Sunday, February 17, 2013

Simple, Elegant, & Easy Dinner for Two - Salmon with Capers, White Wine and Lemon, Grilled Asparagus and Roasted Potatoes

This dinner looks impressive, fills you up like something your parents cooked for you on a special occasion, and is all done in an hour with very little active work and even less clean up. It also only calls for 10 ingredients, including salt, pepper and olive oil.

Foil grilling fish is THE best. Take fish filet, add flavor, seal up, bake at 400 for 10 to 15 minutes, and you're done. In general, I line almost all my baking sheets with foil or parchment paper before cooking. Way less clean up afterwards... just strip off the foil, toss it in the trash, and put that baking sheet back in the cupboard.

But first, we'll need to start with the potatoes.

Classic Roasted Potatoes 
- 3/4 lb yukon gold potatoes
- 3 tbs olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic
- salt and pepper

No need to peel, just rough chop yukon gold potatoes into quarters or less. Drizzle on the olive oil, mince the garlic, add salt and pepper to taste and toss. Lay out on a tin foil lined sheet. Bake for 45 - 60 minutes, flipping them over half way so you can get them nice and brown all around.  That's it. These will make your house smell like a steakhouse and you're welcome.

Now, we'll prep the salmon and asparagus. A lot of people do them in one packet together, but I am not a fan of lemon with asparagus, so I do them in separate packets.

Simple Roasted Asparagus
- asparagus
- 1 clove garlic
- olive oil
- salt and pepper

Seriously. That's all you need. Asparagus is nature's fanciest vegetable. Just let it be itself. These directions apply to whatever the size a bunch of asparagus you buy at the grocery store tends to be. Snap off the ends. They'll naturally snap at the tough bottom part you don't want to eat. Now drizzle olive oil on top, about 1 - 2 tbs., add a large clove of mixed garlic to the mix, then toss and add salt and pepper to taste. Am I repeating myself? Yes, because you can pretty much make everything delicious with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. If your salt and pepper aren't freshly ground, shame on you.

Now that they're prepped, wrap them up in tin foil like a Christmas present and stick them on the oven for 10 - 15 minutes. Same as you're going to do with the salmon. Keep scrollin'.

Salmon with Capers, Wine and Lemon 
- two 4-6 oz salmon filets
- 1.5 tbs olive oil
- 1.5 tbs white wine
- 2 tbs capers
- 2 cloves garlic, garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 tbs juice of a lemon
- 2 slices of lemon

Here comes the most work you'll do all night, after trying not to burn your fingers while flipping those potatoes during their half time. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, white wine, lemon juice, capers, garlic, salt and pepper and stir.

Coat the salmon filets on both sides with the  mixture, dumping whatever it leftover over the top. Top each piece of fish with a slice of lemon, and wrap it up in a foil packet. Pop in the 400 degree oven you've already got going with the asparagus alongside. Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on the size and thickness of your filets.

That's it. Throw away your foil, but the one bowl you got dirty in the dishwasher, and enjoy with a bottle of wine.

Oh you fancy, huh?