you'd think from this blog that i'm some sort of natural gourmand. but the truth is, i ate horribly until i met mr. mimi -- my palette was unadventurous and whatever i did eat was of the worst nutritional balance. one of the things i love about our relationship is how much i've learned and experienced with new foods over the years.
and although this dinner isn't so lofty, it was something new for me since i've never had a real honey mustard dressing before. it's embarrassing to admit, but the only honey mustard i've ever had is the sticky sweet kind in those plastic containers from random eating out at mcdonalds. and i don't mean to sound like a gourmand, but how does one ever think that is the way food tastes? mcdonalds might be an extreme comparison, and it's not like i ate junk food or fast food on a regular basis. but so much of what i used to eat that's considered "natural" was just a processed version of something that is so simple to make at home -- and dressings are a prime example. if you don't believe me, then surely you'd believe mark bittman! but if you need more proof, try this recipe that is super easy but full of flavor (aren't all donna hay recipes pretty easy but so tasty? that's why i love them).
pan roasted chicken with honey mustard dressing: serves 4
adapted from donna hay (spring 2009, issue 47)
4 chicken breasts
4 large carrots, sliced
6-8 baby potatoes, halved (or quartered if too large)
1 package of baby spinach leaves
salt and pepper
1 tb whole grain mustard
1 tb honey
1 tb white wine vinegar
1. preheat oven to 375F. make the honey mustard dressing by combining the mustard, honey, vinegar, and 1/4 cup olive oil in bowl; set aside.
2. toss carrots and potatoes with olive oil and salt and pepper, place on baking sheet and roast for about 15-20 minutes.
3. meanwhile, salt and pepper the chicken breasts and heat oil in skillet on medium high heat. sear each side of chicken breast until golden brown, about 4 minutes each side.
4. put chicken breasts on top of carrots/potatoes on tray and continue roasting everything until chicken has internal temp of 165F, and carrots/potatoes are cooked through, about 20 more minutes.
5. toss spinach leaves with carrot and potato to warm and slightly wilt. serve with chicken breast on top and spoon over dressing to serve.
just because i don't like salmon doesn't mean i don't like white fish fish (although now that i think about it, i do like salmon when it's raw suhi, but not cooked). we tend to make the same kind of fish dinners, only because we like to keep the flavors really simple and clean. this recipe is really no different, just another great combination of all the things i like -- asparagus from the farmer's market, potatoes, and capers. it's a super easy recipe, and with a great presentation and hardly any work involved at all, it would be a great option for a small dinner party, too.
roasted fish, potato, and asparagus with dill butter: serves 2
adapted from donna hay (spring, 2009 issue no. 47)
4 baby potatoes, sliced
1 lb firm white fish fillets
1 bunch thin-medium asparagus, trimmed
1 tb capers
2 tb butter
1 tb dill leaves
salt and pepper to taste
1. preheat oven to 400F. toss potato and asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper (not too much salt because of the fish and capers in the dish). place potato on baking tray and roast for 25 minutes.
2. season fish with oil, salt and pepper. add fish and asparagus to tray and roast for 15-20 minutes or until the fish is cooked through and the potatoes are golden.
3. combine the butter and dill and spoon over fish, garnish with capers and squeeze of lemon (donna roasted the capers along with the fish).