Monday, October 31, 2011

Smoked Salmon Quesadillas with Corn Salsa

Who doesn't love quesadillas? All that cheese, oozing out the sides. I sure love them! Smoked salmon quesadillas have become my favorite version. I know, this is a summer-y kind of dish, but it has recently become my choice go-to meal. I swear, in the past few months, I have made this at least 4 or 5 times. I was surprised at how delicious it was! I prefer to serve mine with some Greek yogurt instead of sour cream; it still gives you a sour kick, but without the fat.

Smoked Salmon Quesadillas with Corn Salsa
Serves 2

1/2 lb. smoked salmon (not lox!)
1/2 c. Mexican shredded cheese (mixture of pepperjack and cheddar)
4 flour tortillas

Corn Salsa:
1 c. fresh corn kernels (from about 2-3 cobs)
1/4 c. diced green bell pepper
1/4 c. lime juice
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses (optional)
handful cilantro leaves, chopped finely

For serving:
Sour cream (or yogurt)

1. To prepare the corn salsa, cut kernels off the cob. Bring water in a 3 qt saucepan to a boil, cook kernels for 1 min, then drain. Put kernels into a bowl and mix in remaining ingredients. Let stand while making the quesadillas.
2. Heat a saute pan large enough to fit the tortillas over medium heat. Put one tortilla in the pan, then layer on the cheese and chunks of smoked salmon. Layer some more cheese on top of the salmon. Let sit until cheese begins to melt around the edges. Top with second tortilla, and let cook for 1 more minutes, until cheese closer to center begins to melt. Carefully flip the quesadilla over and brown on other side for 1-2 minutes.
3. Slide onto plate and cut into wedges using a pizza cutter. Repeat step 2 with second set of tortillas and more cheese and salmon. 
4. Serve with some corn salsa and a dollop of sour cream.



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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Renton Museum Auction

Last night was our 4th annual dinner auction for the Renton History Museum. Usually, I help set up the auction tables and then help with check in, but last night I was in for a treat. The guy that usually helps the caterers in the kitchen had a cold, so our fundraising chair suggested that they ask me for help. Of course I said yes. And it was a blast!

I learned so much about working in a commercial kitchen and preparing food for a large group of people (nearly 150!). We served green beans with almonds, mashed potatoes and gravy with roast turkey and roast pork. It was delicious! And I enjoyed every second of being in that kitchen. From helping slice the meat to learning how to operate the dishwasher, I just soaked it all in.

The experience really helped me realize that if I'm going to follow my dream of opening my own restaurant (and bakery and sandwich shop and....), I really need to go to culinary school. I thought by just going to baking school, I would be happy in a bakery. But baking is not my passion. It's fun, but it's not what I want to do. I want to be in a kitchen, cooking food.

I realize that at first, I'll be low on the food chain and I will be doing a lot of menial tasks. I originally thought that would bother me, having repetitive work, but at my current job, a lot of what I do is repetitive. I don't think it would bother me that much anymore.

So I've decided, I'm going to culinary school, not baking school. It's an extra year and an extra $5000, but I think it would be worth it. And someday, I will have my own restaurant and bakery and sandwich shop and...

I'm gonna be a female version of Tom Douglas.

Thanks for reading,


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