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Wonderful summer deserves great food

Posted: August 28, 2013 - 4:53pm

Our summer has been wonderful, filled with sunshine and warm temperatures, beautiful flowers, visitors, fishing and a family wedding. On July 20, we were happy to welcome Alyssa Prince into our family as the wife of our son David Robl. She is bright, beautiful, thoughtful, fun and just a delightful young woman. I am tickled to have a daughter.

Their wedding day could not have been more perfect. The sun shone down on the outdoor ceremony while 120 guests witnessed the Other Fisherman uniting them in marriage. Fireweed swayed and tufts of cotton drifted on a warm breeze. A bright blue sky with puffy clouds, dramatic mountains and a blue-green sun-glistened Kachemak Bay formed the backdrop as they married under a sunflower and forget-me-not decorated arch.

This wedding could not have been the success it was without the help and generosity of friends and family. My sister and her husband flew in from Idaho and helped set up tents, did countless chores and provided much needed laughter. Special family friend Grant poured me champagne prior to guests arriving to calm my pre-wedding mom jitters and helped me clean up after the wedding dinner.

The bride’s mother artfully arranged flower arrangements that were more styled and beautiful than any I have ever seen. 

Friends Katie and Andrea decorated the arch with greenery and flowers. For the rehearsal dinner David’s Homer grandma, Josie, made sourdough french bread and egg romaine bacon salad. Our dear friend Colin prepared the prime rib. I made a family favorite pasta salad with fresh shrimp and feta in a lemony dill tomato sauce and hot crab artichoke dip. 

Wedding day guests enjoyed a delicious and gourmet wedding feast prepared by friend and talented chef Sean and his dear wife Hilda. Friends Bill and Dorothy brought tasty bubbly mead and peach-apricot wine. 

It was a memorable and special day thanks to everyone who shared it with us. We are truly blessed.

Now, on to the recipes and summer’s bounty. 

My friend Donna prepared a yummy dinner one evening and made these great little potatoes. So simple, yet unique and another preparation for the mountains of potatoes the Other Fisherman grows in his garden for us.

These spuds are proportionally cute, crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside and seasoned perfectly.

 

Smashed Potatoes

Serves 4 

 

1 pound fresh fingerling (preferably) or baby white potatoes
 (you want a waxy potato with a tight, firm skin)

Salt 

4 garlic cloves 

Olive oil 

Freshly ground
black pepper 

Coarse sea salt 

Either 2 teaspoons roughly ground coriander seeds or 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary 

Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with
2 inches of cold water. Generously salt the water. Place the pan over high heat, bring to a boil and cook at an active simmer until the potatoes are tender. Drain and let cool enough to handle.

Peel the potatoes if you like, but when potatoes are fresh the peel is thin and I prefer to leave it on. 

Using a meat pounder or the base of a small heavy saute pan, press down on the potatoes to flatten them, one at a time, until 1/4-inch thick. This is kitchen fun! (You may need a spatula to lift them in one piece from your work surface; lay them on a baking sheet.) 

Flatten the garlic cloves also, leaving the skins on. 

Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Coat the base of the pan with a thick layer of olive oil. Add just enough squashed potatoes to fill the base of the pan. Tuck the garlic cloves in between the potatoes. Adjust the heat between medium and medium-low so the potatoes brown slowly. Let them sizzle away until nut brown, 5 to 8 minutes, then flip and brown the other side. (The garlic may cook more quickly, so keep an eye on it. Brown it on both sides, transfer it to a serving platter.) 

When the potatoes are browned, transfer to the serving platter, and season with freshly ground black pepper, a little sea salt, and either the roughly ground coriander or rosemary.

 

 

It’s time to enjoy fresh caught halibut. I am always looking for different ways to prepare our amazing fresh seafood.  Fresh sweet corn is in the market as well and being the Wisconsin gal I am, I love it. Just the smell of fresh corn on the cob takes me back to those hot and muggy carefree summers when I was a kid. Enjoy this snappy dish on one of our beautiful summer evenings.

Greek Roasted Halibut

Serves 4

Marinade:

1/2 cup kalamata olives, chopped 

2 ears of fresh sweet corn, kernels cut off cob, or 1 1/2 cups of frozen corn

1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 cup fresh parsley

1/4 cup good extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon zest 

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 teaspoons fresh oregano, minced

1/2-1 teaspoon salt 

1/4 teaspoon fresh
ground black pepper

pinch of red pepper flakes

* * *

4 - 6 ounce halibut steaks

Combine marinade ingredients in bowl and stir well. 

Place halibut in greased baking dish, flat side down.  Coat the sides and top of fish with the marinade, cover and refrigerate until baking, up to 4 hours.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F. Place fish in oven and roast for about 12 minutes, uncovered or until fish just begins to flake when tested with a fork. Serve with lemon wedges, good crusty sourdough bread and a nice garden salad.

 

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