Linguine With Salmon, Asparagus, Cherry Tomatoes. And Lots of Other Good Things!
Buzz. Buzz. Buzz. That pretty much sums up the state of my brain when Friday came around. And fried. The word I’d use if asked how my head felt. The last few weeks have been pretty packed and at the same time completely fulfilling and inspiring. It’s always Christmas morning when I head over to the studio. Even when I start feeling the week weighing me down just a tad, I can’t but look at the beautiful shots produced with my team and feel elated and grateful.
This past week was especially packed and fast paced but knowing that we all worked hard and came together as creatives to produce quality original artwork makes me forget the rhythm I imposed on myself. At the end of the day, all you can do is give yourself 100% to what you want to accomplish and be proud of.
And, let’s face it, at the end of the day, all I want is to come home to something easy to put together for dinner and a good glass of wine. When my food stylists don’t have a care package filled with leftovers ready for me to grab on my way out, I have but the distance of the ride home to make a plan.Yes, cooking for one after a full day behind the camera has yet to leave me completely inspired. On the other hand, I cook a bunch of more elaborate/creative/fun things during the weekend. Meals I know would not necessarily jive with the husband so until he moves here permanently in June, I still have full ownership of the kitchen!!
One staple of my week days has been seafood (cooks fast) and pasta (boils fast). Tossed together with plenty of herbs from the garden, lots of seasonal vegetables and dressed with just a drizzle of extra virgin oil, lots of garlic and I am in heaven. And my stomach stops growling. My two favorite seafood/pasta combinations so far have been with hot smoked salmon, caramelized leeks and fresh asparagus or with pan seared salmon, asparagus, cherry tomatoes from my garden, a good bit of lemon zest and lemon thyme. This one is definitely a winner right now. Just plain good and good for you.
Even as a "temporary" single gal, I still take the time to set the table and eat in peace and quiet for a few minutes. One of my little quirks. Just like starting my mornings with a cup of coffee on the back deck. Curious though, what are yours some of your "feel good" routines? A good meal? A little time out? A good piece of chocolate? Please share!
Lemon Thyme Linguine With Salmon And Seasonal Vegetables:
Plenty for two…
1/2 pound fresh or hot smoked salmon (skin on)
a handful asparagus tips, sliced in half lengthwise
a handful cherry tomatoes, sliced thin
4 bundles dried or fresh linguine (I use gf ones)
salt and pepper
zest of half a lemon
a few sprigs lemon thyme
Lots and lots of pan seared garlic (see below)
If using fresh salmon, heat a nonstick pan over medium high heat. Drizzle a little olive oil on the bottom and add the salmon skin side down (the fat released from the skin will further grease your pan so you can flip the salmon without fearing it will stick). Cook for about 4 minutes, flip it with a wide spatula and cook another 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. Once cooled, flake the salmon over a large bowl.
If using hot smoked salmon, separate the skin from the flesh with your fingertips and flake the salmon into small pieces over a large bowl.
To that bowl, add the asparagus, tomatoes (or cooked leeks, broccoli, artichoke hears, etc.. whatever your little heart desires…). Reserve.
Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package, drain well and toss with the salmon and vegetables. Add a little olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
When ready to serve, zest some lemon right over the pasta and add a few leaves of lemon thyme (or basil, or regular thyme…), a few squeezed pan seared garlic cloves, give it a good toss and serve.
Pan Seared Garlic:
I admit, I am a garlic freak. Several times a week, I will set a small pan on the stove and pour about 1/2 inch of olive oil in it while it heats up over medium high, then add a handful of garlic cloves (skin on) and cook tem until tender inside and golden brown on the outside. And then I eat them like candy…
With this pasta dish, once the garlic cloves are cooled, I just squeeze their flesh out of the outer skin right into the bowl before I toss it to serve… So good.