Currently I am deep in the throes of homesickness and counting the days until we get to go home again. 149 days to be exact. Told you I was counting. I am not sure if you have been to Skagit County in Washington State, this is where we spent some of our Christmas holiday. If you haven't, you should go. No really. You should go. If you're an outdoorsy sort there is a lot to do. The area is beautiful, close to the Cascade Mountain Range and the fabulous San Juan Islands. If you are not an outdoorsy sort, there happens to be quite a collection of people who make beautiful food. Here are a few places you could bide your time waiting for your friends to return from their hike, or what have you.
Samish Bay Cheese They make an addictive cheese called Lady Smith with many variations. Make sure you try the Lady Smith with Chive and the Lady Smith Black Mombazo. The Black Mombazo is their signature Lady Smith cheese that has been aged and coated in Cocoa, and Chipotle pepper. It's pretty lusty.
The Bread Farm I still dream of the Fig and Anise Pannini, the Sour Cherry and Lemon bread, their baguettes, and a Mint Chocolate cookie that will make your head spin. People, it will make your head spin.
Farm to Market Bakery in Bow Washington, I couldn't locate a website but don't hold that against them. Please, please try their Lime Polenta cakes and their Cinnamon Rolls. They might change your life.
Skagit River Brewery I can't say enough about their Steelie Brown Ale and the Bar-B-Que Brisket. Oh and the oysters, and Clam Chowder. Oh and the S'mores. I'll stop now.
There are so many more places to tell you about but you'll just have to be patient until we get back there next summer.
Well, I will share this recipe with you. It is adapted from the Colophon Cafe in Bellingham, Washington. It is one of my favorite Caesar Salads, the dressing is very garlicky, and bright with lemon.
Caesar Salad with Pan Seared Salmon
adapted from the Colophon Cafe. Serves 4 as a light entree
1/2 cup good quality olive oil
4 cloves of garlic minced, you might not want to kiss anyone soon after eating this
the juice of half a lemon
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all these ingredients in a jar and shake well. Set aside.
4, 6oz. center cut Salmon fillets
4 cloves of garlic minced
salt and pepper to taste
Pour a little olive oil over the salmon fillets, evenly sprinkle with salt and pepper and garlic. Pour 2 T olive oil into a saute pan and heat over medium. Place salmon fillets in hot pan and cook until you see that the salmon has cooked halfway through. You'll notice a change in the color of the fish up the side of the fillet. The length of time depends on the thickness of your fillet. Flip the fish over and finish cooking according to your preferred level of doneness. Remove from pan and set aside to cool slightly.
1 large head of Romaine lettuce, cut into bite sized pieces, washed and spun dry
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups of salad croutons
In a large mixing bowl place the lettuce, cheese, and croutons. Toss to taste with the dressing. Divide the salad between 4 plates and top with a salmon filet.