Grilled Salmon


Some people are intimidated by grilling fish and I’ll admit I was also. However, my husband bought a new grill and he loves to grill everything so after much encouragement, we finally tested this recipe on the grill. It was worth it because it was delicious and very healthy.

If you love salmon and are afraid to cook on the BBQ or don’t have a BBQ, check out my recipe, the perfectly seared salmon.


Meal Plan



Really Good Fish Tacos


Miami is a gold mine when looking for fish tacos. But for some reason, I have not been able to taste that one that has knocked me off my socks. This is one of the reasons I love to cook at home and experiment.  My husband is a boater and loves the water, so naturally the love of seafood goes hand-in-hand.  The start to a great fish taco is the star ingredient, the fish! You also need a good sauce, a great shell and some crunch. This recipe delivers on all of the above.  The fish is Corvina which is a white tender meat fish that resembles Sea Bass, it’s delicious. The great sauce is a homemade pico de gallo that is fresh and tangy and full of flavor. The shell can be soft or had, or even both and the crunch comes from the broccoli slaw. This is a must try recipe!




Octopus a la Scampi


I love to eat octopus but I have never attempted to make it. There is a great fish market near our house that sells all sorts of seafood and every time I go in, I see the octopus and say, “next time I am going to go for it”. Today was that day! It’s funny because when I went to culinary school one of my exams was to fillet a fish in 15 minutes and that never affected me. However, the octopus was a different story, especially when the tentacles started shrivelling up, it almost looked like it was moving (LOL). I knew it was going to be worth it so I kept going.  The tenderizing part is similar to brineing but you boil the brine mixture instead of chilling. You can also do this part in advance, chill the octopus over night and then cook the next day. This is such a great dish to impress guests and you don’t need to much. We bought the 2 pound octopu for about $20 and it easily feeds 6-8 people as an appetizer or 2-4 as a meal. I’ll provide some meal options on the tips section. When we move to our new house, I am going to make this on the grill for sure!

Ingredients – serving mentioned above
*Octopus – whole about 2 pounds
*Peppercorns – 1 tablespoon
*White wine – 1/4 cup
*Olive oil – 1/2 cup
*Garlic – 14 cloves, 8 minced, 6 whole
*Lemon – 1/4 cup juice and 1 whole, cut in half
*Flat leaf parsley – 2 tablespoons
*Kosher salt – 1 tablespoon
*Pepper – 1/2 tablespoon

  • In a large tall stock pot on high, place the octopus and add water (make sure the octopus is completely submerged and there is about an inch of water over it), white wine, 6 whole garlic clove, pepper corns, 2 halves of lemon
  • When the water starts to boil, lower to simmer and cook for about 2 hours
  • Remove from the water and set to cool to room temperature or place in the fridge
  • In a dutch oven (cast iron) on medium heat ad a table spoon of the oil, then add the octopus, add the salt and pepper and mix
  • Add the garlic, rest of the oil and lemon and cook for about 1-2 minutes, then add the parsley and cook for about 1-2 more minutes

Tips: Serve in pre-sliced pieces with toothpicks (either hot or cold) as an appetizer; Serve on a small plate one tentacle as an appetizer; serve over some pasta and use the olive oil mixture as the sauce (you may want to add a little butter for this one); serve as a salad.


Neptune Salad

Neptune Salad_book.JPGI hope everyone had a great Holiday… My holiday was amazing as I spent it with my family.  My Noche Buena beans were a hit and there were hardly any left overs. Now that the New Year is approaching I am getting back into a routine so that I can start the new year right. I have been working out and eating well, no more cheating on desserts.

Yesterday I received an email from my publishing company asking me for a replacement of a photo for the cookbook so I decided to make the recipe for lunch. The recipe in the cookbook is a little different from this one that I am going to give you guys today, but this one is very delicious also. There are so many ways that you can make this recipe different by adding and replacing ingredients that you prefer.  This is also a great recipe to have and serve as an appetizer, in a sandwich or send to lunch for the kids.  You can make in advance also for the next day.

*Imitation crab meat – 12 ounces, small dice
*Shrimp – medium, cooked, cleaned and deveined, small dice
*Red onion – 1/4 cup, small dice
*Cucumber – 1/2 cup, small dice, peeled
*Hass avocado – 1 whole, medium dice
*Cilantro – 2 tablespoons
*Lemon juice – 1/2 lemon juiced (about 1 tablespoon)
*Avocado mayo – (1/2 an avocado creamed)
*Kosher salt – 2 teaspoons
*Pepper – 1 teaspoon
*Celery seeds – 1/2 teaspoon

  • Mix the crab, shrimp, onion and cucumber in a bowl and add the avocado mayo (all of it) and mix well.
  • Add the salt, pepper, celery seeds, cilantro, lemon juice and mix again.
  • Add the avocado and the cilantro and mix one last time (folding in the ingredients to not mush the avocado).

