordic Ware Bakers Half Sheet, 13 X 18 X 1
    Nordic Ware

    What did I do before I started using this half sheet? Cry.

flora and flying. Get yours at bighugelabs.com


Sorrel Sauce for Salmon- to ring in a New Year

Sorrel sauce, Banamak Recipes for New Year

I really meant to update this blog and post a million recipes (mostly cookies, sorry), but life and work got the best of me. I’m happy to say that I’m ready to share again. I was motivated by the invitation to contribute to a round up of NoRuz recipes (see link at the bottom of this post) by a great group of Persian Food bloggers. I hope you get a chance to read and comment on them all this week.

Last year, my mom and I were featured in an article on Persian New Year traditions in Edible Seattle.  We talked about some of our family food traditions and rituals. I was honored to have my kuku recipe included in the print edition.  The on-line edition does not seem to have the recipe available, but you can find it here.

Much like American Thanksgiving, the NoRuz menu is set in tradition. Fish, sabzi polo and kuku are essential components; the other items can change from year to year. For the fish course, many Iranians serve a smoked Lake Michigan whitefish or another firm fleshed white fish.  Growing up in Seattle in the 70s and 80s, smoked whitefish was hard to find. My mom served cod, snapper or sole filets as our fish course. Later, she served whole butterflied salmon as our family and circle of friends grew.  These days whitefish filets are easily found at Persian stores or Costco(!) in the weeks running up to New Year. 

I still serve salmon to my guests, usually a white king if we can get it. I’ve moved away from my old standby of baking the salmon with white wine, herbs and onions to making a simple green sorrel sauce that pairs beautifully with the salmon and the rest of the menu as well.


Garden sorrel, just starting to go gang busters, just like zuchinni

Sorrel is an amazing herb to have on hand.  I highly recommend coming over here and digging some up (kidding!) or buying a plant to have at home. It grows like a weed and tolerates being neglected. As for the taste, I love the way it peps up green salads and makes a lovely spring soup.

Sorrel sauce with salmon is a classic dish and there are a million recipes out there you can use.  I don’t use one in particular, but I do like to extend and temper the sharp and citrusy taste of the sorrel with a little spinach and peppery watercress, so that is my twist on the classics.


Holy Trinity - Left to Right - sorrel, watercress, baby spinach

Sorrel sauce for our New Year’s Salmon –serves 4 to 6

Notes: The New Year meal should come together pretty fast if you are an organized cook. The sauce will be much better if it is made at the last minute. I recommend setting up your mise with everything measured, minced, chiffonaded and ready to go before your guests arrive.  You can save a little more time by sautéing the shallots before hand and just warming them up before you start adding the greens.  If you can get your sous-chef to deal with getting guests to the table and all the tahdig out of the pot before you are done making the sauce, high five to both of you.

If you have picky eaters, I would serve the sauce on the side so they can try it first.  I also recommend adding the liquid to achieve your desired consistency. Some folks like to spoon the sauce and have it not slide off the filets, and others like a more liquid presentation.  You can puree the sauce, but really, you want to be sitting with your guests as soon as possible, so skip it.

1 bunch of sorrel, washed, dried and stems removed
½ bunch of watercress, washed, dried and stems removed
3 oz or ½ package of baby spinach, washed and dried
1 shallot, minced
3 T. unsalted butter
4-6 T heavy cream, half and half or crème fraiche
Salt and pepper to taste

Chiffonade (Chow's video link) sorrel, watercress and spinach, but keep them separate as they’ll be added individually. Set aside until needed.

Melt butter in a heavy skillet. When melted, add shallots and sauté until transparent.  Lower heat and add spinach, cook until just wilted, then add watercress and cook until it starts wilting. Lastly, add sorrel and cook until it wilts. The sorrel will turn a most unfortunate shade of olive while the spinach and watercress still look green, but it should taste pretty awesome. 

