Archive for August, 2009

Salmon Japonais 146

Salmon Japonais is inspired by a salmon dish my family and I experienced during our recent visit to Chicago’s Japonais, an up-scale, sophisticated, yet comfortable Japanese Restaurant. Each dish was a work of art.

We loved it so much that we ate there during our first night and again during our last evening. On both occasions, we ordered and savored Salmon Japonais, a succulent piece of salmon bathed in a light, sweet sauce with a touch of curry nestled on thinly sliced potatoes that melted like butter. The smoothness of of the flavors all meld together until the last chew, a gentle kick from the curry…And then the refreshing coolness from the orange slices that garnished the dish. Oh, yes and the pop of fish eggs (cavier) sprinkled sparingly throughout the dish. I know what you’re thinking. Yes, we blew the budget on this vacation!

We  arrived home from our trip exhausted, but I couldn’t wait to recreate this delightful experience. Our refrigerator and pantry were pretty bare except for some grapes, some frozen salmon, potatoes, and greens (we picked up earlier in the day, too tired to plan a meal), and a can of coconut milk.

I went searching for recipes that I thought would come close to the taste I wanted. I found Speedy Salmon in Coconut Sauce in Fran McCulliugh’s The Good Fat Cookbook that approximated the taste I wanted to duplicate sans oranges and caviar.

Salmon Japonais is inspired by a combination of my experience at Japonais and Fran McCulliugh’s recipe. This is one of the most delicious, nutritious, and quickest meals I ever cooked.

Salmon Japonais

Serves 3


2 wild Alaskan sockeye fillet of salmon, 12 oz. (defrost if frozen)

1 cup of coconut milk

1 medium potato

1 teaspoon of Indian curry



casserole dish with lid

1. Pre-heat oven 375°

2. Mix 1 teaspoon of Indian curry with 1 cup of coconut milk.

3. Thinly slice potato and line the bottom of the casserole dish. Gently salt.

4. Pour 1 cup of coconut curry milk over the potatoes.

5. Cover dish and bake for 20 minutes or until potatoes are soft.

6. Remove scales from the salmon skin. Wash and dry salmon.

7. Remove skin. Add salt and pepper to skin and baked in a separate dish until crispy. The crispy skin will be used to garnish the dish. Japonais used seaweed (nori) that was baked as the garnish. When crispy, cut into triangles.

8. After the potatoes are soft. Lay the salmon fillet on top of the potatoes.

9. Cover the fillet with the coconut-curry mixture.

10. Cover the dish and return to the oven for 3 minutes.

11. After 3 minutes, uncover and baste salmon.

12. Cover and bake for 3 more minutes.

13. With a fork, gently open the center of the salmon to make sure it is done (not quite opaque). Watch so that it’s not overcooked.

14. When done, cut salmon and serve on individual plates—potatoes on the bottom and salmon on top. Spoon coconut-curry mixture over the salmon.

14. Garnish each with a piece of crispy salmon skin or crispy nori, and very thin slices of oranges or grapes cut in half.


Modifications and suggestions: My daughter usually does not like to eat fish, but she loved Salmon Japonais. I’m glad because salmon is such a rich source of omega 3.

I lightly steamed bok choy and added it as another garnish. It complemented the color of the pink salmon.

Although fish skin and seaweed are commonly eaten in Asian cultures, you may omit the fish skin and nori.

I used grapes, because grapes were the only fruit in my fridge. The grapes gave the dish a refreshing element, but I liked the citrus a bit more.

Although the frozen salmon was delicious, I would like to try this recipe with fresh wild caught salmon next time.

My version of Salmon Japonais is a frugal meal made with what I had on hand is featured in Pennywise Platter Thursday in the Nourishing Gourmet.

Copyright 2009 by Nurturing Wisdom


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From the land of sun drenched summers, where sunlight bathes every object and colors vibrate comes Gazpacho Soup.

Refreshing Gazpacho Soup

Refreshing Gazpacho Soup

It was during one of my walks through the streets of Barcelona, Spain that I came upon this chilled soup at a local Spanish restaurant made with farm fresh vegetables. After my first spoonful, I knew I had to replicate this soup when I got home.

Today, each spoonful of this chilled, refreshing soup brings to mind the memory of the Iberian sun, the same unique summer sun that makes Sorolla paintings shimmer.

Gazpacho Soup is simple and economical to make. It is the perfect soup for summer when its ingredients are bountiful, and you’re yearning for something cool and refreshing. For an added boost in nutrition use organically grown vegetables from your local farmers’ market or from your own garden.

tomatoes 024

cubed and seeded cucumber (leave seeds if not mature) 028two stalks celery and leaves 027

sweet red pepper 025diced onions 036minced garlic 026

The vegetables for Gazpacho Soup only need to be roughly cut or sliced for the blended part of the soup. The blender or food processor does all the work! Well, except the red onions and garlic cloves. You’ll need to dice and chop a little more so that no one gets a chunk of onion or garlic in their soup.

If you’d like to add some texture to your gazpacho, reserve some of the red bell pepper, cucumber, celery, basil leaves, and cilantro. Set them aside for later. These need to be chopped a bit smaller.

I like to blend the vegetables that contain the most liquid first. The liquid makes it easier for the rest of the ingredients to liquify.

