For a Season of Simplicity

Monday, April 20, 2015

Good morning and happy Monday! Springtime is really here, hallelujah! How beautiful are these sweet peas and haricots verts? And tomatoes on the vine over rockfish? This is a season that makes me want to cook the most simplistic meals and let the flavors totally shine. And this beautiful time of year is coinciding with a simple season of life personally.

I've been quiet on the blog the past week or so because I've been quiet in general: concentrating on keeping my feet up and not stressing about anything or pushing myself to "just get that one thing done!" so that my body can rest and not cause our baby girl to come prematurely. I know that after she arrives (we are soooo excited to meet her) and we're back in the newborn exhaustion stage and moving abroad to Croatia, that I'll think back on bed rest as a dream in a dream and slap myself for not enjoying every second of it. I think God is giving me a really sweet gift. We are so thankful she's made it to 32 weeks and there's been zero signs of her making an early move!!

We have been cooking very simple meals lately and I have a few of them to share with you this week! Our neighbors went on a fishing trip and caught a ton of rockfish off the Monterey Coast, which they generously shared with us. I took herbs from our garden and tossed them with lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, garlic and white wine to bake these filets in and topped them with tomatoes on the vine. It was incredible!

John Shea has become my little helper. His favorite task is stirring, but especially tasting, and re-tasting. We tossed the sweet peas and haricots verts, which are thin French green beans, in sea salt and olive oil and sauteed them for just a few minutes to keep their full flavor and crunch, and served them over risotto, next to the rockfish. It's such an easy meal but one that floored us by the amount of flavors.

Baked Fish with Fresh Herbs, Tomatoes on the Vine & White Wine

2 filets of white fish (we used rockfish!) rinsed and patted dry
handful of fresh parsley, rosemary & oregano, about 1/4 C when chopped
tomatoes on the vine
1 lemon worth of juice
1/8 C extra virgin olive oil
1/8 C white wine
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt 
1 teaspoon crushed garlic

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the fish filets on parchment paper in a baking dish. Generously cover the tops with the sea salt.

In a small bowl, combine the EVOO, white wine, lemon juice, herbs and crushed garlic. Spread over the filets. Place the tomatoes on the vine on top. Give a nice drizzle of EVOO over the tomatoes and a bit of sea salt to bring out their flavor.

Bake for 30-35 minutes. The fish should flake easily when touched with a fork. Serve immediately with the remaining juices ontop and alongside the sweet peas & haricots verts.

Simple Sweet Peas & Haricots Verts

about 2 C fresh sweet peas
about 2 C fresh haricots verts
sea salt

Saute the sweet peas and haricots verts over medium high heat with a generous glug of EVOO and pinch of sea salt (about 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon) so that all of the vegetables are tossed in it. Saute for about 3-5 minutes to heat up and take in the flavor from the EVOO, but no longer than that, so they remain crunchy. Serve immediately over risotto or rice, alongside the fish. Enjoy!!

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