Blackened Opah

Oh my goodness. It’s the last day of August, and I haven’t posted since the first. It’s the end of summer, but wait…was summer here? It’s been so cold, and the grapes are 2+ weeks behind. My skin is still white white white, and um…I haven’t made it to the beach since last year? I almost feel like a bad Californian!

Luckily, we’ve been eating well. We managed to BBQ a lot, at least once a week, and I grilled fish for the first time – enter, this Opah.

Opah are huge – like, as big as your wingspan. They aren’t intentionally fished, but are caught in the nets made for tuna, and the texture is like a cross between Tuna and Swordfish. When I went to Pier 46, I was planning on getting Swordfish, but once I saw the Opah I knew I needed to try something new, and Eric was very patient in answering all my questions (as always!). Pier 46 is the best!

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Spicy Grilled Citrus Chicken

Spicy Grilled Citrus Chicken

Fun fact: my favorite food for most of my pre-vegetarian life was the rarest of rare prime rib…oh how things change!  I’m going on my ninth year of vegetarianism, but I can hold my own in the carnivore world.  My Dad was a chef, and I learned how to cook a steak when I was seven; I cook meat all the time for the kids I nanny for. I’m not a squeamish vegetarian; I’m okay if meat touches or is cooked with what I am eating, and although I’d rather not touch raw meat it’s not the end of the world if I have to.  That being said……here’s what I made my dad and brother for dinner this weekend.

Click through for the recipe, as well as a picture of my cute brother grilling!

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Grilled Gruyère-and-Zucchini Sandwiches with Homemade Pesto

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Confession: I’m a vegetarian.  I eat eggs, cheese, chicken broth, and ahi tuna, but no actual meat (besides the raw tuna).  My family grills out a lot, especially in the summer, and sometimes I get sick of the old veggie burger routine (although I’ll never say no to a Morningstar Farms Garden Veggie Burger…so delish).  Tonight was one of those nights, so while the kids I nanny for were at swimming lessons, I looked up some good grilling recipes and found this gem.  Swiss Gruyere, Grilled Zucchini, Pesto, and an English muffin – sounded like perfection to me, and then I saw the wine pairing.  Robert Mondavi’s Fume Blanc!! My favorite wine!!  Just let me tell you, it was amazing, and so easy to throw together.  ENJOY!  You definitely will!!

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My Favorite Pizza Dough Recipe

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I first made this dough in July 2008 when my now-boyfriend came over for dinner.  Even though we burnt it that night, we knew we had found an amazing recipe, because it was still delicious. Since then, we have used this recipe over and over for lots of pizza nights, cooked both on the grill and in the oven.  The pizza comes out crispy and chewy…definitely professional-status, especially when you take into account that most pizza found in California is pretty terrible.  We actually grilled pizza this past weekend for some company, and it was a hit!

I made another batch of dough this evening (hey…I don’t let good cheese go to waste!).  It only takes about five minutes of hands-on time, total, so it’s great for a weeknight meal.  Ninety-nine percent of the time, I do not cook my pizza on the grill.  What’s great about this dough is it is extremely versatile and can be cooked in a regular old oven.  I use a pizza stone, but I bet a baking dish would work just fine as well. Read on for the official recipe, and to see what I did!

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