I'll start with Saturday night's dinner. Halibut, Saffron rice and Chinese long beans.The halibut came from Trader Joe's. I seasoned it with salt, pepper, cayenne, basil, oregano, garlic and thyme. After heating up the skillet with some grapeseed oil I dredged the fish fillets through the seasoning mix and cooked them 3-4 minutes on each side.
The Chinese long beans were washed, sliced into 2-3 inch segments and gently steamed for 4 minutes then drained. In the same saute pan they were steamed in, I added grapeseed oil, 4 smashed garlic cloves, 5 dried red chili peppers and some crushed Szechuan peppercorns. Once the oil was fragrant I added the beans and sauteed over high heat until they were cooked through, about 3 minutes.
Meanwhile the saffron rice was busily cooking away on a back burner. Biscuit Boy was in charge of the rice. He prepared it by soaking about a 1/2 tsp of saffron threads in warm water. Meanwhile he sauteed some thinly sliced shallots in a pot. Once they were soft, he added the saffron infused water, salt and rice. Dinner in less than 30 minutes.
Next up was Thai Fried Rice. We made this about 2 weeks ago. We picked up some nice looking shrimp from the market along with some cashews, and fresh basil leaves. Three key ingredients for our fried rice.
To prepare this dish, we used 1 cup of uncooked rice. Cook with 2 cups of water. While the rice is cooking, peel and devein the shrimp, season with some salt and pepper and sautee. Set them aside when done. Next set aside about 1/2 cup of cashews, tear up about 1/2 cup of the basil leaves, crush a few dried chilis, slice some mushrooms, finely sliced about 2 cloves of garlic and dice some onion. Set everything aside.
When the rice is done, place it in a large skillet coated with some cooking oil. Add the cashews, chilis, garlic, onion, mushroms, soy sauce and fish sauce. Toss around until everything is well incorporated. Add the basil leaves, give it all a few quick stirs and place it in a serving bowl.
Scoop the fried rice into individual bowls, add some of the cooked shrimp and enjoy.
Finally we come to Steamed Mussels in Green Curry broth. First rinse off the mussels and remove any remaining beards. Check for any chipped, broken or open shells. Discard these.
In a large sautee pan, add green curry and coconut milk (we used premade green curry that we buy in small cans from any of the local Asian markets in the area). Bring to a gentle boil and add the mussels. Place a lid on the sautee pan and let them cook for about 5 minutes or until the shells have opened. Stir in some fresh basil leaves then spoon the mussels into a large bowl and pour the broth over the top. Serve with some nice crusty bread (for sopping up the broth).