Hello strangers. I’ve set the time aside tonight to update my much-neglected blog! And why today? Because tomorrow is my birthday, I’m turning 27! And on every birthday, I always reflect back on the past year I’ve lived. Now if you have no desire to hear about my life, skip right through to the recipe! If you actually sit around and read this, thank you for caring haha.
Let me tell you people, much has changed! First of all, the transition from being a university student to a working woman i.e. the transition from jeans and sleeping in to blazers and 9hr work days has been a 180 degree change. Scary, exciting, and fulfilling. But what I noticed the most, is that as much as I love applying my academic knowledge to my work everyday, I missed accumulating that knowledge, and discovered that I can’t be happy unless I’m constantly learning something new. I think my aha moment came when I found myself at Wreck Beach, testing if an egg would cook in aluminum on the sand, and at what temperature (yes I brought a thermometer to the beach). Information-starved. Learning something new in large amounts in a short amount of time is different from accumulating experience at work. So I discovered Coursera, something I highly recommend if you can’t seem to learn enough, like me! I signed up to classes, all free and online videos, from real profs from around the world. So far I’ve taken Thinking and Analysis, Financial Basics and now my favourite, History of Humankind. I’ve been pretty fascinated by exactly how humans went from being in the middle of the food chain to the top, and the consequences of this move, the evolution of money and religion, etc. etc. I listen to a 30min lecture every morning while I’m getting ready, go to work, usually attend an after-work event, then come home and indulge in my next favourite thing to learn… wine. I love wine, always have, always will. Why not be pro at it?! I have a constant stack of wine books on my nightstand, and read them before bed. I also squeeze in wine tastings and festivals where I can, and apply what I learn in the books to my purchases at the wine store so I can accumulate practical knowledge. Vancouver Urban Winery is great for wine tastings and classes by the way.
And you know what the best thing I discovered this year? That I can tie in all my passions in life, into one pretty bow and everything works perfectly. What are your passions? Mine are biology and love of the ocean, food (both cooking and dining out), wine, and socializing. My work involves sustainable seafood and restaurants, so basically marine research and the establishment of partnerships with restaurant chefs, owners, etc. My playtime complements my work so well, and vice versa, I couldn’t have asked for more.
So if I could summarize my year in one word, I think it would be: accumulate. Accumulate knowledge, experience, friends, networks.
Since this is a food blog, here is a list of my favourite establishments that I’ve discovered this past year. I frequent them often, the chefs are excellent, and such sweethearts too (maybe the food tastes better when you know the person who made it??) and you should try them out!
- YEW Restaurant
- Reflections Lounge
- Minami and Miku (sister restaurants)
- West Oak
- Hapa Izakaya oyster bar
I’d post a list of my favourite wines that I’ve discovered, but there is much I still don’t know, and am shy about revealing my favourites which are still modest ventures into the wine world. Maybe stay tuned for that next year…
NOW. Finally. Onto the recipe. So this summer, my family came to visit, and with both my brother and dad in house, there was a lot of grilling that went down on my little balcony. We had an awesome fishing trip, I had immense fun driving the boat, we caught some beautiful coho, and brought it home to cook. Much to my delight, when we slit the belly open, there was some beautiful roe. We brought it home to eat on crostini and it was melt-in-your-mouth amazing. I also dissected the stomach, and found juvenile crabs which I was highly interested in. Sorry, nerd moment.
A problem I have with grilling fish sometimes is that the fish can go from being just right to overcooked in no time at all. So making the salmon “en papillotte” works well. It’s traditionally done with parchment paper, but on the grill, aluminum foil had to work. The salmon is all wrapped up so the juices have nowhere to go, and it basically steams itself in there. Now what is the point of bbqing the salmon if you’re steaming it you ask? Well because it’s freaking SUMMER and as a Canadian who’s starved of sun, any excuse to turn the BBQ on is a good one, don’t question it.
- Wild Pacific salmon fillets
- Salt and pepper
Okay, so super easy people, put everything in the foil…
Wrap it up, toss on bbq.
Place on crostini, eat, be happy!
Sorry if the recipe was a let-down cos it’s so simple and easy! And it’s also not quite bbq season anymore. But if it makes you feel any better, THANKSGIVING is coming up!!!! I’ll be making an epic meal for my loved ones in Vancouver and will take many many pics. Obligatory roast turkey, scalloped potatoes, and my hit pumpkin pie. Someone else will take care of the green stuff.