Brussels and Shitake Mushrooms in Mirin and Sake with Gingered Broiled Salmon

Cooking with spirits is this months theme for RecipeRedux. Choosing just one recipe for this post was a tough one. Then I remembered the first time I tasted mirin, just a dash used in some Jasmin rice  and the choice was easy. Just a tablespoon or two of this special Japanese cooking wine transforms boring foods into a slightly sweet and complex creation.

We had new carpet installed last week which meant a flurry of furniture and nick naks flying in all directions. My entire bedroom was shoved onto the back porch, the contents of the master closet thrown into the bathtub {note to self, declutter closet!} Who knew we had so much junk? The rest of the house was stacked on top of each other and shoved into the kitchen. I took the dog and kids out for most of the day so I didn't witness the chaos but a week later, I'm still finding things in very odd places and not finding other things at all such as my camera!!!!

I've searched the house and my poor camera is nowhere to be found. Let's just hope it didn't end up in the garage because  that's where things go to be forgotten and rot.

Camera-less, I had to take these pictures with my iPhone as if you couldn't tell. They didn't look so bad on my phone but when uploaded them to my computer I was very disappointed, ick. iPhones may take great shots of the kids at the park and and decent selfie snaps but they do not do food photography any favors!

Too bad because this was a fabulously lip smacking meal. The sweet Japanese cooking wine really dialed the brussels and shitake side dish to a whole new level! Even picker eater numero tres gobbled them all up and even asked for seconds! The brussels went perfectly with this broiled salmon marinated in freshly grated ginger and Chinese black vinegar.

I added shallots and thinly sliced Thai chilies to the sprouts at the end of sautéing them and then poured in the mirin while scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze all the browned bits. 

Finding a good quality mirin is really important for better flavor and avoiding the added sugars and corn syrup found in most of the bottles found in grocery stores. "Cheap" mirin is often simply sake with corn syrup, but hon-mirin is a traditional sweetener made from sweet rice and koji. It adds a wonderful depth of flavor.  Mitoku's Mikawa miring was recommend to me and, according to what I've read is either the only or one of the only makers still using traditional methods. A bit of salt is added in order to be able to import it into the US. Eden makes a natural mirin with regular rice which is pretty good. Mirin is slightly expensive, but  only a little is needed in recipes and it goes a long way. You can find the Mikawa mirin online at Simply Natural and Amazon. I didn't get it in time for this post but I'm looking forward to it to add in rice, seafood dishes and sweet and sour soups. 

I have got to find my camera!!!

You Will Need:
2 cups of baby brussel sprouts, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
1 cup shitake mushrooms wiped clean, stems removed and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons sesame oil (not toasted)
1 small shallot, thinly sliced
1 small Thai chili pepper, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons mirinsesame seeds for garnish

Preheat a good quality sauté pan over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add oil, let heat up for a minute then add brussel sprouts (make sure they are dry before adding to hot oil!). Carefully, shake the pan to toss the brussels and coat them in the oil. Let them sit and re shake the pan every minute or so. After about 3 minutes, add the shallots and the mushrooms, stir to combine. Cook an additional 2-3 minutes being careful not to over cook.
Pour in the mirin while using a wooden spoon to quickly scrape off the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. reduce heat to medium and let the mirin cook down a bit. Do not cover pan. Add chilies if using. After a minute or two, remove pan from heat. Serve immediately. 

To see what all of the other Recipe Redux members came up with to spike their foods click the links below.


An Entire Summer's Worth of Giveaway's! #giveaway

I've got a few fun giveaways for you today! This summer has been a whirlwind of activities with the kids shoved into my days off from work. Living in Phoenix means it's way too hot to spend more than a few minutes outside unless you're in the pool. We've been hitting up some museums and indoor play parks that are scattered around the valley as well as morning KID movies at Harkins {popcorn and jelly bellies for breakfast anyone?}.


Blackberry and Peach Sparkling {Camping} Sangria #SundaySupper

It's July (in case you didn't know) which means it's really. freaking. hot. here in Phoenix (in case the obvious eludes you) which means it is officially time to get the heck out of the desert (duh). I'm counting the days until we can go up north and watch the temperature gage in the car drop down into the 70's. Ahhhhhh...... Luckily, "up north" is only about 3 hours away so coolness is within our grasp and I'm not one to not grasp at opportunities when they are shoved in my face.

perfect to take camping, on a picnic or to the beach!


Banana Split Popsicles {sugar free & healthy}

Inspiration for today's post comes from the fact that is 113F out and getting. even. hotter. The fact that it doesn't rain here in Phoenix makes me wonder how the hell so many idiots people decided to make this their home. It's a mystery..... and I'm Native..... idiot.


Melon and Prosciutto Arugula Salad with Strawberry Balsamic Vinegar #SundaySupper

Do you like my new blog design? I'm so excited! I've been on the fence for ever about upgrading my old school template that I've had for years. Yet something nagged me every time I went to purchase a professional design about spending money on a hobby. Also, I have spent countless hours designing and editing and re editing and redesigning my {old}  blog. It was kind of my baby, granted it had the face only a mother could truly love.

Alas, I came across an amazingly talented graphics and web designer named Dana Fox of Envye. Her multitude of web designs and graphics were just what I was looking for and at a price that wouldn't take money away from my children's college fund (although child number 1 kind of ruined the whole ride on my parents shoulders through his freshmen year of college while I slack off more than fungus on a rock deal for the rest of the darlings) but we won't talk about that.

There are still a few fun features that I am working on like a Photo Recipe Page and cuter side titles and organization but I'm pretty thrilled with my clean, updated look, however simple and late to the game it may be. Simple is exactly how I roll. Name of the blog Yo  {missing Breaking Bad......}

Onto picnicky goodness. I have to say this is probably without a doubt the crazy easiest and also most surprisingly delicious recipes I've ever made. I got up at an un-Godly hour this morning to go to work and saved a life via a total knee replacement and yet another by assisting in the removal of a bum gall bladder. Afterwards, I managed to drag myself to the grocery store in the 110F disgusting heat, talk myself out of going Cost Plus Market to purchase a melon baller, picked up a couple of melons and some prosciutto and then came home to take a 2 hour nap (don't judge) and still throw together this salad.

It's that simple.


The Ultimate Summer { #fourthofJuly } Roundup.

from beach totes and sunglasses to picnic treats and beach games, I gotcha covered.

My must have summer {4th of July} Picks!

These colorful Wow Rackets are just the thing for outdoor fun! They make a   booming  noise whenever they hit the included ball or birdie, they're just the thing for noisy, far-flung fun.



PICOBLAT : What you need to bring to your next picnic! #PicnicGame

Somebody told me that today was the halfway marker of summer on the calendar. That someone has also has only lived in The Valley of the Sun for exactly 3.5 months. Ummm,  did the nickname "The Valley of the Sun" not clue you in? I was sorry to burst his shiny, happy yet clueless bubble but summer unofficially or not starts in mid April and ends at the very tail end of October here in Phoenix. Prepare yourself.


Red Chile Shredded Chicken Tacos. How to win over your man's stomachand steal his heart #SundaySupper

I had all intentions of writing a mushy gushy, what a great guy my husband is post for Father's Day. That is until I calmly excused myself from the dinner table and stated that I needed to make sure my Sunday Suppers Father's Day post was up to par and ready to post and said dear husband stated, "You still need to finish it? What have you been doing in there all afternoon?"  The nerve.

I suppose I'll forgive him (shhh, don't tell him that ;) seeing as that he's a pretty amazing guy and an even more amazing dad to our 4 rug rats (teenager included). I'll skip all the mushy gushy and just post 2 of my favorite pictures/moments of my love being the wonderful father that he is.


Shitake, Crimini and Shrimp Spring Rolls

“By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by The Mushroom Council and am  eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.”

Have you ever wanted to eat more veggies and less meat but didn't know how or maybe thought it would be bland and boring? Swap it or Top it!  can help you with tons of ways to incorporate mushrooms in place of meat. It's my favorite way, next to beans to add substance and flavor to any meal. Simply swap at least half or more of the meat called for in your recipe, whether it be ground beef, chicken or seafood and substitute it with chopped or minced mushrooms. The great thing about mushrooms is there are dozens of varieties with a wide range of flavors to compliment any dish! From Asian foods to South Western I add mushrooms for flavor, moisture and vitamin content, not to mention that they drastically reduce the amount of saturated fats and calories when compared to meat.


DIY Mini Magnet Terrarium

Happy Friday friends! I wish I could say that I have the weekend off but alas I'm headed in to work tomorrow to save lives one icky gallbladder at a time. Not a very glamorous job but at least it's near freezing in the operating room. Next week I have 5 days off starting on Wednesday and we are headed up to Northern Arizona to stay in my in-laws cabin. I can't wait to get out of this stinking heat! I seriously don't think I can make it to August, actually it doesn't really cool down until the very end of October here, ughh.

I wanted to share this lovely DIY mini magnet terrarium with you. Easy to put together and a super cute and unique accent on your fridge. I know I would love to have these arranged on my fridge instead of clippings and doodles for a change.  Not that I don't love the kids doodles ;)

DIY Mini Magnet Terrarium (via http://cladandcloth.com/)
I’ve got some cool news!  I’ve been selected to create a DIY kit for Darby Smart!  I’m still working with them to create the kit but I’ll let you know as soon as it’s available.  In the meantime, I got a box just to see how it felt to open…


Cauliflower Fried Rice with Spring Veggies and Chives

Weekday dinner just got exciting in a big way. If you like Chinese food you are going to love this healthy version of Fried Rice. It has all of the yummy components of traditional Fried Rice minus the rice. 

Rice is most likely a pantry staple in most homes used as a starchy side next to or with veggies and meat of some sort or as a 'filler' for a vegetarian meal. Debatably, rice, especially processed white rice really isn't a healthy food to eat and has several downfalls to it's few qualities. For instance, and I'll keep it super short so I don't bore you (more than I already am?) white rice has been waaaay over processed and completely stripped of any nutritional value, enough so that the FDA requires that it be "enriched" or "fortified" with vitamins and minerals.


Home Made Sour Dough English Muffins {How to make sour dough starter}

I'm pretty sure I can not get any lazier at this point. It's only a couple of weeks into summer (unofficially summer begins in March here in Phoenix IMHO) and the triple digits are making me tired and cranky. Even a trip to the store gives my such a bad headache I have to lay down for 20 minutes when I get back. Crazy. You'd think I would have gotten accustomed to the heat after living here for 30 some odd years. Nope and nope.

I did manage to make a quick batch of sour dough English muffins the other day for breakfast and decided they are my new favorite thing. The smell of sour dough baking is almost as good as that first bite into the warm bread. Almost.

 photo copyright.jpg
blogger template by envye