BLT with Lemon Aoli

The lemon aoli takes this home lunch to the next level. It is tart and perfect with the salmon. It perked up my leftover salmon and brought brightness with the salty bacon, peppery arugula, and juicy tomato. I wanted to make a fun lunch to revive some leftover salmon that I overcooked a bit. It was actually better in this salmon BLT than it was the night before!
The Three Bite Rule - Lemon Aoli BLT

Salmon BLT with Lemon Aoli

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons mayo
juice from half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
pinch salt & pepper
2 strips of bacon
3-4 oz salmon, cooked and cooled

Directions:

Pan fry the bacon and remove from the grease.
Turn off the pan from the bacon and gently warm the salmon in the bacon drippings.
Mix together the mayo, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and pepper.
The Three Bite Rule - Lemon Aoli BLT
Toast the bread and slice the tomato.
Assemble the sandwich with lemon aoli on each slice of toast, then salmon forked apart into chunks, then arugula, then bacon, and the remaining bread.
The Three Bite Rule - Lemon Aoli BLT
Enjoy!

This was seriously better than the salmon was the night before. Condiments can make such a difference. An extra special BLT is a great dinner too. Warming the salmon a bit in bacon drippings is definitely a good choice.

Crispy Fish Rice Bowl

We don’t eat a whole lot of fish at our house, but I like it would like our preschooler seeing it more often. Variety is key! This was totally the easiest way to make that happen on a weeknight, in a format everyone likes! I used frozen breaded fish pieces that were super quick to cook up and serve as tacos or taco bowls. I went for a bowl and Mr. J and the little guy had the same as a taco. I liked it so much I made another one for a weekend lunch one day shortly after!

The Three Bite Rule - Crispy Fish Rice Bowl

Crispy Fish Rice Bowl

Ingredients (for 2)

2 cups brown rice
1 tablespoon taco seasoning
2-4 small pieces of breaded fish
2 cups shredded red cabbage
2 tablespoons mayo
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 1/2 cups corn
1 avocado
2 tablespoons mayo
1/4 cup salsa

Directions:

Cook the rice and stir in the taco seasoning when cooked.
Bake the fish according to the package.
Toss together the cabbage, mayo, and vinegar (can be prepped the night before).
Cook the corn.
Assemble the bowls with rice, fish, slaw, corn, and avocado.
The Three Bite Rule - Crispy Fish Rice Bowl
Stir together the salsa and mayo and drizzle over the top.
The Three Bite Rule - Crispy Fish Rice Bowl
Enjoy!

I really love bowls and it was a fun variation for me outside of regular taco night. Try it with a little one or one who doesn’t love fish. This is such a gentle flavor of fish and when it is accompanied by other foods everyone has seen, it makes it easy. The crispy factor is also super appealing. I love this and will definitely make again!

Winter Vibes Salad with Shrimp, Arugula & Pear

Winter doesn’t scream salad because a) nothing locally is in season here in New England b) it isn’t warm & comforting like winter food and c) aren’t we wearing chunky knit sweaters for a reason? However, hitting a bunch of food groups in one dish makes me feel accomplished and there’s nothing more grown up for my lunch than arugula salad – compared to eating the crust of somebody’s pb & fluff sandwich while doing something else. This is a home lunch, or a dinner! I do not condone warming fish at the office. Nope. I bring you this salad with juicy shrimp, peppery arugula and pear to inch us towards the local produce that will be, once the seasons change and because we all deserve a restaurant-quality salad at home.

winter_arugula_dressing_590_390
Veg, fruit, nuts, and fish -all in one dish? Yesss! Plus, my dressing hack takes zero brainpower and is ohh-so-perfect!

Winter Salad with Shrimp, Arugula & Pear

Ingredients: (for 1)

~4 large shrimp (~4 per person depending on med/lg/jumbo or swap with salmon/etc)
1 tablespoon butter
1/8 cup walnuts
1 1/2 cups arugula
1/2 pear, chopped
1 tablespoon Italian Dressing
1 tablespoon Honey Mustard Dressing

Directions:

In a completely dry pan, toast the walnuts over medium-low heat, being careful not to let them burn – about 3-5 minutes.
Peal & de-vein the shrimp. Then heat a small pan to medium heat with the butter. Sear the shrimp for about 2 minutes on each side until pink and just cooked through. Remove promptly from the heat and set to the side.
Mix together the arugula, toasted walnuts, pear and shrimp.
The Three Bite Rule - Winter Salad with Arugula & Shrimp
In a small jar (or in a bowl with a whisk) shake together the two dressings.
Toss the salad in the dressing.
Serve and enjoy!
winter_arugula_mixed_590_390
I love the sweet pear with the peppery arugula. There is such great flavor here without becoming super complicated- which is how I normally like salads = all.the.stuff. The dressing is spot-on and would be that dressing at a restaurant you love that you can’t put your finger on what exactly it is. The Italian dressing decreases the sweetness of the honey mustard. The best Italian is this one – seriously, so perfect.