Remove the skillet from heat and stir in cream, half and half or crème fraiche slowly to reduce the chance of curdling and the sauce is at your desired consistency.  Season to taste.

Serve at once either on the side or spoon over fish filets.










Rentering - Back to school, back to reality


Swim call. #sundayswim #seattle #summer

Man, summer was short.


There is a still a ton of great stuff to be picked and created out there.

Home. Grown.  We have a bumper crop of yellow peaches this year. #eatlocal #cityfruit #citygardening #seattle

You are just going to have to be patient.


Not missing in action - Really.




I have two great recipes to post in the upcoming  week - a great salad and a lovely peach tart.

Until then, stay cool friends.




Banana Coconut and Mango Muffins - Bananas at Anna's


 My friend Anna of Snacking in the Kitchen invited some friends over to her house to show off some banana recipes. We could showcase our own creations or use existing recipes, as long as bananas were featured.  Dole provided us with some banana goodies (a banana protector), recipes and marketing campaign materials on bananas as the new power bar.  As a seasoned and slow marathon/half marathon wogger, I agree.  At the end of a race, I have been known to utter "Screw the medal, give me my banana".  It is true. Bananas are great food for recovery, but I'm not sure I would carry one for 13 miles.

Bananas at Anna's

Other dishes included - banana nutella pie, cheese!, Banana cakes with brown sugar glaze, banana chicken salad, chocolate chip banana bread and curried bananas (not pictured).

While Dole provided some promotional goodies, we were responsible for buying our own bananas. Oh what to make? I knew that I wanted to bake something that would serve as a breakfast food, not too sweet and would be portable enough for TH to take to work in the morning.


I decided to make muffins. Muffins that would remind me of great trips of the past to Hawaii.  I immediately though of the Maloa'a Fruit Stand on Kauai, where you can get all sorts of great fruit smoothies and baked goods on the way to the taro fields of Hanalei.  Coconut would definitely be a flavor component. I polled my friends who agreed that shredded coconut would be too sweet, but coconut milk would impart a good flavor, so that is what I tried. It turned out to be pretty tasty with just the coconut taste coming from the oil and milk.

With further aplomb, here is my creation.  Thank you Anna for including me in your Banana Challenge!

Banana Coconut Mango Muffins
Makes 18 regular sized muffins or 12 large muffins

Note: I used frozen mango chunks and diced them while they were still frozen.  This makes it much easier and neater.  Here is a great video from allrecipes.com that will show you how to slice, chop and dice a fresh mango if you are that way inclined.

2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour (I used 2 cups all purpose and 1/2 cup whole wheat)
1 cup mashed ripe banana (two large bananas)
1 cup diced mango
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, blended
1/2 cup coconut milk (I used TJ's coconut milk beverage, but you could use
light coconut milk)
1/4 fluid cup coconut oil, melted and cooled
1 t vanilla extract
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1/2 t salt

Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter muffin pan or use paper muffin liners in the pan for easier cleanup.

In a large bowl, blend together dry ingredients until well mixed.  In a separate bowl, combine eggs, sugar,vanilla, banana, coconut milk and oil.

Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, add diced mango and mix until combined, being sure to use spatula to scrape the bottom of the bowl to get all dry ingredients incorporated. Do not overmix batter.

With a spoon, drop batter into muffin tins or liners, fill to only 2/3 full.

Bake for 15-18 minutes or  until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool on rack and serve either warm or cool.

Store leftover muffins in a zip lock bag for up to 3 days.


Glace Cherries - Don't bother (the last cherry post, I promise)

Two weeks of glacée and bollocks #cherrygram


I spent the last 14 days in a futile attempt to glace cherries so that I would have FANCY cherries for some occasion that I would make up, just to use the cherries.

I tried it with frozen pie cherries. They lack the lovely translucent quality as seen in a few earlier post.

At least I have my refrigerator back and some really awesome sour cherry syrup to go on top of the faloodeh that I will eventually share with you.