Tips: Serve with crackers or just eat with a spoon/fork. You can also serve with celery or place in a pita pocket.

Fusilli Tuna Salad

This recipe is my re-creation of a recipe a friend of mine, Patty, used to make in high school. I loved it then so much that I have been making it for a while now and I try to change it up all the time. What is great about this salad, besides the way it tastes, of course, is that it is versatile. As you have seen on my other blog posts and by the title of the blog, I love foods and creating foods that have flexibility and can adapt to the character of the person that is creating it.  I know for some people it is easier to simply follow a recipe to the tea, but I am going to show you that cooking is actually fun when you learnto let your taste buds help you create.

*Fusilli pasta –  2 – 3 cups dry
*Red pepper – 1/4 cup, small dice
*Yellow pepper – 1/4 cup, small dice
*Green pepper – 1/4 cup, small dice
*Green onion – 2, small chop
*Cherry tomato – 4 large, small dice
*Tuna, Albacore – 1 can in water, drained
*Hass avocado mayo – 1 tablespoon
*Kalamata olives – 2 tablespoons, sliced
*Celery – 1 stalk, small dice
*Olive oil – 2 tablespoons
*White wine vinegar – 1 tablespoon
*Dijon mustard – 1 teaspoon
*Kosher salt – 1 tablespoon and 1/2 teaspoon
*Pepper – 1/4 teaspoon

  • In a large pot, add about 4-6 cups of water with the 1 tablespoon of salt and place to boil. When the water starts to oil add the pasta and cook for about 10 minutes.
  • In a separate bowl, add the tuna, peppers, tomatoes, celery, olives and green onion. In a seperate small bowl mix the avocado and Dijon mustard so it’s creamy (almost like mayo). Add to the bowl with the tuna and mix well everything.
  • When the pasta is cooked, drain it and place back in the pot to let cool. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil so the pasta does not stick together and let it cool. Once the pasta is cool (about 30 minutes) add to the tuna and mix. Add the rest of the oil, vinegar, salt and pepper and mix.

Tips: You do not have to add the tuna to the dish and just have the cold pasta. If you remove the tuna, you can also remove the avocado and mustard to make it a softer flavor. Another thing that you can add to the salad is small broccoli florets.

The Perfectly Seared Salmon

Seared Salmon in Soy Butter Sauce.JPG

Salmon is by far my favorite fish. I am a pescatarian, but do limit my seafood intake to a minimum. This recipe was the breakthrough recipe that finally gave my daughter the courage to try salmon. She has never been a huge fan of seafood and is quite picky with her selection, so when she requests this dish, it make me very happy!

You can also supplement this recipe with any other fish fillet that you prefer and I will definitely be posting many seafood recipes on my blog. I recommend that you find a good seafood market near you that you can experiment with different types of seafood (if you’re into that, lol) and I can certainly recommend the one I go to here in Miami, Florida. Visit Casablanca on the Miami River, not the restaurant, but the market next door. It is amazing and they have anything and everything you may want. The parking is a little tricky, but there is public parking on Flagler and it is a nice walk through the new park on North River Drive.

*Salmon Fillet – 4, 6 ounce fillets (skin on or off, your preference)
*Butter (un-salted) – 4 ounces
*Kosher salt – 1 tablespoon
*Pepper – 1/2 tablespoon
*Olive oil – 1 tablespoon
*Soy Sauce (low sodium) – 1 tablespoon
*Flat leaf parsley – 2 tablespoons, rough chop

  • Season salmon with salt and pepper on both sides
  • In a large non-stick skillet on medium high heat add the oil
  • Sear the salmon top side down and cook until golden brown
  • Flip salmon and cook the other side until golden brown or until the skin is crispy
    1. Medium rare (2-3 minutes each side)
    2. Medium (3-4 minutes each side)
    3. Well (4-5 minutes each side)
  • Remove the salmon from the pan and add the butter, soy and parsley until butter is melted and pour over the salmon

Tips: If you leave the skin on the salmon, make sure to start with that side when you place in the pan and make sure that the pan is really hot so that it sears the skin and makes it crispy. If you have ever had salmon skin at a sushi restaurant, same thing ; ).  There are so many dishes that will go beautifully with this dish…stay tuned!