Saturday, January 9, 2010

Cooking Night with Caro

Phew!  I just got back from a whirlwind trip through the Northeast.  I started in upstate New York with my family for the Christmas holiday, then headed down to New York City.  From New York I traveled north to Boston to reunite with some of my college friends.  Look for more posts on tons of great, gluten free eats in all three places soon.

But first I'd like to begin my winter break catch up with one of my favorite nights from my travels.  My friend Carolyn and I decided to cook dinner for our friends in Boston; her sister Sonia recommended a recipe that we thought was relatively simple.  The recipe was for a coconut lemongrass broth with salmon.

Here are the ingredients.  See the bottom of this post for the ingredients along with the full recipe.

Coconut milk lemongrass broth with salmon

1 fillet salmon, about 5 oz
2 handfuls baby spinach leaves
½ cup sliced carrot
2 shallots, minced
2 garlic, minced
1 inch ginger, mined
2 lemongrass stalks
2-3 inches galangal, peeled
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 cup coconut milk
2½ cups vegetable stock
1 tablespoon oil




We assembled all of the necessary ingredients save for the galangal.  Nowhere in Boston could we find galangal.  We decided to forge ahead without it while crossing our fingers that our guests wouldn't notice the difference.  For the coconut milk, we used A Taste of Thai's lite coconut milk because it was marked gluten free.  I've written about how happy I've been with A Taste of Thai's other gluten free products, so we decided it would be a good idea to use the company's products again in concocting our soup.


Our first attempt at making the recipe didn't go so well... and by that I mean it was an utter disaster.  Neither of us were prepared for the fast pace of cooking that the recipe required.  Luckily, Jenny showed up and insisted that we open some wine to calm our nerves.  Wine went a long way towards making this recipe a success.


Overall, the recipe was very simple to make with a little preparation.  Before beginning to cook for the second time, we prepared all of the ingredients.  While you might be saying "Duh," Caro and I are not quite Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse.  Far from it.  Have you heard of the show "Worst Cooks in America"?  Well I won't speak for Caro, but I most certainly deserve a spot on that show.

Here is the full recipe:
1) Heat the oil in a saucepan at medium heat.  Saute the minced shallots until caramelized and then add garlic and ginger.  Stir for about 1 minute.  Take the bottom part of the lemongrass and bruise it - I use a pestle.  If the galangal is larger, cut it into 2.  Put in the lemongrass, the galangal and fish sauce.  Stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Put in the vegetable stock.  Bring to a boil and then let it simmer at a lower heat for about 20 minutes.

2) Pour in the coconut milk and continue to simmer for about 5 minutes.  Cut the salmon fillet into 1-inch cubes.  Put the aslmon cubes in the broth to let it poach.  When the salmon becomes opaque, throw in the spinach.  Stir gently and switch off the heat.  Serve immediately.
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Overall, the soup was a big success.


Jenny and Ted told us that they loved the soup.  Of course they could have been saying that just so as not to hurt my feelings, along with Caro's, but Caro and I both genuinely enjoyed this simple, easy to make soup.


Jenny also brought over a great, gluten free salad for us to enjoy.

Do you love it or do you love it?
- - -
Coconut milk lemongrass broth with salmon
Ingredients:
1 fillet salmon, about 5 oz
2 handfuls baby spinach leaves
½ cup sliced carrot
2 shallots, minced
2 garlic, minced
1 inch ginger, mined
2 lemongrass stalks
2-3 inches galangal, peeled
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 cup coconut milk
2½ cups vegetable stock
1 tablespoon oil



Directions:
1. Heat the oil in a saucepan at medium heat. Saute the minced shallots until caramelized and then add garlic and ginger. Stir for about 1 minute. Take the bottom part of the lemongrass and bruise it - I use a pestle. If the galangal is larger, cut it into 2. Put in the lemongrass, the galangal and fish sauce. Stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Put in the vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and then let it simmer at a lower heat for about 20 minutes.

2. Pour in the coconut milk and continue to simmer for about 5 minutes. Cut the salmon fillet into 1-inch cubes. Put the salmon cubes in the broth to let it poach. When the salmon becomes opaque, throw in the spinach. Stir gently and switch off the heat. Serve immediately.

Serves 2


1 comment:

Kathy said...

This sounds like it would be quite good. Fast to make too. Glad you
enjoyed your trip so much.