Tag Archives: Birthday

For Patricia: Olive-Oil Poached Salmon with Greens

28 Sep

Today is a very special day.  One of my mom’s very best and oldest friends has a milestone birthday to celebrate! My sister and I have known this spectacular woman for as long as we can remember.  She is one of the biggest fans of this blog endeavor of mine.  She is probably the first to read my latest recipe, always asking my mom, “Have you seen Colby’s post today?!”  The continued support means the world.  So, I would like to give her a birthday surprise and dedicate this one to her! 🙂

I know my mom and the rest of their lady group will be dining together this evening, so I thought I would try a recipe that I know she would love even though I can’t be there to make it for all of them.  If you’ve been following this blog at all, you know I’m an avid salmon eater, and so is Patricia! In the past I have always cooked salmon on the grill or in the oven, but I saw a recipe in Women’s Health Magazine that peaked my interest: poached salmon in olive oil.  And let me tell you, it is definitely worthy of a birthday dinner.  Quick, healthy, affordable, and with an air of fancy.

You’ll need:

  • Water
  • Salt
  • 6 oz. salmon fillet (per person).  I got mine for $6 at Whole Foods because yes, we are nomming on a budget.
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 garlic clove
  • Bottle of extra-virgin olive oil. The cheapest you can get is probably $8 but the rich flavor is worth it.

In a large bowl, whisk together a cup of water and 1/8 cup salt per fillet.  Add fillet and soak for 4 minutes.  Remove and pat dry.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

In a large skillet, squeeze half a lemon’s worth of juice.  Mince and add garlic clove (you can add as much garlic as you are prone to enjoying; for me that means a whole clove). Fill the skillet with enough olive oil to cover the fillet.  Try and use good-quality oil for the poaching, as the fish will pick up some of it’s flavor.  Heat on medium until a food thermometer reads about 125 degrees.  I do not possess such an instrument, so I kept the oil at a robust simmer and didn’t let it get close to boiling (which is 212 degrees).  Add the fillet and cook until internal temperature reaches 115 to 145 degrees.  I maintained the aggressive simmer, and did so for 12 minutes exactly.


Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Remove fillet to a wire rack to drain for a few minutes.  I again do not have this kitchen accessory, so I simply kept the fish on a perforated spatula over a plate so the oil could drip down (#cookinghacks).  Serve with a lemon wedge and some greens (or any side of your choosing!).  I went with sauteed spinach and tomatoes, sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Look at the pretty golden skin! Apparently this is because the “deep poach”, unlike frying, does not allow the liquid to get near boiling.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Frankly, I was nervous to cut the fish open and see if it had actually cooked.  But look! Proof that it is a perfectly medium-rare and flaky fish.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Patricia, I hope you enjoy your day and get to celebrate with lots of laughter and love! Feel free to try this new salmon recipe, and let me know how you like it!

Birthday Month Round 1: Pancake Birthday Cake!

20 Aug

So as I mentioned in a previous post, my roomie bestie turned the big 2-6 on Sunday! To cheer her out of the “road to late twenties” blues, we had a marvelous idea… make her a PANCAKE CAKE! What better thing to wake up to for a Sunday birthday brunch? I’ll tell you what: nothing.  It only calls for a handful of simple ingredients, but is definitely a labor of love.  I initially found a fancy recipe that called for making the pancake batter AND the roasted-pecan buttercream frosting, and while I love my friend more than anything, I knew by the time I got my butt out of bed on Sunday and made everything, we would be eating at 4pm.  Not fun (especially for her, silly morning bird). SO I resorted to the ever-delicious classic Bisquick mix, an enormous stockpile of fresh blueberries, and delightful vanilla cream icing.  I knew I wanted a big tower of ’em, so I definitely used up all of the batter to make a whopping 10 pancakes!

Use a non-stick skillet and carefully make each pancake, trying to ensure that the batter meets the edges of the pan so they’re all roughly the same size.  Then scatter in a few blueberries and press into the batter.  Cook on LOW heat for 1-2 minutes on each side, checking periodically for doneness.  Make sure when you press down, no batter oozes out from the middle.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset


Check out the stack! If you’re making anything else to accompany the pancake monstrosity, let the stack sit in the oven on a low 170 or 180 degrees to keep relatively warm until you’re ready to frost.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

We used a full can of frosting and put a thin layer between each pancake and then around the entire thing.  Pro tip: Stick a few of those super long, skinny wooden skewers in the middle of the cake all the way down so the layers don’t move around while you’re trying to frost the whole way around.  We circled the cake with some fresh strawberries for the final product!

photo 1

photo 2

Don’t be afraid of any oozing frosty.  That’s the good stuff.  Make your own pancake cake rendition and eat up!!


So close to wine


By Amy Purfield-Clark


Discovering new Foodventures with each bite

Madison Sheffer

a creative communicator

%d bloggers like this: