The Cheesecake Addiction

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Archive for the tag “seafood”

Mahi-Mahi Salad

Hey, hey, hey!

The answer is yes, blogosphere. Yes, I am single-handedly making my way through that batch of cookies. Because guess what? There wasn’t enough chocolate in the world this week. But somehow, I’m getting through.

Note to Mom: I did NOT eat cookies yesterday, when I was puking up my lungs. I promise. I only ate toast.

But I’m mildly better today, and so I continue to finish off that batch.

So on Monday, the day BEFORE all consuming nausea set in–we made an awesome round 2 lunch with our left over Mahi-Mahi. Our dinner the night before was simple: roasted fish and veggies, with delicious couscous (“the food so nice, they named it twice!”)

For lunch, though–I flaked up our fish and did it tuna-salad style. I stirred in some mayo, mustard, salt, pepper, and balsamic vinegar. Simple and lovely.

Chop up some red peppers...

Chop up some red peppers…

And some thinly sliced red onions...

And some thinly sliced red onions…

Spread some hummus on toasted bread.

Spread some hummus on toasted bread.


Top with tuna and accouterment! (Don't forget to put some yummy mayo on the other side of the bread!!)

Top with tuna and accouterment! (Don’t forget to put some yummy mayo on the other side of the bread!!)




Yes, enjoy it because it healthy for you, packed with protein, and light. 🙂

Back tomorrow with our Weekly Cocktail–The Sazerac!



So I’ve Been Away…And It’s Been CRAY

WHOA! It cannot have been more than a month since my last post?!

Oh my gosh, it’s been more than a month since my last post.

Well, that has to be fixed.

It’s hard to come back after so long and really narrow it down. I mean, so many things have been cooked. We’re getting into fall, so CDR and I have started making a lot of soups…we’re back on making stock, too. The other night I made a delicious dinner of baked Arctic Char (kind of like salmon) and…oh gosh…I have no idea what I served with it. BUT, I know that I marinated the fish in white wine, salt, and pepper for twenty minutes. Then I dried off the filets and rubbed them with olive oil, dijon mustard and sprinkled on some fresh rosemary, salt, and pepper. The white wine went into the pan as well, and it all baked at 400 for about twenty minutes. Drizzle that biz with some lemon, and you got winner winner good fish dinner! 

Boom Dynamite! (That’s for you, Ms. Archer if you are reading)

Additionally, I recently started mentoring an awesome woman named Georgia. She’s in culinary school and so we get to spend a lot of time cooking together. On Tuesday, she wanted to make pumpkin pie, so we did. (well, she did…I just opened a few cans).Image

I also made an apple crumble yesterday. Same ol’ same ol’. Peeled and chopped apples. Toss with flour, sugar, spices, and per Alton Brown’s suggestion…Apple Jack. Bake with crumble topping (oats, sugar, butter, cinnamon, etc) for about 45 minutes.Imageout 45 minutes.Image


ImageNaturally, I have no photos of the topping or the finished product. 

It was good…not my best. The apples didn’t really get very syrupy and the top didn’t really crunch the way it is supposed to. But the flavors were there. Nommers.

In the time I’ve been gone, I sold my first house and CDR and I bought a car. We went to IKEA and really started getting the place ready for the holidays. Financially, we’re starting to look good again and things are moving along, better than ever.

Right on. 



Mahi-Mahi Wraps and My Birthday

Ok. Wow. As I typed “my birthday” just now (up there ^) I realized that I didn’t have cake on my birthday…or the celebration before. I didn’t blow out any candles. Shoot. CDR, get on that! I’m mildly debilitated with sadness over this fact.

I’ll get back to my birthday wish in a second. First, I’ll tell you about the extraordinary food I’ve made/eaten these last few days. We have to rewind to Saturday.

On Saturday evening, after yet another car melt-down, CDR and I found ourselves in Trader Joe’s trying to figure out what we wanted for dinner. He was thinking maybe fish tacos and I was thinking maybe Indian food. So we compromised. Mahi-Mahi wraps with a curried mayo and ginger chutney.

Oh. My. God.

First, we sliced the fillets of fish into long strip chunks (yes, the technical term) and coated them with some turmeric, coriander, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper.Image 1

We cooked them on a flat top grill with some red onions.Image 2

And sliced up some tomatoes.Image

Then we built our beautiful wraps. On the bottom, we spread curried mayo (mayo with curry powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and lime juice) and some jarred ginger chutney (found at Trader Joe’s). Top with fish, carmelized onions, and fresh tomatoes and ALWAYS when it comes to fish, add a little lime or lemon juice on top.Image 3

It’s so pretty, right? And sooo tasty!

The next morning, we had some left over fish and being the resident Jew of Reason, I suggested that rather than the smoked trout we had from Trader Joe’s, we put the left over mahi-mahi on a bagel with some cream cheese and the works.Image 4

Mmm, good. An onion or everything bagel is key here. It goes bagel, cream cheese, fish, tomato, red onion, capers, LIME OR LEMON JUICE, and topped with some dressed arugula.

Later that night my parents took us out to one of my favorite places, Quartino. It’s a delicious wine bar with small, delicious plates. CDR and I stayed up until midnight, because I will ALWAYS be that person that LOVES her birthday. I love my birthday.

On Monday, Birthday Morning, CDR surprised me with a yummy breakfast.Image 5

French toast with raspberry cream (he mashed raspberries with cream cheese).

It was an awesome start to the morning, and then I went off to the office meeting where about five colleagues came up to me asking where CDR and I had those delicious looking mahi-mahi wraps.  Delighted, I told them we made them.

CDR, it might be time to make ourselves a little demo tape for the Foodnetwork. Right? I mean, we’re totally an awesome duo.

That’s all for now, guys. Hope you have a good one!

P.S. CDR just informed me that he’ll make cake and candles happen tonight. Yep. We’re awesome.


A perfect night for a dock side lobster boil at Shuckers in Woods Hole!

Real Estate, New Apartment, Menu Planning, and Seafood Tacos

Well hi there! And again, OH MY GOD SO MUCH HAPPENED.

CDR and I have moved into our new apartment and we have an adorable kitchen with stupid high cabinets, great counter space, and a dance floor.

I got a job at Weichert, Realtors-Nickel Group–a firm in Oak Park and I am open for business. The site is still under construction and will soon include a DIY Blog, but take a look here and I don’t know…maybe call me? I need clients (buyers, renters, and sellers!).

Ok, so two huge new things. Both have meant that CDR and I have to live pretty tightly. My new income is commission based, so I’m living off of savings and a little bit of support from my parents. Pretty tight living, but good living. To keep costs down, we’ve been planning our menus a week in advance. I teased him about this, for his meticulous planning, but really–it saves a ton of money. Other money savers: Buying a whole chicken, butchering it yourself, and then making your own stock. Seriously, guys. Chicken is so expensive. You probably will save between$3-$6 just buying it whole, and then butchering it yourself. And you’ll save $3-$4 dollars by making your own stock and you’ll get twice as much. Just throw the back bone and gizzards into a pot or slow cooker with herbs, lemon, garlic, onions, veggies (really whatever you want) and cover with water. Simmer in a pot for an hour, or slow cook as long as you want, strain and jar it up. Keep in the fridge for a week or store it in the freezer for a couple months. Totally worth it. I’ve found that my favorite stock was made with a sliced lemon, a bunch of fresh cilantro, and a couple cloves of unpeeled garlic (salt and pepper to taste). Yep. That’s it. And you’ve saved about $10 total. Do this once a week and each month you’ll have enough wings to do a “wing night” for two. 🙂

Do the same with leftover veggies and make vegetable stock.

OK. Food time. Before we moved and on a night when the weather was particularly awesome and we were feeling close to our SoCal roots, we decided that seafood tacos with a chipotle sauce were the only way to go. SO, we went to Whole Foods and bought some calamari and shrimp. We let them marinate for about 15 minutes in some lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper.marinatingseafood

And meanwhile, CDR made the chipotle sauce. Pretty sure it’s just mayo mixed with a bit of dijon and some adobo sauce from a can of chipotles. And maybe some lime juice and cider vinegar.



Then we skewered the seafood and grilled it (I, as always, was in charge of the grilling–because, you, know…I’m a grillin’ machine).grillintime



We created our taco assembly line.

Red onion, tomato, cilantro, avocado, limes, seafood, and corn tortillas

Red onion, tomato, cilantro, avocado, limes, seafood, and corn tortillas

And assembled some bad-ass SoCal tacos. Drizzle with fresh lime juice and chipotle sauce. Serve with beans and rice and you got yourself the best damn tacos ever!

These babies fell from Heaven and right into my tum tum!

These babies fell from Heaven and right into my tum tum!

Ok, actually, the shrimp was a little weird. But I’m very particular about my shrimp. I think it was slightly under-done or something, but the calamari was perfect. The trouble is that when you’re skewering shrimp, it curls up. And usually, a curled shrimp is the way to tell doneness, but if it starts out curly it’s all a timing thing. But typically 3 minutes on one side and 2-3 on the other is pretty good for shrimp.

So yeah. Seafood tacos. A win.

Thanks for stopping by, and don’t forget to tell your friends I’m a fancy realtor in Chicago now. 🙂

Love and Foodie Hugs.

Steamers, Beer Flights, and Birthdays

Me, whale watching.

Hello Everyone–

It’s good to be back on thecheesecakeaddiction after a week and a half hiatus. CDR and I had a wonderful time in Woods Hole, we ate delicious food, and kayaked on the ocean. Four days after my return, I’m sipping some tea called Cold Care, nursing a head cold–about 5 minutes ago, I cursed the kettle for it’s high pitched, obnoxious shrill shriek and just ached to return to the Cape. But you’re probably not interested in my head cold. You’re wondering about what I ate this week.

Well, when I landed, first thing was first. I had to have my all-time favorite Cape Cod lunch. The picture was kind of so-so, so I won’t bother with it. But it’s a whole-wheat pita, stuffed with fresh seafood salad and avocado. It’s light, sweet, buttery, and not too unhealthy. This particular seafood salad (from the local market) doesn’t have too much dressing on it, so it’s actually pretty good for you. I LOVE this right before going to the beach. Awesome.

When CDR arrived on Wednesday, I took him to Shucker’s (a local dock-side eatery) for oysters, clams, and fish tacos. Delicious. We also made it to Captain Kidd (where one year earlier I had my first legal sips of alcohol) for a mid-afternoon beer flight and fish and chips.

All delicious. The two on the left (so sorry, can’t remember their names) were my favorite because they were a bit bread-y. And bread-y beers are my favorite.

On Friday, we went whale watching (yay humpbacks!) in Provincetown and got a taste of P-towns finest steamers! Steamed clams in a garlic, white wine and lemon sauce. SO GOOD!! They were slightly gritty, but mostly—they were just delectable. We followed the steamers with a lobster BLT. 

That night, my uncles and dad joined us at the Fish Monger for dinner. I ordered fried calamari for the table. But this was very special calamari. It was served over marinara sauce, but drizzled with a rich balsamic reduction sauce. YUM-O!

One day for lunch, we just opted to stay at home and eat on the deck. CDR made a delicious sandwich (turkey and salami), and we ate it with a heaping helping of Cape Cod Salt and Vinegar chips, which by the way are the BEST chips. Other good flavors: BBQ and Salt and Pepper.

Sunday was my birthday and we went kayaking! So much fun. And so beautiful. That night, we had a pizza party and a chocolate cake with raspberry icing. I couldn’t have imagined a better week. It was perfect.

While I was gone, there was obviously much reflection. This summer has been really hard, and it was really overwhelming to be in this place that I feel so connected to and so much at home. On the coast, with ocean air. I’ve been holding on to a lot, and while I was sitting on the beach a single lyric kept coming back to me.

When everything’s meant to be broken, I just want you to know who I am. (Insert epic instrumental solo)

And maybe that’s why I’ve held on. Just wanting to make sure you know who I am. But also, I realized–I’m okay, if you (or for the majority of the readers–this person) don’t know. This place does.

I love Chicago. It’s great for my career. It’s great for food. I met my best friends here. But I belong in Woods Hole.

I should be by the ocean, sailing, kayaking through rocks and seabirds, walking in nature, cooking seafood, swimming with jellies, and never twenty feet from

…a miracle.

So, I’ll have to get there someday.


Something Magical This Way Comes…

“Sometimes you can’t  go back, but why’d you have to go and make a mess like that?

I just have to say before I let go…Have you ever been low?”

Absolutely I was playing my old CDs again. It isn’t my fault Kelly Clarkson, Five for Fighting, and Julie Roberts all had relevant things to say. Well, it’s been quite the whirlwind. Wizard of Oz closes tomorrow (and you all will miss out if you don’t come) and life is starting to calm down. I’m starting to…just starting to…feel like myself again. Now, I’m not without my tears, but slowly and surely…I’m coming back. I can even listen to that ridiculous song by the Fray without crying now. Accomplishment? Yes.