 

Tuna and White Bean Protein-Packed Salad

Salads for lunch can be tricky. Sometimes they’re tasty but not filling, or sometimes they’re delicious but full of the add-ons and not the healthy parts. I made this one with a tweak on the traditional Italian tuna & white bean salad by really upping the greens. Balance is the goal right now. The days often end with ice cream so starting with a green-based smoothie and lunch centered around veggies, fish, and protein seems like a good idea.
The Three Bite Rule - Tuna & White Bean Protein Salad

Tuna & White Bean Protein Salad (for 2 servings)

Ingredients:

1/2 cup white beans
1 can tuna, white in water
1/2 cucumber
1/2 tomato
2-3 cups arugula

Directions:

Rinse beans, drain tuna, and wash and chop the tomatoes, cucumber, and greens.
The Three Bite Rule - Tuna & White Bean Protein Salad
Add everything to a bowl.
Mix one part Italian dressing and 1 part Creamy Caesar dressing. Then toss the salad in the dressing.
The Three Bite Rule - Tuna & White Bean Protein SaladEnjoy!

I liked the heft to the salad with the tuna and the beans with the fresh and crisp greens, tomatoes, and cucumbers. I often have arugula around because I love the peppery flavor, and it has a pretty long shelf-life in the fridge. The dressing gives the ideal alive, vinegar touch with the decadence of a creamy dressing too.

I only tossed half with the dressing and batched the rest up for the next day. I’m home on maternity leave and sometimes have fun in the kitchen come lunch time…other days, I’m grateful to have a no-brainer lunch ready to sneak it in before the next feeding/naptime/etc. I don’t often bring tuna to the office for lunch because of the smell-factor, but it would be a perfect dinner to have ready too. Reducing (and finely chopping) the greens would make this more like the traditional Italian one that would be great scooped onto crackers!
The Three Bite Rule - Tuna & White Bean Protein Salad

Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp

You’ll never guess what’s in this shrimp dish. Haha. I love these frozen jumbo shrimp and am determined to enjoy them before they get buried in the freezer or before they freezer burnt. Mr J isn’t into shrimp so this was a fun lunch for one!
The Three Bite Rule - Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp
I kept the ingredients to a minimum for speed and that it can be made anytime! It is an easy one to double, or quadruple for a quick dinner or for a dinner party!

Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp (for 1)
Ingredients:
~5 jumbo raw shrimp (defrosted, pealed & deveined, as needed)
1 cup spaghetti/linguini
2 tablespoons butter
juice of 1/2 lime
zest of 1/2 lime
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped (optional)

Directions:
Boil salted water for pasta.
Grate the garlic and zest the lime.
The Three Bite Rule - Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp
Add the pasta to the water.
Melt the butter in a medium pan over medium heat. Add in the lime juice, honey, and garlic.
Add in the shrimp with plenty of salt & pepper. Cook for 3-4 minutes then flip and cook on the other side for 3-4 minutes again.

The Three Bite Rule - Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp
Remove the shrimp from the pan and toss the cooked pasta into the sauce.
Add the shrimp in with parsley & lime zest. Toss again, then serve & enjoy!
The Three Bite Rule - Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp
It was so good! The balance was spot-on. The butter + the lime juice + the honey was an ideal combo for a light yet flavorful sauce. The zest was SO necessary for freshness. Peeling and deveining the shrimp takes a little patience but is sooo worth it for better shrimp.

The whole dish cooks in the time it takes for the pasta water to boil and the pasta to cook. What’s better than a 10-minute dinner? Nothing! Leftover shrimp is not worth it, but since this cooks so quickly, it can be thrown together anytime.
The Three Bite Rule - Honey Garlic Lime Shrimp

The shrimp and sauce would be great over rice or any grain, or in lettuce wraps, or on a crostini. The same flavors would be great for clams or muscles too!

