Sunday, March 4, 2012

Food: Smoked Salmon, Baked Mashed Potatoes & Asparagus

For Christmas, J.'s parents gifted us with a smoker (probably because we always demand, err, request smoked salmon when we visit). Well we finally got around to using it this weekend, and my oh my, we will be using it again. Friday we stocked up on salmon fillets (and strawberries, oh my gosh... strawberries) so we'd be ready to cook the next day.

The process itself isn't too lengthy after you've prepared the smoker for the first time. I think it took about two hours to cook. The salmon was mighty fine (forgive my grammar, we've been watching The Wire this week). MMhmmm.

To accompany the salmon, we agreed potatoes would be best. Feeling inspired by our friends Jessie & Daron, I sought to make twice baked mashed potatoes. Courtesy of I combined a few things together and created h-e-a-v-e-n. Or at least I think so. Add that with J.'s famous asparagus and you've got yourself a fiiiiine meal. Oh, did I mention that we made smoke salmon dip for an appetizer?

We were blessed to have our friends S. and R. over on Saturday night to share in this deliciousness.

What was for dessert, you ask? Homemade strawberry ice cream. Mmm. (That'll be a later post, though.)

Baked Mashed Potatoes

4 large potatoes
2/3C fat-free sour cream
3oz softened cream cheese
1C sharp cheddar cheese
2 Tbs chopped chives
1 small yellow onion, chopped
4-6 slices of turkey bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 Tbs crushed red pepper
pinch of salt
2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp paprika

- Peel and dice potatoes into 1-2" cubes
- Boil in large saucepan until tender (about 20-30min)
- Drain and mash (do not add milk or butter) in original saucepan
- Add 3/4C cheddar cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, bacon, yellow and green onion, black and red pepper and salt and mix with hand-mixer until smooth
- Place in 9x9" buttered pan. Top with remaining 1/4C cheddar cheese and paprika.
- Bake @ 350F for 20-30min

(recipe adapted from here and here)

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