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 :)

Monday, July 4, 2011

J.O. Shrimp With Citrus Salt & Salad, Squid With Jasmine & Lime Salt Over Fennel Salad and Seared Tuna

This recipe comes from one of Jamie's cooking shows I watched on DVD. I believe it was one of the "Oliver's Twist". The meal consisted of Shrimp with citrus salt over orange salad, squid with jasmine and lime salt over fennel salad, and seared Tuna. I didn't make the seared tuna although I am sure it was good and will include the recipe. This is the shrimp with citrus salt on an "orange salad":

To make this salt you use a mortar and pestle and pound together salt, orange zest and ginger. Then since it is kind of wet you can leave it out in the kitchen overnight to dry out or you can dry it out yourself in the oven. I made a little dish out of foil and spread it out in there and dried it out in the oven. According to Jamie the citrus salt will last about a month.
This is the fennel salad with tea and lime salt: To make this salt he used green tea and lime zest. I used Jasmine tea and lime zest and pounded that up in the pestle and mortar. This was dry already and didn't need to be dried out.

To make the orange salad you slice up the oranges you used for zest and lay them out on a tray. Then de-seed and chop a red chili and sprinkle that over top with some chives. sprinkle over salt & pepper and drizzle over a little olive oil. This is the salad you sever under the shrimp.

Finished product is really quite impressive in looks and in taste. My family went crazy for it. For the shrimp I grilled them in a pan with some of the juice from the oranges and a little olive oil. Then I put the shrimp on top of the salad and sprinkled over the citrus salt.

For the squid I laid them out and scored them diagonally both directions so it formed little diamonds across the body. Then I pan fried these dry. After it was cooked I chopped it up and put it in a bowl with a few lugs of olive oil, the jasmine tea salt and the juice of 2 or 3 small limes and tossed. After putting the squid on the chopped fennel I dressed it all with the juices in the bottom of the bowl.

We served it up with liquid kiwi fruit to drink and skipped the seared tuna.

It was all wonderful except the squid. My squid turned out really rubbery and yucky. We have eaten squid here that is really good and not rubbery at all but I will have to look into what makes the difference and try again. The fennel with the dressing though was wonderful.

To make the seared tuna you just need to marinate it in a plastic bag with 1/2 a bottle of soy sauce for hours and then sear it on each side. Slice it and serve with little piles of chives on one side and grated/ground ginger on the other side and a drizzle of soy sauce. Enjoy!

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