fall is officially here along with simple suppers, a series to showcase dinners that might not always be the prettiest, but will be tasty and time efficient! who has 2 hours to prep and make dinners? full time bloggers, maybe. the rest of humankind? i don’t think so. first up? broiled salmon with pan roasted bacon brussel sprouts and rice pilaf. sound easy? it is. on this particular night, all i wanted was a big pizza or juicy burger and was just not into salmon. alas, it needed to be used. then, once that bacon started cooking and the salmon was popped into the oven..my mouth was watering, per usual.
broiled brown sugar salmon + bacon brussels & rice pilaf (serves 2)
cook your rice according to instructions, this will most likely take the longest time to cook. then pop your broiler on high while you prep your salmon and other ingredients. make sure your oven rack is the highest it can go. wash your brussel sprouts, trim the ends then cut length wise. chop bacon.
mix together your brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne and season with salt and pepper. please note: you do not need every single spice – in this recipe the brown sugar and paprika is needed and the rest is great, but if you don’t have onion powder on hand…no need to go out to the store RIGHT NOW mid cooking to buy it :) place salmon skin side down on a baking sheet lined with foil and rub brown sugar mixture all over it. pop into the broiler for 6-12 minutes depending on thickness.*
heat a cast iron (or heavy bottomed) pan over medium. once heated, throw in bacon and cook until it is just crispy. remove bacon from pan and throw in your brussel sprouts…yep, cook it in that bacon fat. toss the brussel sprouts around so they are evenly coated (you may need to add olive oil if they get dry) and season with salt and pepper. cook until your liking, i prefer mine crispy. this usually takes around 10 minutes. once done, add in bacon and toss.
by now, your rice should be done and fluffy, salmon flaky and brussels will be charred and loaded with bacon.
*general rule is 10 minutes for every one inch in thickness. always check a few minutes before, so if one inch in thickness, check after eight.
enjoy my litter supperistas!
i may have fallen off the wagon for a
little long while but don’t fret, i am back just in time for fall and a perfect dinner pairing for the season. every. single. day. i ask myself “what should i make for dinner tonight?” like i’ve never cooked a day in my life. i have hundreds of dinners pinned, torn out of magazines and on my fridge but in reality, they are either too time consuming, too many ingredients or i’m just not in the mood. but once in awhile, i have an “aha!” moment (rarely). last night it was creamy polenta with roasted tomatoes and pan seared shrimpies. easy peasy, a foolproof weeknight dinner. shall we?
creamy polenta with roasted tomatoes + pan seared shrimp (serves 3-4)
preheat your oven to 400F.
if you bought shrimp, now would be the time to marinate. peel and devein your shrimp – if you are unsure of how, here’s a quickie little video. once you’ve finished, place in a bowl and pour over 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 2 teaspoons of paprika plus some salt + pepper, per usual. place in fridge and let them become friends while preparing your other goodies.
drain your tomatoes and cut them lengthwise in half then peel your garlic and roughly chop those babies up. add those two ingredients to a bowl and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, salt, pepper + 4 spring of rosemary and toss. pour the mixture into a baking dish and throw em in the oven to get all juicy and tasty for 45 minutes, stirring 2-3 times throughout.
onto the polenta….bring 6 cups of water to a boil. once it is boiling, add 1.5 cups of cornmeal in a steady stream while whisking to make sure it doesn’t get lumpy. continue to whisk 1-2 minutes until the polenta thickens. whisk in a few grinds of salt. turn it down to low and let it cook (and bubble) for 15 minutes.
when the polenta has about 5 minutes left, heat up some olive oil in your shrimp pan (i prefer cast iron) and add shrimp. cook shrimp 2-3 minutes per side and voila. once polenta is done, turn off heat and add in your butter, milk, salt and pepper and whisk. to keep your polenta warm, cover it on up. if it gets too thick, add milk.
by now your roasted tomatoes should be finished, take them out and serve over warm polenta and toss some shrimpies on there to finish. grate some cheese over it if you must, which, you pretty much must. TA-DA!