Tilapia Cakes with Couscous

27 10 2011

Sorry, all. I haven’t been blogging AT ALL lately!  Mostly because I haven’t been cooking anything new.  I’ve been so swamped with work, grad school, and starting preparations for South Africa, that I’ve marked plenty of new recipes but I keep falling back to old ways.  I’ve been working off of recipes I already know, since I don’t really have more time to invest in trying out new recipes.  But I’m trying to get back on the new food train.  Here’s something I pulled together somewhat recently.

I found a recipe for tilapia cakes in Real Simple and knew I had to try it!  It was pretty simple – I cooked the tilapia through (and I pretty much always keep tilapia in my fridge), then cooled it, shredded it, and then combined it with some dill, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, panko crumbs, and salt and pepper.  Then I cooked it for 2-3 minutes on each side.

While I was doing all of that, I cooked up some couscous and heated up some frozen brussel sprouts.  To make the brussel sprouts a little more exciting, I then sauteed them in a pan with some minced garlic.  It turned out really well and made 3 servings which was a nice surprise.  It was all really flavorful, and even writing this post, reminded me how easy it was, and that I should make this again sometime soon! Here are some pictures:

Happy eating!


Salmon Cakes with Creamy Orzo & Asparagus

11 03 2011

The Show $10 Dinners with Melissa D’Abarabian on the Food Network is pretty good, and I happened to catch an episode where she made these salmon cakes and this orzo, and had to give it a try!

I’ve never worked with canned salmon before, so that was certainly an experience (to get all the little bones out) and then the process of rolling each cake.  I wasn’t happy with the consistency when it started out (I don’t have a potato masher – go figure) so I only had little slices of potato in the cakes instead of mashed potatoes.  Next time I’ll be sure to get a masher so it can reach the right consistency.

The orzo was much simpler than I thought it would be – I did have to keep it on the stove a little longer than the recipe called for, but I always anticipate everything taking longer than the recipe says.  Asparagus was on sale the week I went grocery shopping, so I just drizzled olive oil, salt, and pepper on the asparagus and roasted it in the oven while everything else was cooking.

Some of the salmon cakes came out a little burned, and it was hard to keep them together since the consistency was a little more runny than I would have liked them to be.  But overall the taste was great and when cooked the salmon cakes were really great!  I liked the taste and the orzo was a good complement to the cakes.  If anything I definitely learned something about how to make cakes like this (perhaps I’ll try crab cakes soon…) and can use this knowledge in the future!  Here it is:

Happy eating!

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

2 02 2011

I went on a seafood kick and made this recipe that I found on the Food Network website.  It’s always pretty hard for me to find Italian-inspired recipes that fit along with the food I can eat, but this one was pretty simple and tasted great.  I bought a lot of shrimp (which I also used to make lemon basil shrimp) so had plenty of it leftover to make this!

The dish had a little kick to it which made it exciting, but I may tone down the amount of red pepper flakes next time since I didn’t really measure it out.  The rest of the ingredients were all ones that I had at hand and it was pretty easy to throw together.  I served it over some pasta (leftover from my italian bean soup) and made 3-4 servings.  Sorry for the tupperware photo – this dish went right into containers to be eaten another day.  With my schedule I have to cook when I have the free time, so sometimes I don’t even get to eat what I make until the next day!

Happy eating!

Lemon and Basil Shrimp

30 01 2011

I’m venturing into the world of cooking seafood.  I’m pretty scared of it overall because seafood is so easy to mess up but I’ve done a few successful shrimp dishes so I’m starting to get a little more confident in my own cooking.

This was a pretty simple recipe that I found so I gave it a try.  It was quick and healthy, and really flavorful with the lemon zest.  Since the sauce was so simple it seemed like a shrimp scampi but without all the calories of a heavier butter sauce.  This was great for a quick dinner!  Here it is:

Happy eating!

Packet Tilapia

19 01 2011

I made this as a quick dish for my friend Tamra when she came over for dinner and a TV watching party a few weeks ago.  I’ve cooked fish in packets before, but when I did it previously it was with salmon, and I wasn’t sure how it turned out.  I researched some other ‘packet recipes’ and took my chances.

I seasoned my tilapia with salt, pepper, and herbs de provence, and poured some diced tomatoes over the fish (or really, around the fish).  I rolled the foil to make sure the packets were sealed tight, and then popped them in my toaster oven.  The two packets fit pretty snug in the microwave oven, but that way I could keep a closer eye on the fish.  I think I cooked it for about 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees.  In the meanwhile, I cooked up some rice in my rice cooker and steamed broccoli on top of that.

When it came it, everything was great!  The diced tomatoes made a nice sauce that I used to pour over the broccoli and rice, and the tilapia came out nice and flaky and really flavorful.  It was a quick and easy dinner that I definitely recommend!  Here it is:

Happy eating!


Shrimp stir-fry

23 12 2010

I cooked this up as a quick lunch a while back for me and some of my housemates.  I tend to do these types of “clean out the refrigerator/pantry” dishes every once in a while, and this was definitely one of them.

I discovered a package of Kikkoman stir-fry seasoning mixture in my pantry, and had some frozen shrimp left over from a few other dishes.  I had plenty of broccoli in my freezer (it’s pretty much the only vegetable I can eat) and also had leftover mushrooms and onions.  Put those all in a wok and voila! Stir fry!

I served my stir-fry over rice, and despite the fact that the mix came from a package, it all worked really well.  Of course, I’d love to be able to make my own sauce one day .. but for now, this will have to do.

Happy eating!


10 11 2010

New Orleans is one of my favorite cities that I have visited in the United States thus far.  I’ve been there twice for service projects and the food there is fantastic.  One of my favorite restaurants is Mother’s – if you ever go to New Orleans, the food there is superb and classic.

Anyways, I had a box of Uncle Ben’s Jambalaya mix sitting in the back of my pantry, so I figured I might as well put it to good use.  When things are on sale, I’ll buy them and put them in my pantry for a rainy day (I actually made this on a rainy day too, while I was babysitting the leak that was in my family room ceiling).  Finally, I pulled together this semi-homemade recipe.  I had shrimp in the freezer (from another recipe) and then bought some cajun andouille sausage.  I bought a package with 4 large links and it was the perfect amount.  Then I just had to simmer together the rice, sausage, and shrimp, and voila! Lots of jambalaya!

The great thing about simmering the meat to begin with is that it really got to absorb the sauce and flavors of the rice.  Eventually, I’d love to be able to make gumbo, which is more of a stew … I’ll add that to my ever-growing list of recipes that I want to try.  My housemates will very often get the leftovers of my dishes as well, and they were very pleased with the jambalaya.  The cajun andouille sausage had just the right amount of spice and definitely made the entire dish really flavorful.

Here’s how it turned out:

Happy eating!