Blend four vine ripened tomatoes until liquidy. Add one half of a seeded cucumber and blend. Add celery, leaves included; half of a large sweet red pepper or one medium; two tablespoons of red onions; three cloves of garlic with shoots removed, diced. Blend.

basil 034cilantro 029lime 030

Cut or torn basil leaves; and three tablespoons of cilantro. Blend.

Add the juice of one lime to the blended mixture. Blend.

cucumber, celery, sweet red pepper chunks with cilantro and basil 038

extra virgin olive oil 035water lillies; gazpacho soup; crepes 035

In serving bowls combine diced red bell peppers, cucumber, and celery (reserved earlier).

Pour the blended mixture over the diced vegetables. Garnish with more diced vegetables, cilantro and basil.

Drizzle with extra virgin oil and hot sauce.

Salud!gazpacho soup  044

Gazpacho Soup

Serves 5-6


Reserve some cucumber, celery, sweet red pepper, cilantro, and basil for added texture and garnishing.

4 organic tomatoes

1 medium, organic cucumber

2 stalks celery with leaves

1 medium organic red sweet pepper

2 tablespoons of organic red onion or sweet onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, diced

Cut or torn cilantro and basil

extra virgin olive oil

hot sauce (cayenne )

extra virgin olive oil

1. Reserve some cucumber, celery, sweet red pepper chunks with cilantro and basil. These need to be chopped finer.

The blended portion of the soup only needs to be roughly cut.

2. Place roughly cut tomatoes in blender or food processor. Blend.

3. Add cucumber. Blend.

4. Add celery stalks and leaves. Blend.

5. Add sweet red pepper. Blend.

6. Add onion, garlic, cilantro, and basil. Blend.

7. Drizzle with hot sauce (to taste) and extra virgin olive oil.

8. Add more vegetable chunks if desired.

Modifications and suggestions: Serve with a side of crusty bread and cheese; place slices of crusty toasted bread or shrimp in the center of the soup; for protein types, add shrimp or sausage to center of soup.

Chill soup before serving. To get it extra cold, add ice cubes.

This is an easy and fun soup to make. Add more or less of each vegetable. Keep tasting to adjust the proportions to your taste.

Copyright 2009 by Nurturing Wisdom

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Esempi di moneta locale che non appaiono come ...
Image via Wikipedia

In recent years I have been flying back and forth from the east coast to the west coast quite frequently to visit loved ones. As a result, I’ve accumulated many frequent-flyer miles. It was great having free flights, but eventually the frequent- flyer miles started to expire. Afterall, how many times could I go flying around the country?  I have responsibilities —my family, work, this blog, etc.

To make sure I received the credit that was due me—my diligence in using only the Visa card associated with the airline that gave me the points for free flights and only flying with a specific airline even though it was a hassle at times to transfer in Atlanta during every trip when other airlines had more direct routes, I decided to make use of my free flights by giving them away instead of letting them go to waste.

On one occasion, the deadline for a free flight was fast approaching. I didn’t have any plans for traveling in the near future, so I decided to give away my free ticket to someone who couldn’t pay for the price of a plane ticket. I wanted to make the plane ticket a gift to someone who needed it but could not pay for it. I didn’t want any money or favors in return. I was just happy that all my hard work for the free flight could free someone of the burden of having to pay for a flight they were unable to pay for.

brush drawing on blue primed paper
Image via Wikipedia

I was having my quiet time with God this morning. I started out by thanking God for all His blessings. I thanked Him for His salvation, His love. I sat and just praised Him for who He is. I then prayed for all the prayer requests my friends and family had requested via the telephone, e-mails, and in person.

After I made these prayer requests known to God on behave of my loved ones and friends, it became very quiet. I sat and sat quietly. Waiting, waiting upon God.

It was during that quiet moment that the the metaphor for giving my frequent-flyer miles away to someone who could not pay for his own flight came to me. The Holy Spirit made the connection for me—

God in the same way has paid for my freedom now and heaven in the future. He paid the price for my sins just like I paid the price for someone’s free plane ticket. I did all the work ahead of time so I could give someone a free plane ticket. God in the same way did all the work by sending His Son to die on the cross for me so that I could go free. All I had to do was to accept the free plane ticket. Spiritually speaking, all I need to do is to acknowledge and receive the gift, what God has done for me that I could not do for myself. The price was too high. I had no ability to pay for my sins, For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23). God did it for me out of His love for me. What a wonderful God!

It’s wonderful to pray in the Spirit. It is that quiet moment during prayer that God speaks to me. Sometimes it’s an audible voice. Sometimes it’s a knowing that something else is happening that is beyond space and time. Sometimes it is a name of someone I’ve only met once who is in trouble and needs God’s intervention. I never know what the problem is until after the prayer is over, and I contact the person.  Sometimes it’s the recalling of a past event in my life that needs healing and forgiveness. Sometimes it is direction for my life. Sometimes it is a warning. It is always a knowing that the Holy Spirit is at work. It is beyond my words. It is always refreshing, peaceful, and calm afterwards. I am in timelessness.

At the time that prayer becomes praying in the Spirit is when it is no longer my requests made known to God, but God’s requests being made known to me. It is an amazing, awesome event when prayer becomes listening to God.

How about it? Would you like to accept this free gift that God is offering you? A relationship with Him through Jesus Christ?

I’d like to pray with you.

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