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Posts tagged ‘Kids’

Parfait! A Perfect May Day Surprise!

The tradition of May Day is celebrated around the globe. Each culture has its own take but the traditions boil down to spreading kindness to another.

As a kid I remember leaving little bouquets of hand picked flowers at our neighbors door and enjoying the anonymous aspect of it, or at least I thought I was being sneaky, I’m sure they knew.

Hand picked flowers Hannah WP

Now a quarter mile from my next adult neighbor and further from those with children, no flowers land on our doorstep and well we haven’t a doorbell either, no fun meter here. Yes, life is hard here in the countryside. However, due to modern technology we no longer hike up hill both ways in a snow storm to get to school, we drive and thankfully so does the UPS truck.

Image 30 no logo WP Parfait

You see May Day surprises are still possible. May 1st I found a peculiar box at our front door. Yes, I know who physically left it and so does my dog who is now enjoying his treat.

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I look really surprised

Peculiar because it had ICE CREAM printed all over it. Could it really be? You gotta hand it to today’s transportation system. I knew you could ship live baby chicks but ice cream too? Parfait I say, well not really but that too was printed all over the box as well.

Image 28 no logo parfait WP EVA

Giddy with curiosity that someone would send us ice cream and full of excitement my family opened the box. Front and center we find a “caution dry ice” letter. All of a sudden this gift has an added bonus, ice cream and a learning opportunity/science experiment!

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Image 34 Parfait no logo Eva ice WP

Finding out what happens when…

Image 37 Eva, dry ice Parfait

Dry Ice mixes with apple juice

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The excitement begins!

Image 36 Eva Dry Ice Parfait WP

pretty fun…


Science at it’s best…and fun to watch too!

Image 14 May Day Glo WP

Or, in the sink with water!

Upon further inspection we found the packing slip which spilled the beans on the delicious flavors within.

~Meyer Lemon
What they say it tastes like: Imagine the same sweet and tangy goodness of lemon curd frozen into a smooth and creamy ice cream. We use Meyer lemons, which are thin-skinned and delicately perfumed.

~Mint Stracciatella
What they say it tastes like: Our mint doesn’t taste like candy canes, but rather fresh mint, straight from the garden. That’s because we steep our custard with real organic spearmint leaves from Marigold and Mint. Our delicate, chocolate flakes are made using TCHO organic chocolate and traditional Italian methods.

~Fleur de Caramel
What they say it tastes like: A traditional French caramel with a silky texture and beautiful amber color. We use just the right amount of genuine Fleur de Sel to bring out the deep caramel taste. Neither overly salty nor cloyingly sweet.

~ We also found out who the sender was…Thank you Ira and Courtney for sending such a fun and yummy gift!

funny factoid:

For all those who have spontaneously declared some sort of resolution and broken it before it began…I’ll add I too can sympathize. Not just 2 hours before that peculiar box arrived I had spurted the words ” I think I’ll give up sugar for the month of May”

…maybe the second half of the month of May.

Bon appetit!

Head Shot RachelleRachelle @ caramelize life

“Making Life A Little Sweeter Through Food, Travel and Community”

Bruschetta In Eleven Minutes Tops!

Bruschetta landscape

A favorite in our home because we love Italian food anything, it’s healthy and a snap to make.

Bruschetta in the making

When my daughter was four she came in from munching sweet cherry tomatoes and basil in the garden and exclaimed ” We have a grocery store in our backyard!”  Then she asked…”can we grow a mozzarella plant?” She asked the proper question; can we? If only that were possible. “I wish we could.” was my answer. However, these questions did open the door to researching how mozzarella is made, and where it comes from. I’ve not yet ventured to make it myself, but I hear Mozzarella is pretty easy to produce, so I’ll have to try it and get back to you about that.

