How This Started and My Hope For This Experiment

My Husband and I are both big fans of Jamie Oliver. For Christmas I bought him Jamie's cookbook "Jamie's 30 Minute Meals: A Revolutionary Approach to Cooking Good Food Fast". As I read the preface of his cookbook I was inspired by his ideas. He felt that he was spending too much time cooking during the busy week and doing too much clean up. So he decided that for the week night meals there needed to be something quick and still healthy and yummy. He and his team did a lot of work and made the "30 Minute Meals". He has explicit directions for step by step getting the meal done in 30 min. He tells you what to do first, second, and third so that you have all dishes going at the same time, instead of making it dish by dish. Since we aren't doing once a month cooking right now I was captured by this idea and dying to start trying. I have been spending way too much time in the kitchen during the week and can't wait to be able to prepare good meals fast. My husband was all for it since he loves to eat great food and has a very particular palette. He will be making some of the meals on weekends when he isn't working because, this is after all, his cookbook :)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Fish Tray-Bake, Jersey Royals, Salsa Verde & Simple Spinach Salad

Fish Tray-Bake, Jersey Royals, Salsa Verde, Simple Spinach Salad, and Cheat's Banoffee Pie p. 168 (the Cheat's Banoffee Pie will be in it's own post later).

This is one stage of the Fish Tray-Bake. Here you have the salmon, tiger prawns, asparagus, lemon, red chili, basil, anchovies in oil, and garlic
I didn't have any doubts that this would all taste good but I was really unprepared for just how well all of the juices would mix together to make the sauce. There is just something about warm lemons that really make a difference.

Now with the tomatoes sliced and added to the top-

And lastly with the pancetta layered on top. It is now ready to be placed in a hot oven under the broiler/grill (middle self) for about 10 min until the fish is cooked threw and the pancetta on top is crispy. Do NOT over cook. The shrimp in here and the fish were perfect. The fish was soft and juicy the pancetta and the asparagus were crispy and the shrimp was juicy and perfect. It is rare I think to get shrimp that isn't over cooked.

Here is a close up so you can see that the lemons are quartered and spread throughout the pan and as they cook they get really juicy and explode with flavor. When you serve it up you can squeeze the lemons on top and it is fantastic. My oldest said that "next time we use lemons we should cook them first because they are so good".

These are the jersey Royals (or new potatoes). These are really yummy but very simple. You just wash them and boil them in salted water with the mint stalks (leaves removed for the Salsa Verde). When the potatoes are cooked through you drain them discarding the mint stalks and dress them with olive oil and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Season with salt and pepper.

Here is the finished product of the fish bake. It was lovely to look at and to taste.

One thing that makes this meal is the combination of using fish, shrimp AND pancetta. It gives it a very extravagant and exotic feeling to combine more than one kind of meat/seafood. This meal was so simple to make but looked and tasted really impressive. I was so surprised at how easy it was and how quick it was to throw together. The second time I made it went even faster.

It made EVERYONE happy. The kids LOVED it and asked for seconds of everything, but they were especially crazy about the shrimp which makes sense since it is their favorite food and these were cooked perfectly :)

It was beautiful plated. One word of advice though- it should all be eaten right away. The salad will wilt easily and potatoes and fish get cold fast but aren't as good on the reheat. In other words...if husband is late then eat without him.

The Salsa Verde on the potatoes here is made from the leaves of 1/2 a bunch of mint, a bunch of flat-leaf parsley, 1 clove garlic, 2 T. red wine vinegar, 1 heaped tsp. Dijon mustard 1 heaped tsp. capers and 2 cornichons. It was really good but I am not really sure what makes it a "Salsa Verde".

This is the spinach salad-simple but tasty- It was made from baby spinach with the leaves from 1/2 a bunch of mint sliced finely. The dressing is just olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Salt and pepper and the juice of 1/2 a lemon.

This meal took me about 40 min. to make I believe but I forgot to time it. It was amazingly good and we have already made a semi-repeat of the meal. I cooked it without the fish and then put it over fettuccine for Garrett's birthday dinner. It was really fantastic with a little fresh parmesan grated over the top. Yum! Both the original meal and the Birthday dinner received a 10 from everyone. This meal will go into the favorite's list because it was easy and delicious. It would be really great comfort food that is healthy as well.

1 comment:

  1. Yay a new post! and wow this looks delicious! I especially love the idea of it over pasta.