Saturday, September 23, 2006

Strokin' Ye Ole Ego

I love teachers. Seriously LOVE them! Not only are they ready to piranha-swarm any food you lay out for them like it was their last meal but they will compliment you when they come up for air. It can really go to a person's head when you have people saying, "Oooh! Who made this? I'll bet it was Nerissa!" That's what I heard at the last potluck luncheon we had at the Friday workshop.

Potluck luncheons are fairly common in our corner of the world if a workshop is at hand. There's a variety of foods brought every time but salmon presence is particular evident. Everything from spreads to the latest batch of salmon from the smoke house made regular appearances. In this season and on this coast we are spoiled rotten with salmon. So, on Friday, who was I to change anything? I had a yen for a holiday treat gleaned from my grandmother's recipes so I treated everyone to it. With all the cream cheese in it, it wouldn't be wise to eat it all by myself anyways ;-)

It is seen here without the nut decorations but we have staff with severe allergies (sucks to be him). However, sans the nuts I found a great opportunity to use my new dishes which I got for a song.

Salmon Log

2 tins Pacific Salmon (7 1/2 oz.)drained of most its liquids
8 oz Philadelphia Cream Cheese
1 tbsp Horseradish
dash Lemon Juice
1/4 tsp Liquid Smoke
1 tbsp green onion

Mix all ingredients together until well blended. It is best when made the night before serving. We've put it in decorative moulds or chilled it in bowls. You can shape it into a log hence the name. Garnish with walnuts and chopped parsley. Serve with crackers, toast points, a spoon ;-)


That's it! It's really easy with lots of yummy comfort food goodness. I like it best on Saltines or Melba toast.

Monday, September 18, 2006

5 Foods To Eat Before You Die

Four score and seven years ago I was sent a meme... I'm just getting to it now. I do apologize to all those who tagged me for the 5 Things to Eat Before You Die meme for the long wait. Bless you, Bonnie, Cyndi and Jasmine for your patience.

Narrowing down foodly perfection isn't easy. And sometimes the best food in one's eyes isn't necessarily exotic or rare. Often it's the food we desire in the moments of comfort. We wonder why everyone doesn't love it or has not yet experienced it. I thought of foods that changed my view of the world and the way I eat.

My list is as follows:

1) Wind-dried Pacific salmon flesh and sun-dried kelp with a dipping sauce of Nass Valley ooligan-fish grease. I know it's rather specific but of the three kinds of ooligan grease I know, Nass grease has better flavour. This suggestion really has ocean written all over it. Each one has a unique flavour but together they are better than the sum of their parts.

2) Foie Gras. This blew my mind more than once. The taste experience, the texture, everything about it is so overwhelming that it defies better words to describe it. And it tastes even better with cooked fruit. Buttery and sweet, it's a great treat but make sure your gallbladder is prepared.

3) Thin-skinned green eating apples taken right off the tree after it has been warmed by the afternoon September sun. I know, I know... very specific again. You have to trust me. By the afternoon in September, the apple is a perfect temperature to release every nuance of sweetness and yet still retain a bit of a sour edge.

4) Duck. This is not your average poultry meat but it isn't so difficult to find. The breast really is the best part, I think. Cooked well, it will make your toes curl in pleasure. I did, however, cook a duck recently. I would be hard-pressed to find a part that wasn't lovely to taste.

5) Dragon-eyes (Long-an): These odd little fruits are an experience unto themselves. Borne on their branches like bark-covered grapes, you can easily peel off the skin to reveal a translucent litchi-type flesh. The best ones have a perfume that takes a joyride through your sense. There is a large black marble sized seed inside the flesh but it gives a cool look to the fruit and makes the name understandable. They do rather remind me of the eyes on Oriental dragons--a black dot encircled in white. Bite into one and find out for yourself.

Gosh... There are so many more things. Five only? This really sucks.

Just a word about my disappearance. I am sorry it took so long to get back on track. With some things I really have been bogged down but some of it wasn't entirely just that. I beg forgiveness because of two things. I kinda lost the steam to blog in the last while and was quite delinquent. I didn't feel any creative juices flowing in the food department because I was spending so much of it in school. I also got satellite... and, um, errr... the Food Channel. I've been watching food being made instead of making it when I had spare moments. This will change promptly.