Special Dish for the Week: Bouillabaisse

The seafood medley bag in my freezer inspires this Special Dish for the Week:

Bouillabaisse

Bouillabaisse

Bouillabaisse

I loosely follow a couple of online recipes, mainly just going from my memory of what goes into this seafood fest.

I also pleasantly discover that this fish stew is a Provençal specialty from Marseille.

It brings me back in my memory to the time in l’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue when a good friend and I made this dish with fresh ingredients from the local market.

Bouillabaisse Ingredients

Bouillabaisse Ingredients

The ingredients include:

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, for sautéeing the onions and garlic
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated
  • 3 bay leaves
  • cilantro stems, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tbsp wakame flakes
  • 1 tsp Sambal Oelek or red Thai chili pepper, finely chopped with seeds in (quantity and seeds in or out dependent on desired spiciness)
  • 1 large can of tomatoes
  • 1 cup white wine
  • potatoes, cubed
  • 1/2-1 bulb of fennel, thinly sliced
  • generous pinch of saffron threads
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • salmon fillet, chunked
  • seafood medley of squid, mussels, octopus, shrimp

I serve the seafood stew garnished with chopped cilantro and accompanied by a French rosé, Le Petit Chat.

Bouillabaisse Dish

Bouillabaisse Dish

Meal ideas & recipes from http://www.canadianliving.com/food/classic_bouillabaisse.php and http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/classic-bouillabaisse.aspx.

Special Dish for the Week: Nut and Seed Balls

On the spur of the moment, inspired by a friend’s homemade halva recipe, I make this Special Dish for the Week to serve at my Gado Gado and Poetry to Music dinner party, where the Beet Apple Charoset serves as the appetizer:

Nut and Seed Balls

Nut and Seed Balls

Nut and Seed Balls

I make two versions of this delicious and nutritious raw dessert:

  • one version sweetened with dates and honey;
  • the other, with coconut oil and cinnamon.

Both turn out fabulous!

Nut and Seed Balls - Sweeter Version Ingredients

Nut and Seed Balls – Sweeter Version Ingredients

For the sweeter version, I use the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped nearly to butter consistency
  • 4 tsp black sesame seeds (or white sesame seeds)
  • 2 tsp milled flax seed
  • 4 dates, chopped nearly to butter consistency
  • 1 tbsp honey

I make the walnut ‘near butter’ in a small chopper and set it aside in a mixing bowl. I do the same with the dates. Next, I return all ingredients and blender them together.

If the consistency looks good to roll into small balls, I make the balls and store them in the freezer. If the consistency is too liquid, I add another teaspoon of milled flax seed, and if it is too thick, I blender the mass for a little longer.

Nut and Seed Balls - Less Sweet Version Ingredients

Nut and Seed Balls – Less Sweet Version Ingredients

For the less sweet version, I use the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped nearly to butter consistency
  • 5 tsp black sesame seeds (or white sesame seeds)
  • 3 tsp milled flax seed
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4-1 tsp cinnamon (depending on preference: I use 1/2 tsp)

As with the sweeter version, if the consistency is too liquid, I add another teaspoon of milled flax seed.

To make the balls, I place the mass in the fridge for about 30 minutes to let the coconut oil solidify a little. I mix the mass and relatively quickly shape the little balls, since the heat from the fingertips begins to liquefy the coconut oil after a little while. I also store these in the freezer.

One or two balls for each guest to enjoy is plenty as these nut and seed balls are very nutrient and calorie rich. And they’re also filled with lots of TLC.

Nut and Seed Balls Served With Love

Nut and Seed Balls Served With Love