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Portland, Oregon food blog with many years worth of recipes, restaurant features, and food photos.

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Fennel-Crusted Tuna with Lemon Aïoli Over Couscous

Fennel-crusted tuna

I think this is one of my new favorite tuna meals. It can be served warm or cold, making it a perfect meal year-round. Since we are still a little cold out, I opted for warm, but you could just as easily making everything earlier in the day (up to actually slicing the tuna), refrigerate it and just plate it all before eating.

One other change that I made was to use Whole Wheat Pearl (Israeli) Couscous instead of regular couscous. If you do this, the cooking time will be a little longer, just follow the instructions on the package, but you’ll probably have to simmer it all for about 15-20 minutes.

Also tuna and fennel? Wow, such a wonderful combination. I even made this with some frozen, Trader Joes’s wild Ahi Tuna (I popped it in the fridge the night before to defrost). Really good and the price makes this an official “cheap fish project” meal. Hooray!

We had a little tuna leftover (I started with about a pound of tuna), so I tossed that with some whole wheat pasta, some sauteed broccolini and olive oil/lemon juice for lunch the next day.

Fennel Crusted Tuna with Lemon . . . → Read More: Fennel-Crusted Tuna with Lemon Aïoli Over Couscous

Epic Marinated & Grilled Pork Tenderloin

pork tenderloin

I. This is some really good pork tenderloin. You definitely need to grill some this Summer. Just pick a day and do it, you won’t be sorry.

II. I started volunteering at the Montavilla Farmers Market taking photos and it’s so fun. I’m posting my pics on flickr, both in sets and also, adding the best ones to the Montavilla Farmers Market group.

III. You should enter the Bob’s Red Mill Spar for the Spurtle (oatmeal!) contest. The details are below.

But first, let’s get back to the pork. A pork tenderloin is the perfect thing to grill in my opinion, because it’s on there just long enough to make the 30+ minutes you waited on the coals seem worth it. After 15 or so minutes you are rewarded with delicious, juicy, tender pork. Hooray!

Epic Marinated & Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Will feed 2-3, more people? Get more tenderloins & double the sauce. Recipe adapted from Charlie Palmer on Sara’s Secrets
1 pork tenderloin
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup honey
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp fresh orange juice
1 tbsp minced fresh rosemary
1 tbsp minced shallots
1/2 tsp minced fresh ginger

Trim the tenderloin of all fat and silverskin. . . . → Read More: Epic Marinated & Grilled Pork Tenderloin

Cedar-Plank Salmon

cedar-planked salmon

Here is a recipe that certainly will work outdoors on a grill but also worked quite well in the oven. I found these little 6 X 6 inch or so cedar grilling planks at Sur la Table for $10 and impulse-bought them. Then I on-purpose bought some salmon.

I soaked my plank for about an hour and a half. If it was going on a charcoal grill the fish *, I would have soaked it for at least two hours. I let the plank heat up in the oven for about 5 minutes, before placing the salmon on it. I don’t actually know how much flavor the cedar imparted on the salmon, but wow, did it smell good while in the oven. These planks were officially, single serving size but I found I could easily fit the two pieces of salmon on it.

Also, since my plank was not too charred, I rinsed it off with hot water (no soap) and plan on using it again.

Oh and I can not stress enough how good the maple-mustard-rosemary crust on the salmon was…really, I can’t. I just can’t at all. Nope, not even going to try. And, if . . . → Read More: Cedar-Plank Salmon

Grilled Garlic Steak with Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce

steak title

This is a meal inspired by a dinner that jwa had at his parents house a little while ago. He had gone down there to help them with some things and returned with tales of steak with garlic in it. Mmmmm…garlic in steak. I was intrigued. Such a great idea!

So, we grilled some up, with the addition of chimichurri sauce and some grilled veggies.

This was also a great opportunity to use out new outdoor grill — I still love it!

For the Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce:
Adapted from a recipe from Bob Blumer, The Surreal Gourmet
1/2 cup lightly packed chopped flat leaf parsley
1/2 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves
3 to 5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp chili pepper flakes
2 tbsp shallot or onion, minced
3/4 cup olive oil
3 tbsp sherry wine vinegar, or red wine vinegar
1-2 tbsp lemon juice

Steak:
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
3 tbsp kosher salt
2 1/2 pounds rib-eye, New York strip, or sirloin steak, 1 1/2 inches thick
3 cloves of garlic, cut into slivers

Preheat your grill. You could also do this inside on a grill pan. If you cook on a grill pan, omit the salted water/cayenne mixture. Just salt the steak before cooking.

steak . . . → Read More: Grilled Garlic Steak with Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce

Summer Side Dish: Grilled Zucchini with Garlic and Lemon Butter Baste

zuc title

This was a side dish that worked really well with some grilled albacore tuna steaks. For the fish, I made a quick topping of kalamata olives, green olives, cherry tomatoes, red onion, olive oil, lemon juice and feta cheese. So, it was a Mediterranean kind of a thing (one of my favorite kinds of things).

The zucchini grilled while the fish rested. I think the scores in the zucchini are to let the buttery goodness soak in. This recipe is easily halved or even quartered. I did the later with 2 tbsp butter, 1/2 tbsp lemon, 1/4 tsp each of the spices and a pinch of curry. Oh and yes — there was cheese!

Grilled Zucchini with Garlic and Lemon Butter Baste
recipe adapted from Bon Appétit magazine
8 medium zucchini (about 2 1/2 pounds), trimmed, halved lengthwise
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon-pepper seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp powder
grated Parmesan cheese (optional? no, not really…)

Preheat barbecue (medium heat). Alternately, heat up a grill pan over medium-high heat. Score cut side of zucchini halves diagonally about 1/4 inch deep at 1-inch intervals.

zucchini

Melt butter with lemon juice, lemon-pepper seasoning, garlic . . . → Read More: Summer Side Dish: Grilled Zucchini with Garlic and Lemon Butter Baste