But I’m looking for a little more. A little magic. And maybe I just need to get back to Woods Hole (two weeks and three days!)  and sit on the beach or go sailing or have drinks at the Kydd or late night pie at Pie in the Sky and it will all just go away and feel much better. Sunny with a chance. It is the place I feel most myself, so maybe…that’s all the magic I need.

“Fifteen, there’s still time for you.

Twenty-two I feel her too.

Thirty-three you’re on your way…

Every day’s a new day.”

But in my search for magic and in the event that life slowed down a bit, I had the chance last week (was it Tuesday?) to cook something a little more decadent than usual. Salmon with a blueberry sauce. OH MY GOODNESS. So delicious. Found the recipe here. I followed it exactly with the exception of using fresh rosemary instead of fresh thyme. I served it with some grains and a salad. It was really unbelievable. And I had more pictures for you, but now I can’t find my camera cord…so this will have to do.

Tell me you don’t want to bite into this…

For dessert, I made peanut butter cups. Also magically decadent. I mixed a cup of peanut butter with a cup (give or take) each of powdered sugar and graham cracker crumbs. Then I mixed in a bit of vanilla extract and a stick of melted butter. Press firmly into a small pan and cover with melted semi-sweet chocolate. Couldn’t be easier. See?

I’ll try to find that camera cord asap, so that I can show you process photos of making the salmon and sauce. But really, give this one a shot. It’s completely worth it.

So, to recap: I’m a bit better, I just keep swimming. I need a little magic–and I’m finding it in my food, my theater, love, family, books, and as always–water. Just reaching out into the cyber infinite, hoping these words find someone who is also a little stuck. Are you there, God? It’s me, Margaret. Ha.

Eat well.

“I’m in trouble if these wheels stop rolling.

So god help me keep moving somehow,

don’t let me start wishing…

I’d sure hate to break down here.”


Back in Action

Hi everyone! Oh my gosh! It’s been a while. I went to Woods Hole and that was a lot of fun. I got my fair share of seafood—actually I think I had some each day. Seafood salad, swordfish, striped bass, fried shrimp, oysters, smoked bluefish, and…I know there was more. Aside from the fried shrimp, it was all pretty healthy…if you don’t count the ridiculous amount of cheese and crackers I consumed. But I had a wonderful time with my family. We celebrated my 20th birthday, went to the beach, and even went golfing. This past week was spent with my amazing friends, who threw me their own party. Props to Wendy for that delicious chocolate bundt cake. And sadly, saying goodbye to Wendy, and other best gal pal Miriam as they leave for college. I’ve been spending time getting ready for school (that starts a week from today) and other extracurricular shows that are coming up. Yes, this semester is promising to be chaotic at the very least. But I’m sooo ready to jump back in the swing of things.

Things I’ve cooked lately have been pretty basic. Spaghetti, cookies, a cake here and there. But this one I thought you guys might be interested in. It’s a simple chicken dish. Preheat oven to 400, and put boneless, skinless chicken breasts and/or thighs and drumsticks. Chop up four or five tomatoes as well as about a cup of kalamata olives. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, and then top with the tomatoes and olives. Drizzle with olive oil and the juice of half a lemon and bake about 35 minutes until done. When done, top with fresh basil and parmesan if you like. We served it with rice. The flavor was unbelievable, especially the broth that the tomatoes and olives make. I think if the chicken was crisper it would have been better, so maybe get skin-on chicken breasts. This however poses two problems. How do you get the flavor to soak into the chicken, and then with all that liquid, how do you keep the skin crispy. While there are a few more weeks of summer left (weather wise, not school wise), I think I may try this one again and get back to you.

On the baking agenda this week: cakes. My friends got me a cook book titled United Cakes of America, written by baker owner Warren Brown. It has the recipes for cakes that are particular to each of the states, including a New York Style Cheesecake. Now, I’m going to make it. But I have a hard time switching up recipes once I’ve found one that I like. I’m very partial to my own recipe, but Warren seems to know what he’s doing. So I’ll give it a shot. But I’m not changing that much. I’m still a cheesecake purist. Plain cheesecake. All the way.

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