Until then, here’s our favorite bruschetta recipe:


1 Local baguette sliced (I love the Mazama Store’s because it has a wee bit of salt on top)
2-3 Red, preferably heirloom, garden tomatoes (however with snow still on the ground, organic vine-ripened tomatoes have the most flavor)
15 Basil leaves or as many as you have slices of bread
Fresh mozzarella (you can find the pre-sliced kind at some stores) to top the slices of bread
salt for sprinkling
Olive oil (Italian) to drizzle
Balsamic Vinegar (aged has a sweeter flavor, but any will do) to drizzle

Bruschetta olive oil drip drop bottle


1. Toast the slices of bread, or if you have time put them over the grill or gas burner, to toast
2. Add sliced mozzarella
3. Add Basil face up to catch some of the oil and balsamic drizzle
4. Add sliced tomatoes to each
5. Sprinkle with salt
6. Drizzle with Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar

Bruschetta Ready To Eat!

Buon Appetito!

* Thank you to Diane, Geof, Linda, Marc, Hannah and Eva for patiently waiting to devour these tasty bites while E.A did his photo dance to capture the bruschetta when freshest.

Head Shot RachelleRachelle @ Caramelize Life

“making life a little sweeter, through food, travel and community”

Potato Leek Soup

Today I sat down to write but found myself procrastinating by looking through my iPhoto library reminiscing about an Ireland trip we took a few years back. This trip ranks high in my all time favorites. We shared it with family and good friends, where we traveled through rolling fields following rainbows start to end, finding our Irish luck in the form of sunshine mid March.

That year my husband turned forty ceremoniously on St. Patrick‘s Day. We learned about falconry, bog ponies, and I found one of my favorite cookbooks The Forgotten Skills of Cooking. We enjoyed our share of Guinness and sampled potato leek soup along the way.

My littlest, is a connoisseur of potato leek soup, she has a discerning palate for the tastiest homegrown potato. She is also privy to the whole process, kudos to Tess Hoke, founder of Local 98856 and the Methow Valley Community School Locavores lunch program where she learned the garden to table journey.

Years later and I am still trying to perfect that tasty soup and win her nod. Until tonight, when I received that approvingly tilt of her towhead and a unanimous two thumbs up from the rest of my family. Nothing feels so good as a warmed bowl of soup steaming with flavor, a local brewed beer in a handcrafted glass to finish off the evening.

Close Up Potato Leek Soup 2/1/13 WP

Potato Leek Soup (serves 6 but I usually double it for left overs and lunch boxes)
[inspired and introduced to me from “around my french table”  and Stew Dietz Event Planning and Catering]

What you will need:

2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 large organic onions chopped
2 organic garlic cloves, germ removed and crushed
Salt, freshly ground white pepper
3 organic leeks white parts only spit lengthwise and chopped thinly
2 large organic russet potatoes peeled and cubed
1 teaspoon dried thyme or a few fresh sprigs
1 teaspoon dried sage or a couple fresh leaves
4 cups homemade vegetable stock (we have a mixture of folks around our table so I play it safe and go veggie most of the time but any stock or water will work).
1 cup whole milk
2 cups half and half (you can omit this and use water, or any combination of dairy just remember it will be lighter).
4-5 croutons per serving

What to do with your scrumptious ingredients:

melt the butter adding onion until coated then add in garlic, salt and pepper, cover and cook until onions are soft 6 minutes or so (making sure not to burn them)
Add leeks, potatoes, thyme, sage, stock and dairy
bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes until potatoes and leeks are soft

Serve in warmed bowls topped with croutons


let soup cool and puree into a thick and creamy soup, then warm and serve
top with cheese or add some colorful chives
serve cold and top with pear or apple

Funny little fact:
In the nineteenth century potatoes were accused of leading housewives astray due to the fact that potatoes required so little time and effort to prepare that it left female hands idle and primed to do the Devil’s work. [good thing I’m too busy for any of that! ;-)]
~Rebecca Rupp

Bain sult as do bhéile! (enjoy your meal)

Head Shot Rachelle Rachelle @caramelize life

“making life a little sweeter through food, travel and community”

Fondue and Football

What do you think of when you hear the word fondue? Snow topped Swiss Mountains, cows with clanging bells that we only hear at ski races and steam filled wooden clad restaurants where the air is permeated with the smell of melted cheese?

