Three Recipes and a Koala

Happy Friday everyone! I’ve got 3 super simple recipes that all take under 30 minutes to make (and prep).

First is a spinach and artichoke dip. Le boyfriend and I were shopping for snacks at Walmart the other day and he was really eyeing the Tostitos spinach dip but I couldn’t have eaten it knowing that there are much better recipes out there! I have to say I had the Red Lobster’s spinach dip taste in my mouth the whole time and mmmm.. So we scrambled around the grocery section gathering the ingredients.

You need:

  • One tub of cream cheese 
  • Fresh spinach 
  • One jar of artichoke hearts
  • Parmesan, mozzarella, and cheddar (I bought a 3 cheese mix bag)

Heat some oil in a pan and skillet (I used a Lagostina one that can also be used in the oven). Shred the spinach just so they’re not whole leaves but it don’t worry too much about the size because the leaves will shrink. When the spinach is wilted enough, drain the artichoke hearts and add as many as you want. It may smell tangy and a little vinegar-y but I promise it doesn’t make the dip too tangy, in fact I could barely taste the artichoke in the finished project!

Add the cream cheese (it’s better if you let the it come to room temperature but you can just stick it in the microwave for a minute to soften it up) and as much of the 3 cheese mix as you like (in my case, a lot). Cook the mixture until the cheese is stringy-level melted. You can also add worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and chilli powder to taste.

IMG_2714We added a layer of fresh spinach and 3 cheese mix on top of the dip and stuck it in the oven to broil so it would get a nice crispy crust. Since we hadn’t preheated the oven, we set the broiler on high and started with 5 minutes (I think it took about 8 in total) but make sure to keep watch just incase it burns!

IMG_2703

And voila! We ate it with Tostitos but this dip would be amazing with toasted pita slices. I’ve already got lobster on my list as an ingredient to have to next time.

Now for today’s experiment: salmon and buttery green beans.

IMG_2781For the salmon, you need:

  • Salmon (ours was quite thick and we cut it in three pieces)
  • Lemon
  • Garlic
  • Soy sauce or Maggi
  • Salt and pepper, other spices 

IMG_2778Cover both sides of the salmon in salt and pepper (as much as you like) then add a couple of swishes of soy sauce or Maggi. Put it aside.

IMG_2779Add butter or oil to a pan and sautee the garlic. Transfer the garlic to a small plate, add more oil or butter and grill the salmon. Le bf grilled it skin side down for 5-6 minutes, 1-3 minutes on the flip side, and about 1 minute on each side. 

IMG_2777While the salmon is grilling, cut off the ends of as many green beans  as you like and bring some water to a boil in a pot.

IMG_2780

Add the green beans and let them soften, about 8 minutes. Drain the water from the pot and add a nice glob of butter to the beans, and as much garlic as you like, mincedSautee for 1-2 minutes and serve!

IMG_2776The salmon was PERFECT! Not dry at all and cooked just right. A good rule of thumb to know when checking if salmon is done cooking is if it flakes easily with a fork. The green beans were soft but still had a little crunch and it was just buttery enough. I felt a little nostalgic remembering eating the same beans at my grandmas house years back.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Let me know if you make any of these 🙂

It would probably be helpful to take photos of the amount of ingredients I use as I realize I don’t usually follow exact measurements… Something to note for next time!

Oh, and here’s a koala.

tumblr_n1l4cicJEv1qzl1oeo1_500Okay, okay, one more.

tumblr_ky4pmrdH5g1qa2txho1_500

Have a day! 😀

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