Salmon Cakes with Bacon

Salmon BLTs got me thinking how good bacon would be into a salmon cake! It really was! It also was a great use for the 2nd portion of salmon after grilling the other piece and wanting something different. I ate it like a burger but it would be great on a salad or fun as sliders.
The Three Bite Rule - Salmon Cakes with Bacon

Bacony Salmon Cakes with Herb Aoli

Ingredients: (for 2)

~4 oz fresh salmon
2 strips bacon
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 egg
salt & pepper
2 teaspoons mayo
1 teaspoon fresh herbs (mine was chive & thyme or use parsley/oregano/etc)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of dried herbs (mine was a mix of basil/oregano/thyme/rosemary)
2 rolls
sliced tomato & arugula to serve

Directions:

Pan fry the bacon until crisp.
Chop the salmon and add to a bowl with the bacon, garlic, breadcrumbs, mustard, egg, and salt & pepper. (I chopped half the salmon into larger chunks and half into fine chunks.)
The Three Bite Rule - Salmon Cakes with Bacon
Heat a medium skillet to medium heat (preferably the same pan as the bacon cooked in) with a drizzle of olive oil. Preheat the oven to 400-degrees.
Stir gently and form into 2 patties.
Pan fry, covered for about 3 minutes on each side. Then bake in the oven for 5-7 minutes.
While the patties cook, add the mayo, fresh herbs, garlic powder, lemon juice, and dried herbs to a small bowl.
The Three Bite Rule - Salmon Cakes with Bacon
Stir the aoli and refrigerate until assembling the sandwiches.
The Three Bite Rule - Salmon Cakes with Bacon
Let the salmon cakes cool for a few minutes before assembling.
Spread the aoli onto the top bun and serve with greens and tomato.
Enjoy!
The Three Bite Rule - Salmon Cakes with Bacon

I loooooved the bacon in here! It kept it juicy and was a great compliment to the salmon. Mixing it in was way better than serving it on top. The an herby aoli has that touch of lemon to be a quick condiment for just the zing the salmon needs.

Serving a group: mix up the salmon cakes and bake in the oven for ~15 minutes on a generously oiled pan, flipping once or twice. Then you won’t have to baby-sit them frying in a pan! The aoli can be made ahead of time or double it and use the rest on burgers or sandwiches. I made 2 salmon cakes and froze the other for a treat some night when we grill since it’ll only have to warm through.

Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa

These tacos have alllll the flavors you could want: sweet mango & lime slaw & fresh & nutty shrimp. This was seriously the best thing I’ve eaten in awhile. I meant for these to be a his/hers taco night but it was too much without prepping the shrimp in advance on a weeknight at dinner time. That weeknight, Mr. J had steak and I ended up sautéing the shrimp in taco seasoning. I whipped these up for a weekend lunch with some leftover slaw and was ohh-so-happy.
The Three Bite Rule - Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa

Make a big batch of the coconut shrimp in advance and freeze and your tacos will thank you later. Reheat in the oven before serving.

Coconut Shrimp with Mango Salsa

Ingredients: (for tacos for 2)

6-8 jumbo shrimp (shells removed and deveined)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 egg white, whisked
1/4 cup shredded coconut
2 tablespoons panko
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon mayo
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 cup slaw mix or shredded cabbage
1/4 cup salsa
1/4 cup mango (mine was frozen & defrosted)
1/4 cup cucumber, chopped (optional)
1 green onion
4 taco sized flour tortillas

Directions:

Set up the dredging line up of shrimp, cornstarch, egg white, and coconut mixed with panko. Bring oil to medium heat in a small skillet.
Dredge the shrimp into the cornstarch, then egg whites, then coconut mixture. Pan fry for ~3 minutes on each side, then drain onto paper towel.
The Three Bite Rule - Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
While shrimp is cooking, whisk together the slaw dressing of mayo, lime juice, and sugar. Mix in the slaw.
The Three Bite Rule - Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
Mix together the salsa, mango, cucumber, and green onion.
The Three Bite Rule - Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
Assemble the tacos with slaw on the bottom, shrimp, and salsa.
The Three Bite Rule - Coconut Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa
Enjoy!

The shrimp was amazing. I really loved the flavor and loved how crispy they were. Now I’m wanting to make a big batch. I fried these since there were only a few.  Usually I stay away from frying things so baking them would be good for a hands-off approach, especially for a big batch.

These could be a fun app in wonton cups with mango salsa on the bottom and the shrimp placed on top.

Pomegranate Pear Salsa over Crispy Fish

At the first Pear Party/Iron Chef Pear, there was this pear, pomegranate pearl salsa that I loved, yet hadn’t made in years. It is so addicting with tortilla chips- multigrain scoops are definitely the best for it. I added some avocado and served mine on top of some beer battered fish filets for lunch and used the rest on pork tacos the following night. This is wintry and fresh with such great textures.