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We’ve experienced these warm cozy venues under the Matterhorn‘s shadow and enjoyed true Swiss hospitality high in the mountains with good friends. However, what comes to mind over all, is a crazy combination of Swiss hospitality and an American pastime.

My husband grew up with a New Years Day tradition of fondue and football. So when there are back to back bowl games playing on New Years Day, his family and friends gather and instead of chips and dip they dipped their cubed  bread into the Swiss cheese and yelled at the t.v.


Wanting to continue that family tradition we now host a Methow style fondue and football New Year’s Day party. Opening our doors to friends and family we mix up batches of creamy fondue, and have the games on the tube.

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Personalizing the party we’ve added options for those who think it barbaric to sit and holler at the little people on the screen or just can’t sit still. These folks can stand outside in the below freezing weather and warm their tushies by the outdoor fire and enjoy their brew of choice. Adults get beer, children hot chocolate, we even tried serving fondue outside with an electric pot but I think the jury is still out on that. If you are curious we found the metal pot allows the cheese to separate easier than the ceramic pots but then again it could have been the sub zero temps!

sledding fun

sledding fun

fondue to go

fondue to go

finding the hot spot

finding the hot spot

A party like this only works if everyone pitches in. We ask that our guests bring a hunk of Swiss cheese for melting and something to dip. Then everyone jumps in and helps during the party. Besides the football, sledding and skiing there are always other games to play, easy party ones such as find your boots and kids mittens, those who’ve attended before have learned to bring their most unique outerwear for easy finding.

Image 6 mud room fondue & football 2013 WP

Recipe for Fondue and Football [serves 2 or keep making it and it will serve 150 hungry folks].
A community of friends willing to bring bread, cheese and celebrate football and snow.

All that you need:

2 1/2 cups shredded cheese ( Swiss: Emmenthaler, Gruyere, Jarlsberg)
1 1/2 Tbs flour
1 clove garlic
1 cup dry white wine
salt, pepper and nutmeg
1Tbs Kierschwasser
day old baguette style bread cubed (for dipping)
veggies broccoli, potatoes, cauliflower, etc (steamed for dipping)
fondue fuel for your pot, extra fondue forks


Dredge cheese with flour
rub garlic on the inside of the pot place over stove
add and heat wine until small bubbles form
reduce heat slightly and add cheese slowly in small amounts while stirring
warm the Kierschwasser and add it to the pot
if needed thin with warm wine
sprinkle salt and pepper nutmeg on top to taste


Make ahead: I prepare for this party well in advance, stocking up on Swiss cheese when it’s on sale or buying it in bulk. I shred the cheese ahead of time and pop it in the freezer for later use.

What to do with left over cubed fondue bread? How about bite sized French toast? Or Croutons for soup and salad toppings?
Or if you find yourself with an over abundance of shredded cheese, it’s perfect for that quick quiche recipe to speed up a week night dinner.

En Guete!

34921_1516141470766_1451349916_1355781_1679178_n_21  Rachelle@ Caramelize Life



We at Caramelize Life wish you a wonderful Valentine’s Day filled will all that matters most to you.


Head Shot Rachelle Rachelle @ Caramelize Life
“Making Life a Little Sweeter through Food, Travel and Community”

Columbia River Sockeye Off the Hook

The Sockeye Salmon numbers in the Methow Valley region are off the hook!  Or, to be exact, they’re on our hooks.

Currently, there are over 20,000 Sockeye being observed and recorded over the Columbias Well’s Damm ~ per day.  Wells is a check-point for salmon between headwaters and the ocean.  These fish are counted by live people ~  24 hours a day.

Largely a wild run fishery,  the vast number of salmon are making national news and statistical records.  This high mountain river run is one of the last of it’s kind in the entire country for wild river fish.

