|The new Turrentine residence|
|Sold! Before the closing and champagne celebration.|
P.S. In my mind, it is so worth the temporary gastronomical sacrifice to have a home of our own. And by now if you’ve been reading this blog, you know I am not one to pass up good food or special meals.
We weren't quite at the ramen noodles for dinner is all we can afford phase but this did mean I was left to my own devices to try to make a restaurant-quality dinner for two, preferably with reasonably-priced ingredients.
Normally I would spend the time during my son’s nap prepping dinner. Instead of sifting through ingredients in the pantry to combine for dinner, I found myself overwhelmed and sitting in a sea of every blue fabric sample the furniture store had to offer, trying to decide with Dan what would be the perfect color for the chairs in our new place. Ah, the shifting priorities a new home owner experiences.
Not being a natural at interior design, I think I would have preferred to be weighing the merits of couscous over brown rice for dinner versus marine blue or sea blue fabric and what it looks like depending on how the light hits it. At least couscous and brown rice are the same color no matter what light you eat them in.
I had a few other things on my mind (like packing up our belongings to move eventually) and for the first time in a while, cooking dinner was not my top priority. When 5 pm rolled around and we declared we were perhaps over-thinking (imagine that?!?) the chair situation, I realized that I had done nothing for dinner and promptly hit the road and headed to the fish market to pick-up cod.
I’ve extolled the virtues of cod on this blog before. Lest you have forgotten, I love it as it is reasonably-priced, has a very mild, shellfish-like taste and can stand up to high temperature cooking like roasting. Since I already had the spice rub from my Five Spice Fish, I decided that a riff on that dish would be a start of a dinner. While at the fish market, I came across some Pomi tomatoes and white northern beans. I picked up a shallot and with that, dinner was starting to come together. A word on Pomi tomatoes: they always taste as though you are using fresh tomatoes and are a great staple to keep in your pantry.
While Dan put our son to bed, I heated olive oil in a pan and began to brown garlic and a minced shallot. Once browned, I added about 1 ½ cups of Pomi tomatoes to the pan. I sprinkled a generous helping of oregano and salt into the pan and let the tomatoes reduce over a low-medium heat. Once my tomato compote (let’s be fancy here) finished reducing, I coated the bottom of a shallow baking dish with olive oil, ladeled some of the tomato mixture in the bottom of the dish and then placed the fish in it and sprinkled it with my favorite spice rub. I sprinkled the rinsed northern beans in the dish as well and sent it to the oven to roast for 17-20 minutes.
|Fish, beans and tomato compote pre-oven|
Dan and I actually apologized almost at the same time to each other for not speaking because we had simply put our heads down and dug into dinner and didn’t stop until our plates were clean. After dining at Chez Colleen, we pushed aside the fabric samples and stopped looking at the shelves of china that needed to be packed and settled in for a perfect fall night of college football with full tummies.
Roasted Cod with White Beans and Tomato Compote
1 lb fresh cod
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus a bit more for coating the bottom of the shallow baking dish for the fish
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 shallot, minced
1 1/2 cups pomi chopped tomatoes
Five spice rub, enough to dust fish (click here to see this recipe and scroll to bottom for Five Spice Rub recipe)
1 15 oz can northern beans, drained
In a small pan, heat olive oil until it smokes. Add garlic and shallot and brown. Add tomatoes and cook over low-medium heat until reduced. Use oregano and salt to season your compote. It's important that you taste the compote as it cooks and add a dash of each seasoning to make it taste perfect and to suit your palate.
Using a shallow baking dish, drizzle enough olive oil in to coat the bottom of the dish. Spoon some of the compote on the bottom of the pan. Place the fish on top of the compote and sprinkle with just enough five spice rub to cover the top of the fish. Sprinkle the drained northern beans around the dish.
Place in the oven and roast for 17-20 minutes.