As every growing family knows, the more little people you create, the less time there is for savoring some of life’s most beautiful fundamentals – taking in a sunset, browsing the season’s new lipsticks in person, and a languid afternoon of any kind…
When Dean and I first started dating, we cooked together most every night. As a childless couple, that tradition flourished! It started as play time for foodies but we grew to love being in the kitchen together most nights. Chopping vegetables, sipping wine, catching up as winemakers…before adjourning for the more (ahem) athletic activities of the night.
Then came Anni, our exquisite pixie drill sergeant. And it was a good 8 months before we had some breathing room to get back into a cooking/kitchen routine. And now, as of three weeks ago, our son Vincent Coltrane is our new and beloved force of nature. With two babies under 3 — and a vineyard starting to push this year’s harvest — life is an exhausting roar of diapers, feedings, cuddles, work, tag-team parenting, dishes, and runs to Safeway for more butt balm. And if I’m really lucky, I get a shower just before dinner. Forget trying new recipes or techniques!
Still, when you have wine and food running your bloodstream, you have to dust off the Old Girl every so often. No matter how tired you are. So you apply that new lipgloss and turn on your oven! Sticking to super quick, delicious standbys. This is one of the best and a mostly intact recipe from Jamie Oliver…
A Divinely Delicious and Rustically Charming Fish Bake:
Ingredients in One Pretty Baking Dish:
* adjust any of these to taste or for party size. This feeds 4 people with zero left overs…
- 2 fresh Salmon steaks, skin side UP (preferably fresh caught & wild)
- 10-15 prawns with skins ON (so they steam in their own juices)
- 3-5 garlic cloves (rough chopped or quartered)
- 2 lemons – washed and quartered. To be used for squeezing roasted fresh lemon juice over the meal once plated!
- 1 handful fresh basil (if you have it) – leaves torn
- 1-2 Red chilies (spicy or mild) – cored and seeded and then quartered. If you do not have chilies, use a sprinkling of red chili pepper flakes
- 3-6 tomatoes (depending on size – quartered
- 1 bunch fresh asparagus, woody ends snapped off and discarded
- Several glugs of olive oil
- Kosher Salt and only a twist or two of fresh cracked Pepper
Preheat the oven to Broiling with the rack in the middle
Place salmon in the center of the dish with skin UP. Attractively assemble all vegetables in your baking dish. Using your hands, toss the ingredients lightly so to coat everything with the olive oil and salt. Next rub the asparagus stalks briefly before artfully arranging over the top of the entire dish.
Pop the baking dish into the oven for 10 full minutes.
Remove and check to see if salmon is cooked enough for you. Serve immediately. Encourage everyone to drizzle his or her plates with the roasted fresh lemon juice…. It really makes the meal.
Pair it with a green salad (tossed with your good olive oil and fresh lemon) and our brand new Big Pink Rose of Zinfandel. The best dang dry Rose you will ever have. EVER. And a perfect pairing with this dish… www.annadelestatewinery.com
Note: Super healthy, delicious and takes all of 20 minutes from start to finish. Tops.