So, it's been a while. Quite a long while, actually. It's a little embarrassing.
And yes, the usual excuses apply. Long work days, business travel, no time to plan, shop or cook -- much less photograph, write and post. When I've found my way to the kitchen, I've relied on standbys -- meals you've read about here, or, frankly, meals that just aren't blog-worthy.
I've learned that for me, blogging is a little like exercising: when I drift away from my routine, I have to really push myself to get out there again. So, I'm pushing. Easing back into the kitchen, trying to get creative, planning menus.
I started slowly. You know, walking before I run. And, honestly, since my actual exercise routine has also been somewhat neglected these past weeks, I was thinking about something light. Something spring-like.
At first, I was thinking salmon. But then, at my local market, I saw something new to me: Barramundi. A sturdy white fish that apparently boasts as many Omega-3 fatty acids as salmon. Or so says Dr. Oz. And my fishmonger.
I was intrigued. At home, I unwrapped my catch, sprinkled on some sea salt and freshly crushed black pepper, and allowed it to sit for a bit. Meanwhile, Wes prepped a green salad and some roasted grape tomatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper and a bit of grated parmesan.
I poured olive oil into an enamelled cast iron skillet, patiently waited it for it to get hot, and slid in the fillets. It sizzled comfortingly, a familiar, welcome sound. About five minutes later, as the sides of the fish began to whiten more brightly and I could tell they wouldn't stick to the pan, I flipped and waited another few minutes.
Then, I slipped the fillets onto a platter, tucked a minced garlic clove, a tablespoon of chopped lemon thyme and the zest and juice of a Meyer lemon into the pan, and deglazed with a big splash of dry white wine. Another satisfying sizzle. A final step: a small pat of butter, enough to give the sauce a little depth and a silky finish. Swirled it around a few times -- done.
I plated, drizzled some sauce atop the fillets and tried my new find. Barramundi is mild and meaty, with a texture and flavor resembling halibut. I learned it should be well seasoned and can stand up to strong, hearty ingredients and sauces. And I discovered a new find for my repertoire.
Truly, a simple dish. But a great start. I think I'm finding my stride again. Next up, that nice long run...