The Three Bite Rule - Pomegranate Pear Salsa

Pomegranate & Pear Salsa

Ingredients:

2 pears
1/4 cup cilantro
1/4 red onion
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/1-1 avocado

Directions:

Chop the pear, cilantro, and red onion. Mix together with the pomegranate pearls, lime juice & salt.
The Three Bite Rule - Pomegranate Pear Salsa
Gently mix in the avocado.
Serve & enjoy! (If not serving immediately, reserve the pomegranate pearls until serving- they leave a reddish hue on the pears & reserve the avocado- it’ll turn brown.)

So easy! You know what’s even easier? I discovered the grocery store sells the pomegranate pearls already popped out of the pomegranate! That was my hang up to make this until now. This lunch as everything: warm crispy fish, the pop/crunch of the pomegranate pearl, the juicy pear, the creamy avocado. What’s not to love?

The red & green felt super cute and seasonal here. The avocado was a game-time decision. When they’re ripe that window to use it or lose it is brief! Plus, my frozen fish filets seemed tiny. I’ve used them in fish tacos but for size reference, this is a salad plate so I thought the avocado would bulk it up a touch. It did!
The Three Bite Rule - Pomegranate Pear Salsa

Shrimp Cakes

I had another post queued up but was just so psyched by this one so it is cutting the line!  I loooove shrimp and went all out – even pan frying these! Gasp! I tend to get annoyed frying things since they require so much babysitting. These stayed together pretty well and were worth it. The shrimp cakes were full of such great corn & chive flavor! Plus if you’re growing chives, chances are you have tonssss – or sub parsley, or green onion, or whatever herb suits you.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Cake

These shrimp cakes have a touch of lemon and some sweet corn and shallots provided freshness and crunch. My corn was leftover and I used some frozen shrimp since I like to have them on hand. I’d totally whip a bunch of these up for a group, or as mini appetizers, or they were great to just make 2 servings.

Shrimp Cakes (for 2 entree servings, or 4 appetizer portions)

Ingredients:

1 cup shrimp (shelled, deveined, defrosted, etc as necessary), about 1/4 pound
2 tablespoons mayo
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon chives, minced
1/2 shallot, minced
~1 cup corn, off the cob
1-2 teaspoons lemon juice
Salt & pepper
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Directions:

Rough chop the shrimp into approximately thirds – smaller pieces but chunks.
Heat a heavy bottomed pan and oil to medium heat. (I used a small cast iron pan and added oil to be less than a quarter inch deep.)
Add shrimp, mayo, cornstarch, garlic, chives, shallot, corn, lemon juice, egg, and salt & pepper into a bowl and mix well.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Cake
Test the oil temperature by dropping in a tiny bit of the mixture. If it sizzles, spoon in about 3 tablespoons for each shrimp cake (or your desired size). Pan fry for about 3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove from the oil to a paper-towel lined plate and sprinkle with salt.
Enjoy!
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Cake

I made these on a weekend afternoon and ate some of the more crumbly ones as lunch then the next night for dinner I just toasted these through and had them on salad for dinner. I looooved that these were full of shrimp and corn. I also really didn’t want them full of filler. I love me a good crabcake but wanted these to be different. The cornstarch makes them puffy and crunchy.

Make sure that oil is hot…otherwise they’ll be greasy and not crisp. I go with the small pan to just do a few at a time. Pop the done ones in an oven to stay warm if making for a crowd! I’d do little bites in advance for an app!

Shrimp Scampi Flatbreads

I was home to make lunch and was thinking about Shrimp Scampi but it seemed a bit much for lunch so I made it into a flatbread with a scampi-like sauce. I loved it and it was the perfect fit for a surprisingly quick lunch with the flavors without messing with dough or even boiling water. Cooking the shrimp and making the sauce in that same pan makes for a lot of flavor and was just so easy.

The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread

Ingredients:

1 garlic naan
5-6 shrimp
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup clam juice
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon garlic
cracked black pepper & salt
1 teaspoon chopped chives
~2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon thyme

Directions:

Toast the flatbread.
In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Cook and flip once and cook for a few minutes per side.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
Remove the shrimp and add in the clam juice, lemon juice, mustard, & garlic.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
Whisk and bring to a low simmer. Add in more black pepper and chives.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
Spread the sauce onto the naan and top with Parmesan and shrimp.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
Sprinkle with the thyme and return to the oven for another few minutes.
The Three Bite Rule - Shrimp Scampi Flatbread
The sauce was veryyy flavorful. The clam juice, lemon juice, dijon, and garlic are fo-real. For pasta I’d probably save a bit of the starchy water to thin it out a little. I was so glad I made this one & got the flavor I was thinking about. It was easy to make a single serving and was a great reminder how quickly some classic flavors can take shape.