That’s according to our resident expert, my husband Wes, who is a Fisheries Biologist here in the Methow Valley for the Department of the Interior (U.S. Geological Survey).  The sockeye percentage alone has increased in number to over 350% over the last ten years.  That is fantastic news in terms of river health, and reflects positively on Dam management of fish populations.

Fresh garden herbs and butter for salmon garnish

Sockeye salmon and other wild fish run up the Columbia River to the the Okanogan River, then travel up to Lake Osoyus, B.C., to the Columbia’s origination.  Wes mentioned after a successful day of fishing this week that the Okanogan River is truly impressive, even on an international level.  It provides a major salmon resource for recreational anglers and Tribal sources.

Sockeye, Summer Chinook, and Stealhead are among the finest fish we gather locally for creating fresh, gourmet cuisine.  But among those, fresh Sockeye are really the cream of the crop ~ in our humble opinion.

Herb~butter, sockeye and ground Brittany Grey salt

The Columbia River real time data access gives up to date statistics on fish to catch:

After a good catch the last few days, we have 8 large Sockeye fillets in the freezer and tasted one off the grill last night.  We grilled Sockeye fillets and tossed fresh baby green beans with cherry tomatoes from the garden.

~ Grilled Sockeye with Herb Butter ~

1 large sockeye salmon fillet

bunches of fresh herbs ~ Dill, oregano, chives, basil, terragon (you may also substitute your preferred combo of fresh herbs ~ rosemary, mint, sage, cilantro are good options).

3 Tablespoons butter

~Coat the fillet in extra virgin olive oil, top and bottom; sprinkle with fresh ground sea salt and pepper.

~Place fish on preheated grill, skin up, and seer for about 2 minutes; turn the fish skin down and seer for 5-7 minutes more.

~Remove from grill and top with herb-butter.

~ Green Bean & Cherry Tomato Salad with Feta & Herb~Lemon Vinaigrette ~

1 lb. fresh green beans

2 cups cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup crumbled feta

~Boil 1 pound of green beans for 5 mintues then rinse in cool water; cut into 1 inch lengths.

~Toss with 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes and the lemon dressing and top with feta.

Herb~Lemon Vinaigrette

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 cloves minced garlic

chopped fresh basil, about 1/2 cup

salt & pepper to taste

And the Winner for the Food with the Highest antioxidant content is…(drum roll please) Part Two

If you are just joining us check out part one of our chocolate tour.

part two…

We hit the prime time to view the cacao tree, because in early to mid June, the tree is in bloom with flowers, new leaves are emerging from the top, and the cacao pods are ripening.  Michelle cut open a cacao pod so we could see the white fibrous center and the seeds nested within.

Did you know that Hawaii is the only state in the USA where chocolate trees grow?

Next on our three hour tour we are happily seated under the big top, the Steelgrass’s newest addition. Here is where we trust Michelle and taste little bits of chocolate from numbered ramekins.

This blind test allows us to banish any preconceived ideas we bring and let our taste buds tell us  what we really like, rather than great marketing. This method draws out each of our inner wine enthusiast and we write down adjectives like smoky, pungent, fruity with a gritty mouth taste with an earthy flavor. These words are the ‘terre’ (french for place) that describe the chocolate and the flavors that swim in our mouths bumping into our sweet and salty taste buds.  The flavors pop in our mouths and our taste buds jobs are made easy purely responsible for sending messages to our vacation brain, so we may conjure up visuals of the tropical landscapes the samples of chocolate originate from.

Cacao bean and chocolate covered nibs

Of course, if you didn’t have the patience for all this nonsense and preferred to just eat your chocolate pieces and doodle on paper with crayons (like I said; no rock was left unturned) then Annabelle had a small following in another tent just for you nonconformists.

Meanwhile in the big top we traveled back in time and followed Michelle through chocolate’s historical journey from start to present day. Then we were given the secret DIY knowledge of transforming these cacao nibs into rich, creamy, melt in your mouth chocolate complete with kitchen appliance recommendations for the aficionados in our group.

