Salmon with rhubarb chutney

The tastiness. I got this recipe out of a west coast cookbook my mum got me for my birthday last year and that is so far woefully underused (but with a 100% success rate, so…).

The chutney is just 2 cups of rhubarb, 1/2 cup chopped crystallized ginger, 1/4 cup of raspberry vinegar (or red wine vinegar, which I used), a pinch of salt and 1/4 cup of sugar, cooked until a bit thick and the rhubarb is all broken down. Serve it over salmon that you’ve pan fried, skin side up for 5 minutes in a hot pan without moving it at all and then finishing it off in a 400F oven for 4 to 5 minutes. This ensures that the skin comes off easily when you’re eating it. Had it with some quinoa, steamed broccoli and a fruity gewürtztraminer for extra elegance

BUTTER.

I haven’t made butter from scratch in a couple of years. It’s so easy that there’s really no excuse. Just whip cream until it breaks down, squeeze out the buttermilk (and then keep that for another use because it is so tasty) and add salt to taste. Delicious on my lahuhua bread.

Sausage with chickpeas and chard

I adapted this recipe from The Kitchn to become a make-ahead meal for a friend and I tonight. I subbed in Swiss chard for kale (since I love kale but hate washing it), and cooked it up with the onion, sausage and chickpeas this morning before I left for work. When it was time to eat, I just warmed it up in the microwave and served it with a poached egg on top. It was great but I’d love to try baking the eggs on top sometime too, as called for. Kind of like shakshuka but not really.

Simon’s rhubarb sponge cake

Haven’t made this since high school. My cousin told me back then about a cake he sort of made up that was just rhubarb tossed with some ginger in a pan, and covered with sponge cake mixture. A guy at work has a surplus of rhubarb, so I went over yesterday to grab some and this is what I made. I don’t have my cousin’s sponge cake recipe anymore but I looked up another and the cake is fantastic. I am of course sharing it with my colleagues as having a pan full of cake all to myself would be a dangerous thing indeed.

Deep dark chocolate cookies

So I have this thing where I often cook without reading the recipe fully first. Sometimes it ends in disaster, sometimes I’m ok. It’s a crapshoot. These delightful cookies turned out great; the only consequence of getting to the end of the dough-making portion and thinking “Oh crap! When does the flour go in?!” was that I unintentionally made amazing gluten-free cookies.

They’re soft, sweet and chocolatey. I will be making them again.

Garlic soup

I’d never thought of making this until a friend mentioned it several weeks ago. Saturday kind of felt like a soup-making day, so I gave it a shot. It didn’t turn out quite how I expected; I think I need to find a recipe with quite a bit more  butter in it. As it stands, this recipe is still quite good and is an excellent dipping sauce for pork tenderloin.

Ingredients:

Good-quality olive oil to coat soup pot
3 bulbs garlic, peeled and halved
1 onion, peeled and cut into chunks
4 ribs celery, cut up
2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
2 cups white wine
6 cups water
6 bay leaves
1 tablespoon of pot herbs, or more to taste (I use the Spice House brand)
1 teaspoon ground oregano
Black pepper to taste

In large soup pot, heat oil. Add garlic, onion and celery and cook over low heat, uncovered, until vegetables are browned and softened, 5 to 10 minutes.

Add liquids and spices and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, 2 to 3 hours until liquid has been reduced about a third. Let cool, then remove bay leaf. Using an immersion blender liquefy the soup.

Cool slightly, then pour into mason jars and refrigerate. When ready to serve, shake jars to mix ingredients. Pour into coffee cups or soup bowls, reheat and serve warm