Thursday and more squats!

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Hump Day and DT!!

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Last 2 week challenge

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Balsamic-Glazed Scallops with Tomato Salsa

Several years ago we were in Anchorage in February; the roads were clear but the snow piled on the sides of the road were massive.  So massive I don’t know if they ever fully melted.  Despite perpetual dusk and sub-zero temps, the streets of Anchorage were full of people bundled up tight and in a good mood.  Everywhere we went people were happy; not bubbly or perky by any means, but generally friendly, even to two people from the Lower 48.

Another great thing about Anchorage besides the people was the food.  We had great food every single meal, especially the caribou burgers at my uncle’s house.  Reindeer breakfast sausage, pizza at The Moose’s Tooth, and fish ‘n chips at Humpy’s, halibut at Glacier Brewhouse.  And the beer!  It was always icy cold and really, really good.  For my souvenir I bought The New Alaska Cookbook and it hasn’t disappointed.

If you’re nervous about cooking fish, there’s no need.  It’s usually super fast and simple and loaded with flavor (and of course, protein).  Always always always buy wild.  And when you buy it, stick your nose super close and take in a deep breath; it should smell like the sea: salty and fresh and like it needs nothing more than a squeeze of lemon.

When cooking scallops, use a non-stick pan or a super-hot grill and cook only until the one side is just opaque.  Flip and cook for just a few moments longer on the other side.  Scallops are best just off rare on the inside so don’t abandon them when they’re cooking. They’re sweet and fresh and my favorite.   And this recipe uses produce that’s abundantly in season right now: tomatoes, basil, and parsley.

Balsamic-Glazed Scallops with Tomato Salsa (adapted from The New Alaska Cookbook, 1st edition; edited by Kim Severson)
For the salsa:
8 oz fresh tomatoes, finely diced
3 T basil, sliced into very thin strips
2 T flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper, to taste

Combine ingredients into a large bowl and set aside.

For the balsamic glaze:
1 ½ C balsamic vinegar
1/3 C coconut sugar

Combine the ingredients into a small saucepan and simmer until reduced by a third.  Remove from heat and let cool to room temp.

For the scallops:
1 ½ lbs scallops, rinsed, patted dry, “foot” removed
wooden skewers, soaked in water
Extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper

Preheat the grill until it’s very hot.  Skewer the scallops, brush with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.  Grill the scallops for 1-2 minutes each side.  Alternatively, you can preheat a non-stick skillet and sear both sides in olive oil.

To finish:
Arrange the scallops on warm plates and drizzle with the balsamic glaze.  Garnish with tomato salsa.

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I served these on top of lemon-thyme cauliflower rice with a side of grilled zucchini.  It was fast, easy, light, fresh, and super-summery.

You might also like:
Grilled Scallops with Chimichurri
Cucumber and Tomato Salad

Tuesday

I saw some very pretty front squats tonight! Nice job everyone!
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