The last bit of information we absorbed was what brought us here in the beginning; we now know which chocolate our taste buds have decided is the best from around the world.

For me it was the 70% Kallari “Red Leaf.” Forastero/Nacional, grown in Ecuador. I was happy to hear that it is also a very socially responsible production with a great story, another bonus to all the good news I am learning about chocolate!

Armed with facts and research to support their debate I believe our family favorite smoothie will be made more often this summer. Below is our combination of Ed’s Juice and Java’s; Funky Monkey and Molly of Glover St. Market’s; Energy Boost.

Cacao Nib Smoothie

2 Peeled Bananas

1/4 cup Cacao nibs

3 cups Almond milk

1/2 cup Almond Butter

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

liquid chocolate to taste (optional for sweetness)

Blend together adding more liquid depending on desired thickness


Have it cold: if you make too much or have left overs simply pour into a Popsicle mold and pop it in the freezer for a healthy summer treat.

Fact: Cacao has one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants of any food. Antioxidant levels are measured by Oxygen Radial Absorbance Capacity. Per 100 grams, cacao nibs have 95,000 compared to; broccoli 890, spinach 1,540, acai berries 5,500 and dark chocolate 13,120.

*source handout.

Aloha kakou!

Rachelle @ Caramelize Life

Canning Planning

As the heat comes on, canning planning kick~starts the garden inspiration.

Getting organized before the bounty begins is a great way of utilizing all the produce you can and taking pleasure in each step along the way.  Done lovingly and diligently, preserving foods can be one of the greatest joys in the kitchen.

Considerations: 1) your planned garden harvest,  2) a local grandmother or Master Gardener who can give you the best advice when you need it for preserving foods, 3) all your locations for gathering wild fruits and 4) what you’d like to search for by barter or perusing your Farmer’s Market for prime purchases.

Our local source for expert advice in the garden, conveniently called Local 98856, has posted an article this week on their top picks of plants to put in the garden right now, suitable for preserving fruits and veggies:  Our Favorites for Preserving.  The Local’s website shares highly useful and timely garden information on a weekly basis ~ it’s our expert source, aside from mothers and neighbors.

Beautiful Beats ~ ready for pickling early in the season

I make a goal each year of either growing, gathering or bartering all necessary ingredients for my canned food (aside from a few exotic spices).  Barter takes a little networking, a lot of talking about gardens and fruit, and perhaps an offering of your goods, but it is rewarding and sustainable for the community.  For all else, I hit the local farmer’s markets for organic goods.

Folks can be very grateful for a picker to maintain the health of their tree.  Some people aren’t in physical shape to pick the fruit anymore or just may not have the time.  If you put the word out, you might be amazed at the number of untended fruit trees out there just dripping with goodness.  Bringing children along to pick is an added bonus for the whole family.

Rhubarb is an early harvest for jams, chutneys and sauces.

On the Canning Planning Menu ~ my list usually begins with strawberries, asparagus, beans, beats, herbs and rhubarb.

With the strawberries ripe in the garden and the rhubarb taking off before most anything, strawberry-rhubarb jam, pie filling and chutney are prime choices at the top of the list.  Early spring also brings asparagus, so delicious pickled and preserved.

Beans ~ an early pickler for canning

Planting Possibilities Now for Early Canning:

~Fruit Chutneys such as rhubarb

~Herbs (basil for pesto, and for freezing or drying, basil, oregano, mint, rosemary….etc.)


~Pickled Asparagus (bountiful right now, see previous post: What’s For Dinner)

~Pickled Beans

~Pickled Beats

~Pie fillings (Strawberry or Rhubarb)

~Strawberry Jams, Jellies and Compotes

(When harvest is timely, we have recipes ready to post for all referenced here.)

