Spring may have just started, but I’m a little gung-ho at the moment for all things summery, specifically grilled meat and fish. Our new apartment has two really nice grills on the common patio, which we can see from our balcony. I like being upstairs in the kitchen preparing side dishes while Dan is down on the patio grilling. If we get a table and chairs for the balcony it’s could be like family backyard grill time. Maybe that sounds a little weird, but I think it’s cute. Our old apartment was on the first level so the common space with the grill was part of our outdoor space anyway. This had its ups and downs with a lot of foot traffic, now our apartment feels much more private with easy access to the common area.
I’ve loved Jamie Oliver since he was the Naked Chef and would spend forever going through his cookbooks at my parent’s house bookmarking recipes I wanted to try out. Even though don’t cook, there were so many tasty and unique recipes I wanted to try. I had no idea he had his own website that has a ton of recipes. He also has a YouTube channel. This guy. He’s awesome. Many of his recipes are simple with straightforward ingredients that someone like me can handle and it’s all very fresh and rustic, nothing too perfect.
I enjoy recipes where Dan and I can both be in the kitchen working together; Dan cooking the meat and me putting together the veg or making a sauce. I’m at slug pace with learning how to cook but if we work together it allows me to be the helper instead of the one being doted on. Jamie has plenty of recipes where two people can work on something at the same time and since I’ve been craving warm weather food his website has been a fantastic source of inspiration.
Fantastic tomato & fennel salad with flaked barbecued fish – Dan was so excited when I showed him this tomato and fennel salad. Supposedly this is a very common Italian type dish that reminds him of home. I had no idea, I just assumed the flavors sounded good together. Neither of us have made many fennel dishes and we weren’t surprised when the flavors mixed wonderfully. Our version did not come out anywhere near as pretty as this but it was definitely tasty and will be made again.
Souvlaki (Wicked kebabs) – I gave Dan some homework one sunny day to scour Jamie’s website for something yummy and he picked out souvlaki. I’ve never had souvlaki before but Greek flavors are so good with grilled meat that I will absolutely be down to try them again. This was delicious.
Marinated & grilled salmon – I love marinated salmon. Growing up my Mom would make soy glazed BBQ salmon that was so tasty. This recipe reminded me of me of that dish and I love the brightness of the ginger and garlic with the chillies in this recipe. We’ll definitely being trying this one soon, especially with salmon-season just around the corner.
Harissa sardines with couscous salad – I have a weird obsession with sardines. I spent so long thinking they were gross without having tried them. When I did finally try them, I instantly realized that I had been missing out on extreme deliciousness. And that was just from trying the canned variety. This recipe is so unique and that fluffy couscous with spicy harissa would make an exciting dinner option.
images via: Jamie Oliver