Thursday, October 26, 2023

ChezCindy: Spice Rubbed Salmon with Honey Roasted Vegetables


This lovely salmon dinner comes together in less than 30 minutes and has minimal cleanup.  A dish elegant enough for company or for a weekday family dinner.  How great is that?  

The spice rub is a delicious compliment to the salmon, but the real star is the drizzle of honey over the fish and the vegetables at the completion of cooking.  Don't skimp on the full amount of honey called for in the recipe or it just won't have the same pizzaz.  The vegetables can be switched up, with the photo showing carrots and asparagus.  I have also used cut zucchini or Brussels sprouts cut in half or quarters, along with the carrots.  It is key to cut the vegetables as noted in the recipe so that the salmon and the vegetables cook in the same amount of time.  

Spice Rubbed Salmon with Honey Roasted Vegetables
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 6-ounce portions of salmon
2 small zucchini (cut into 1-inch pieces) or 1/2-pound asparagus (cut into 2-inch pieces)
2 medium carrots, peeled, thinly cut into 1/4-inch rounds
1 large clove garlic, minced
5 teaspoons honey

Spice Rub for the Salmon
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano

Serves 4

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Prepare a large sheet pan with sides by lining it with foil.  Drizzle 1 tablespoon of oil over the foil, rubbing it evenly to distribute the oil.  Set aside.

Make the spice rub for the salmon by combining the salt, smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, dry mustard, and oregano in a small bowl.  Stir to combine.  Set aside.

Place the portions of salmon, skin-side down, onto the center of the prepared sheet pan, leaving space between each piece, about 1/2 inch apart.  Drizzle 1 tablespoon of oil over the salmon pieces.  Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the spice rub over each piece of salmon. 

Prepare the vegetables as noted in the ingredient list.  It is important to cut the vegetables as described so that they cook in the same amount of time as the salmon.  Place the cut vegetables, the minced garlic, and 1 teaspoon of the spice rub into a large bowl.  Drizzle the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over the vegetables, stirring to combine.  Arrange the vegetables around the salmon, but not covering the salmon.  

Place the sheet pan with the salmon and vegetables into the hot oven on the bottom rack, roasting for 15-18 minutes, depending on the thickness of the salmon.  The internal temperature of the salmon should be 125 degrees or feel firm to the touch.  Remove the pan from the oven.  Drizzle the honey over the salmon and the vegetables.  Serve hot.  

Thursday, October 12, 2023

ChezCindy: White Chocolate Oreo Truffles


One bite of these White Chocolate Oreo Truffles and all I could manage to say was "wow".  I was speechless and a bit surprised.  I'm not a big fan of white chocolate as it is too sweet for me.  The overall flavor of the truffle achieved from the use of the crushed Oreo cookies, cream cheese, plus a bit of sea salt yielded the perfect bite.  

The recipe is adapted from Jessie Sheehan's Snackable Bakes cookbook.  I have referenced Ms. Sheehan's book in a previous post for the most wonderful peach and vanilla muffins.  Her book is full of so many recipe gems for quick and delicious baking.  Highly recommended.  

The recipe is quite simple and fun to make.  Kids and young bakers will have an easy time creating the truffles.  With minimal finesse, the truffle treats can step in for an impressive make-ahead dessert.  

White Chocolate Oreo Truffles
4 ounces Philadelphia cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
18 Oreo cookies
2 cups white chocolate chips
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Makes about 20 truffles

Place a large sheet of parchment paper onto a large sheet pan.  Set aside.

Add the cream cheese, salt, and vanilla in a large bowl, using a fork, mix together.  Place the cookies into a resealable plastic bag, zip to close.  Cover the bag containing the cookies with a dish towel.  Crush the cookies with a rolling pin until fine crumbs form.  Remove 2 tablespoons of crumbs, setting aside in a small bowl to save for decorating the top of the truffles.  Transfer the remaining cookie crumbs to the bowl with the cream cheese mixture.  Use a rubber spatula to thoroughly combine the crumbs with the cream cheese mixture.  

Use a tablespoon measure to scoop out 1 tablespoon of the cookie mixture.  Use your hands to form into balls.  Place the truffle balls on the prepared sheet pan.  Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes until chilled and firm.

While the truffle balls are chilling, melt the white chocolate and the oil in a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (a double boiler), stirring with a rubber spatula to combine.  Carefully remove the bowl of melted chocolate from the pan, setting onto a towel on the counter.  

Drop each chilled truffle ball, one at a time, into the melted chocolate.  Use a fork to coat and to lift the truffle allowing the excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl.  It is helpful to drag the coated truffle along the rim of the bowl to remove some of the excess chocolate.  Place the dipped truffle onto the sheet pan, immediately sprinkling a few crumbs of the reserved cookie crumbs over the truffle.  Repeat with each truffle ball.  Rewarm the white chocolate if it starts to harden while dipping the truffle balls.

Serve the truffles at room temperature.  Keep the remaining truffles in an airtight container in the refrigerator, bringing to room temperature to enjoy.