Often by early to mid-summer, fresh herbs are ample.  I begin making pesto as bunches of basil are ready to snip.  If you’ve planted garlic the previous fall, the timing should be just right for also using your own fresh garlic in the pesto.  Pesto is preserved very well in small freezer batches.  (When it comes to harvest time, we’ll post some full proof pesto recipes:)

In warmer climates, processing your tomatoes can start as early as summer, but in our Methow Valley of the  North Cascades, it is a long wait for ripe ones.  Gauge when your harvest will be based on your climate and plan from there (see previous post, Spring Seedlings: Coast to Coast).

Tomatoes and tomatillos are key to canning in our family.  To satisfy our lust for spice, I make about four-five dozen quarts of salsa varieties each Fall.  The salsas are eaten fresh with morning burritos and casadillas, they go into baked mexican dinners and grace omelets, egg scrambles and sandwich spreads.  Despite planning for this amount of salsa and canning those many dozens, we still run out.  Thus, the canning planning begins now!

For a tried and true  Salsa Verde recipe to put up your tomatillos and jalapeños, read the previous article, Fresh Fish and Zesty Salsa Warm Up Winter Nights.

Tomatillo and Jalapeño Salsa Verde, Tomato-Cilantro Salsa and dried Cayenne Peppers.

Finally, a word about plums.  They often ripen early, and their versatility tends to be underestimated.  Plum jam is a must-have for my children and goes a long way for sandwiches, crepe fillings and bases for meat glazes.

Plum syrup is another winner: pureed, sweetened, cooked and canned, it is a simple and affordable alternative to other syrups for breakfasts and deserts.  I similarly can apricot syrup and rhubarb sauce, adding minimal sugar and simmering low to thicken (will provided recipes for these as well).

Plum Syrup, Apricot Nectar, Apple Sauce, Salsas, Chutneys & Jams

Last year a little neighbor child came knocking on the door as I had just finished canning the plum syrup.  I offered a little sample jar for his family.  Soon, a stream of neighbor children were knocking on the door, referencing the first child’s gift.  I believe our plum syrup made it to every household in the neighborhood that day.  What a joy!

It is also sweetly inspiring to make the list ~ and check it off as your garden grows.

Love from our kitchen garden to yours ~ Georgina @ Caramelize Life

NOTE:  See the Ball Blue Book of Canning for guaranteed base recipes ~ it’s all you’ll need.

Mutual Giving

Of all that I love of writing about food at Caramelize Life, topping the list is the opportunity for mutual giving.

When we began this venture of writing garden to table recipes from our heritage and kitchens, it was blissful in itself. Making life a little sweeter through cooking with family and friends is naturally full of joy.

Limoncello, made with love and sunshine by the Weymuller family

The happy bonus is sharing with all our wonderful readers and fellow writers across the world!  The very nature of cooking blogs invites us to support one and other.

In giving our ideas, feedback and support to each other, everyone benefits.  Rather than competition, it is collaboration ~ active, mutual giving that leads us all towards more knowledge and happy success.

A gift from Mama Rachelle ~ her home made vanilla extract

Sharing our knowledge and methods about food is as ancient as we people are. Rachelle and I are happy to have gleaned knowledge from our mothers, grandmothers and friends, and we’re purposefully sending out the secrets.

But in sharing with an extended network of food growers, chefs and producers, our joy and knowledge is multiplied more than we ever could have imagined.

Picking spring asparagus

Learning from Mama Gina how to make rhubarb sauce









Our connections as people are within the food we eat, and the way we feed our bodies creates our lives.  So, as we at Caramelize Life share of heritage, food, family and community, we invite you to feel the joy.

Here’s to growing bountifully, cooking beautifully and making life sweeter together!

Love from our kitchen to yours!  Georgina @ Caramelize Life

What’s for Dinner?

 Misty Fjord’s Wild Salmon

  Seasoned with garlic, onions, dill and olive oil.

  Olive tapenade, sun-dried tomatoes and pine nut orzo pasta.

