Dishes and Wishes

Recipes and Culinary Commentary

About Dishes and Wishes

Dishes and Wishes will capture my dishes and those I dream of  making. My cuisine is international, low-fat, and usually vegetable-based. A former vegetarian slowly emerging from the cruciferous side, I’ve come to embrace charcuterie. But that was easy. (Unless it was moldy beef jerky, in which case…) Cooking meat is something different altogether, and at times it vexes me, but every recipe published here will be foolproof for fellow recovering vegetarians or kitchen neophytes. I studied comparative politics, a subject that also describes my approach in the kitchen. Though the mention of “fusion” sends me reeling for many reasons, my spice cabinet reflects my passion for far-flung flavors. Comfort me not with apples but Bombay street food, Turkish mezze, and Georgian kidney beans.

Lucky for you, I’m stationed in the culinary hinterlands, without access to any ethnic marts (save for Portuguese), so the ingredients I use are mostly from a handful of supermarkets. I do love my ingredients, so sometimes only low blood-sugar comes between me and sourcing ingredients. But hey, love makes you do strange things, and for me that might mean three supermarkets in one trip. There are certainly worse things you might do for love.


2 thoughts on “About Dishes and Wishes

  1. Salmon bores me. Pacific, Atlantic, wild, ( ( ( sigh ) ) ). I prefer steaks to fillets for the flavor, but my wife hates playing Milton Bradley’s Operation to get the bones out. I used to make a slow-roast, asparagus-puree-cream-sauce dealie that I found on Beyond Salmon, but it bores too. Can you suggest a great way to enliven the fish, which I only really eat now as sashimi?

    • Salmon and many other fishes blossom in a Provençal sauce. Prepare a sauce of chopped fresh tomatoes (big or small), half a diced red onion, capers, deli-quality olives if you have them –preferably seeded, minced garlic to taste, fresh basil, fresh parsley (one will do in a pinch), some herbs d’Provence or Italian seasonings, half a lemon, salt, fresh ground pepper, maybe some cayenne or chili flakes if you want some heat (I’d recommend Aleppo), olive oil, and maybe a tad of vinegar. Rinse and pat dry the fish. Season with salt and pepper. (The French would use finely ground white with nearly all fishes… but that’s not my style.) Marinade in a large plastic bag or container turning a few times for at least 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can season the fish in olive oil, herbs, some dry white wine, and garlic instead of adding the tomato mixture then. Do as you please.

      Pour some white wine in a large enough oven proof dish. Add fish fillets. Top with tomato mixture. Broil until deepest part of fish flesh is bright (if salmon) and just firm. Depending on the size of the fish, it will take at least 15 minutes or so. Keep vigilance as overcooked fish is not ideal.

      Great accompaniments: a killer greens or veg salad like celeriac, cream, and coriander salad in the Greek style; curried couscous; a nice soup dish. Must have some good bread on hand. In addition, this would be great with linguine and mussels.

      This sauce is also great on chicken. Have you ever done a chimichurri?

      This is making me hungry.

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