As we sift back into our annual September routines, diligently pairing sweaters with boots, and jackets with scarves, I reminisce on those summer days when I wore my bathing suit and shorts into the evening, and could spend the whole day sunning on the beach. This weather went hand in hand with my relaxed and joyful mood, so I was thrilled this week to be reminded further of these care-free days, when my hair curled effortlessly from the salt and wind, by the continuing sunny and warm weather for the next few days!
So, in my enthusiasm I have decided to show excitement by bringing out my shorts again, and lazing in our sunny yard with my flip flops hanging off my toes.
My dog, thrilled to be outside with me, wags her stumpy tail at the turn of a page in my book, expecting me to be as sporadic as she, and jump up to throw the ball for her. Peeling my eyes from my book, hanging off the last sentence I've just read,
"In her secret garden..."
I see her dart around the rhododendron bush, and high-tail it down to the bottom of the garden where a small grey cat lurks timidly. They go off down the path, hidden behind the array of tangled branches and leaves, and for a few moments I am left alone before I need to call her back.
Enticing her with a favorite toy, a red frisbee disk, she bounds back up the hill and waits expectantly at my feet. At one point the disk lit up upon impact with the ground, drawing her near it whether or not she could see the flashing colors. Unaware by the toy's declining condition, she happily chases after the flying disk, speeding up as it hits the ground. The sound surprises her, as my weak throw causes it to land behind her as she flits happily around, mouth hanging open.
I laugh as she tries to pick it up, scraping the top of the frisbee with her claws in a digging motion and trying to flip it over so that she can grasp it in her jaws. She continues this endeavor for some time, pausing briefly only to glance at me expectantly.
And so she returns to her efforts. Finally, with just a small nudge of her nose, the frisbee flips, and she is able to grasp it to carry it back to me. Her little tail wags excitedly, and I imagine her saying,
"Look at me! Look at me!"
As she shows off her prize.
This sunny weather seems to have lifted everyone else's mood as well; even as I shopped this evening for dinner's ingredients people were jovial, exclaiming their enthusiasm in seeing their friends and neighbors, and with our brighter moods comes a brighter, sunnier evening.
Summertime lived on in my kitchen this evening, with this park picnic recipe.
Perfect for my busy schedule, I prepared components of this recipe before I went out for yoga (thought I would try to relax a bit) and left them in fridge to be cooked quickly when I came back.
Walnut Pan-Cooked Cod with Green Pea Mélange
Adapted from Gluten Free Girl's Pistachio Encrusted Salmon with Edamame Mash
Click here for printable version.
Before I was ready to cook, I prepared the Green Pea Mélange and the walnuts to store in the fridge.
1 1/2 c cooked green peas
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp gluten-free fish sauce
1/4 c grape seed oil, plus 1 tbsp for cooking
1 egg, beaten
1/8 c rice flour
2 cod fillets
In a blender, combine the green peas, grated ginger, rice wine vinegar, and fish sauce and blend until pureed, but still lumpy. Add the grape seed oil, and whirl until mixed. If it is still too thick, add some more oil or water to thin. Taste, and season with salt and pepper.
Pour the mix into a bowl or cup, and cover, setting it aside.
In the same blender, washed out and dried, pour in the walnuts and blend until finely chopped. Make sure the motor is stopped before it begins to turn to butter.
Set out three shallow bowls on your workspace, in one add the egg and beat, in the second sprinkle the flour, and in the third add the chopped walnuts.
Season the cod with salt.
In a frying pan, add 1 tbsp of grape seed oil, and turn to medium-high heat.
When hot, quickly dip the cod on both sides into the beaten egg, smothering it in the rice flour, and then transferring to the walnuts, coating the cod thickly.
Place the fillet in the pan, and repeat with the second piece. In the pan, sear the cod for approximately two-four minutes, or until slightly browned underneath. Then, flip both pieces and cook thoroughly, covering the pan with a lid for a faster cooking time.
Serve with the Green Pea Mélange, either on the side or spooned on top.
If you prepared the mélange some time before, it should be heated up in the microwave quickly, or on the stove top until simmering.
Also, when coating the cod in the walnuts, it didn't stick very well without a second plunge into the beaten egg, although in doing so, the different ingredients were mixed slightly!
Labels: cod, dinner, fish, gluten free, main, pea, walnut