 And fresh sautéed  garden asparagus.

A quick and easy dish that is balanced and scrumptious too!

Wild caught salmon is the best, both in flavor and nutrients. Having worked in the Alaskan fishing industry in my 20’s I know it’s not an easy job and am thankful to be able to stock up on quality salmon each season.

Our mountains are not quite close enough to the ocean and inlets so we stock our freezer like squirrels in the fall with all things good. That’s when I place an order with our neighbor Fran, owner of Misty Fjord Seafood who I’m pretty sure is actually Super Woman. I end up guesstimating how many filets and pieces of fish we’ll need until the next season, and if we end up with extra we have it smoked so that we can enjoy it on hikes with a little goat cheese and good bread.

If you’ve got freezer space I highly recommend stocking up. Having it on hand makes dinner a snap!


1 wild salmon fillet
3 pressed cloves of garlic
1 sliced onion
1 lemon (half sliced and half for juice)
a handful of asparagus spears
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil
1 teaspoon dill weed
3 tablespoons of quark, sour cream, mayo or LEMONAISE®
3 cups of orzo
2 tablespoons olive tapenade
sun-dried tomatoes (a jar or 9-10 from your pantry chopped)
1/4 cup of pine nuts
1/2 parmesan cheese (optional)
dash of white wine for sauteing

~preheat the oven to 400f

~Defrost the fillet in its packaging (it is recommended to do so in the refrigerator but under running water has worked in a pinch. You can save the water and use it to feed your plants).

~Next prep the garlic, onions and dill sauce

Dill sauce:
~combine the quark, sour cream or mayo with 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice, dill weed and mix. Omit the lemon if using LEMONAISE®
~Once defrosted place the fillet on an aluminum foil covered baking sheet for easier clean up.
~Drizzle olive oil onto the fillet, sprinkle dill weed and add slices of the onion, garlic and lemon (squeeze the slices just a bit) and cover with foil.
~Bake for 15-20 minutes checking for done-ness = when the salmon flesh turns to a light pink.

Now, prepare the orzo while the salmon is baking.
Orzo is quick and a favorite with our kids. To make it an all around hit I add a little color and flavor with sun-dried tomatoes, keeping it quick and easy I use a pre-made olive tapenade that I have on hand for easy appetizers. If you have time and can make your own I am sure you’ll be rewarded. Another crowd pleaser and healthy addition, is to add pine nuts.

Next, prep the asparagus. This is fun because it is fresh right now and in the backyard, easily gathered by the kids and they love it.

walking with scissors

~Once the asparagus is washed, then saute it with a little white wine until tender and set the asparagus aside.

~By the time the orzo is finished, your salmon should be done as well.
~warm plates if you want
~mix the olive tapenade, sun-dried tomatoes and pine nuts into the orzo and add the parmesan cheese.
~serve right away with a small dollop of dill sauce on top of the salmon.

serves 4-5

More salmon recipes here

Plan ahead
I love to make enough for leftovers. Extra orzo is great for lunches, add pesto to change it up or make it into a salad. It’s perfect hot or cold.
Leftover salmon is nice for morning egg scrambles, add chevre, chives and spinach for a healthy start.

Learn more
If you are interested as to why I choose wild salmon over farmed raised there are a number of reasons and it is important to know why and what you are putting into your body. I don’t think we can trust that someone else will be looking out for our best interests.  I feel it is important to educate oneself and spread the word on sustainable practices that benefit all. If your curiosity is piqued, then please check out the following links and make your own choice.

Why salmon is worth the fight- video

Salmon Aid

David Dobs describes the life of a wild salmon and the confusion between wild and farmed in his 2008 article in Eating Well named The Wild Salmon Debate  “He [the salmon] eats with an open mind—other fish, mollusks, and lots and lots of krill and other planktonic crustacea that have feasted on red algae. This diet turns his flesh pink and rich in omega-3 fatty acids.”

Now what’s for dessert?

Rachelle @ caramelizelife



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