Monthly Archives: July 2012

broiled salmon with spicy greens and rice

Broiled Salmon with Spicy Greens and Black Rice. . .for breakfast!

chard

I’m going to keep this short and sweet after yesterday’s marathon read.  If the idea of fish and dark leaf greens for breakfast strikes you as odd, you are not alone.  My husband looked at me with a wary eye when I suggested this experiment.  Since returning from our Australian health-pocalypse, I’ve been trying harder than ever to make sure each meal we consume is jam packed with wellness-inducing goodness.  This meal, if you can overcome its strangeness to the American breakfast palate, is overflowing with omega 3 fatty acids, folic acid, vitamin c, amazing lean protein, vitamins B12, A, C, K, E, etc.  The combination of the salmon, greens, garlic and olive oil make this an anti-inflammatory powerhouse.  If you can’t find black rice, try brown rice or quinoa.  I used chard as my green, but collards, spinach or kale would work wonderfully.  If you find you simply cannot convince your stomach that fish is an acceptable breakfast food, switch it in for lunch or dinner (Jason really likes the meal, just not in the morning).  To make morning prep. shorter and more efficient I cook the rice, check the salmon for bones, and clean and chop the greens the night before.

broiled salmon with spicy greens and rice

Broiled Salmon with Spicy Greens and Black Rice

serves 2

Ingredients

3 to 5 ounces of salmon per person

3 cups cleaned and chopped dark leafy greens

1/2 lemon

1 or2 cloves garlic, sliced

1 cup cooked black rice

olive oil

salt

pepper

red pepper flakes

Directions

Cook rice per directions of chosen variety.  For the rice I use, 1/2 c. uncooked rice and 1 cup of water brought to a boil, covered and heat reduced to low.  Cook roughly 25-30 minute, then check to see if rice has absorbed liquid.  If so, remove from heat, cover with a clean towel and allow to steam for 10 minutes.  Fluff rice with fork before serving.

Arrange salmon on parchment covered baking pan; season with salt and pepper and brush with sparingly with olive oil.  In oven, move rack to highest position and turn broiler on high.  Just before transferring salmon to the over, squeeze fresh lemon juice over it.  Cook to desired doneness, but do not overcook (overcooked salmon is closely akin to shoe rubber).

Meanwhile place garlic in a cold pan with 1 Tbs of olive oil and turn heat on to medium high.  Once you begin to smell the garlic, add greens and stir to coat with oil.  Season lightly with salt, and with red pepper flakes to taste. The point is not to reduce the greens to dark squiggles of slime, but to wilt and warm; they should finish up precisely in time with the salmon.  Squeeze remaining lemon juice over greens before serving.

See, short and sweet!  Ciao.

 

Gandalf Trail

Down Under the Weather

Westlake, Yarralumla

The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men

Gang aft agley,  Robert Burns

In other words, things don’t always go as planned.  I mentioned in this post that Jason and I would be returning to Canberra, Australia for the month of June.  We were really excited about the opportunity and it built up in our minds into a fairly important, potentially life-altering trip.  During our January sojourn health, happiness and suitability lined up so wonderfully that we were even considering a move to Canberra or a similar climate!  Can you see the expectations mounting?

The flights over went as beautifully as 26 hours of travel could go (Dramamine, where have you been all my life?!).  Setting down finally in Canberra, we disembarked into what seemed a remarkably mild winter .  Came the first surprise:  we were taken to an apartment we were sharing with two other guys!  Yep. . .I’ve never had a roommate, other than my husband; I didn’t live in dorms at college, and I had no full time siblings growing up.  I was feeling some trepidation about not knowing the rules of living with other people and how sharing space works (also fears of being loathed by Jason’s co-workers by month’s end).  Luckily, I’m pretty sure it was the easiest introduction to roomies that anyone ever had;   the guys were great and we bonded over rugby and the flu.

That’s right, surprise number two:  all of us got the flu; in fact, it seemed like all of Canberra had the flu.  Jason and I were able to hang on steadily through the first week and a half feeling a bit tired and run down, but completely able to function.   We took in the Canberra University vs. Wales game at the Olympic training grounds, visited our favorite restaurants (hi, Tom!),found some new favorites (Brodburger– best burger in Canberra), and spent as much time as possible up in the hills.

Canberra University vs. Wales

bottom of the hill

half way up the hill

top of the hill. . .lovely

Rain forced me inside several times this trip, allowing me to taking in an amazing exhibition of Antarctic photography , a stunning touring exhibition of von Guerard landscapes, and a really interesting series of paintings about the life and career of Ned Kelly at the NGA.

Sidney NOLAN, Ned Kelly

Ned Kelly by Sidney Nolan. Image property of NGA

Finally, we both landed like a ton of bricks, oozing, hacking,wheezing and sneezing our second weekend away.  My insistence that fresh air would be good for us, and exercise boost our immune systems earned me a secondary upper respiratory infection.  After a successful trial run with the Australian health care system, antibiotics, and a few days of lying in bed with soup and P.G. Wodehouse, I convinced myself that I was well enough to spend my last full day up in the hills I love, watching kangaroos nap, kookaburras laugh, and myriad parrots, parakeets and cockatoos paint the sky with their dazzling plumage.

Wodehouse. . .I know, I have a problem

Gandalf Trail, Red Hill

Macedonian Orthodox Church St. Kliment of Ohrid

kookaburra on approach to Mt. Mugga Mugga

kangaroo on Red Hill

I’m glad that I got out that last day, even though I subsequently added a sinus infection to the list of woes.  Being sick when we could have been well, cold when we could have been warm, and watching the sun go down at 4pm, knowing it was shining on well into the evening at home was making us both a bit dour while we were trapped in the apartment.  Getting back up into the hills, being bathed in sunshine allowed for a return to balance and an important lesson.  Since moving to the D.C. area I have been both continually ill and ill at ease.  I’ve always wondered if I really dislike the area, or if it is merely a circumstantial prejudice.  Knowing how much I loved Canberra in January, and seeing how close I had come to thinking it a miserable hole while sick, I’m inclined to try harder to see the sunny side of D.C.  So, no, we are not moving to Canberra, the trip was a total bust for testing respiratory health in different climates and we were absolutely ready to come home.  We would love to go back, eventually, and I miss the gum trees and birds every time I go outside, but for now we are quite content to ‘bide a wee here in D.C.


frost at Fyshwick