Starring an exceptionally flavoured broth featuring gut-friendly miso, this soup proves embracing the great outdoors can play beautifully on your palate without being fussy. If visiting the coast, look for fishermen bringing just-harvested shellfish to shore. Or bring them from home in a bowl covered with a damp paper towel and placed in a cold cooler. You could also use a combination of mussels, clams, and even oysters. Serve with chunks of crusty bread.
Gently tap mussels and clams with open shells against the countertop. Discard any that do not close their shells within a few minutes or that have cracked shells. To avoid serving gritty soup if using wild shellfish (farm-raised clams and mussels are usually cleaned and flushed of sand before they’re sold), submerge clams or mussels in bowl of cool water. Leave them to soak for at least 30 minutes.
While underwater, they will breathe and filter the water, which will begin to push out any sand or other ocean grit from inside their shells. Adding about 1/4 cup (60 mL) flour to the soaking liquid can help speed up the removal of sand or grit.
Lift shellfish from water and scrub shells to clean any grit from the outside surface. Remove beards from mussels using tweezers.
In large saucepan over medium heat on camp stove or in Dutch oven placed on grill grate set over a campfire, melt butter. Add shallots, garlic, and ginger; heat for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add black pepper and chili flakes, if using; heat for 30 seconds. Add wine and boil for 2 minutes. Add 3 cups (750 mL) water and bring to a boil. Add mussels or clams and return to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until shellfish open, 4 to 6 minutes.
Remove mussels or clams from broth with tongs or slotted spoon and place in large bowl; let stand until cool enough to handle. (Discard any unopened mussels or clams.) Remove meat from shells; discard shells. (May also be served with shells.) Return any juices to pan.
In small bowl, combine miso with 1/4 cup (60 mL) of the broth; stir into smooth paste. Set aside.
Place potatoes in pan and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Whisk miso paste into simmering broth. Stir in spinach and heat just until lightly wilted. Stir in lemon juice.
Divide mussels or clams among 4 bowls. Ladle soup mixture over shellfish and garnish with green onions.
This recipe is part of the Outdoor Eats collection.
These Asian-inspired salmon burgers won’t leave you missing the beef < or > the bun. And keep this fruity and fiery salsa in mind the next time you want to jazz up grilled chicken or taco night. Serrano pepper or chile de arbol would be good swaps for bird’s eye pepper in the salsa. You can even mix some Sriracha sauce into the burgers to further punch up the meal. Skin deep Skinless fish is the only way to go for burgers. A helpful fishmonger will kindly skin fillets for you before purchase. As an alternative to salmon, you can also blend up skinless fillets of arctic char or rainbow trout.
These whimsical weeknight quesadillas offer a great excuse to break out the long-forgotten waffle iron. The smoky, tangy pepper sauce is the perfect sidekick for this dish, but it’s also wonderful when tossed with pasta, stuffed into sandwiches, and slathered on burgers. TIP : When assembling quesadillas, keep fillings centred 1/2 in (1.25 cm) from the edge of the tortilla so they don’t spill over. TIP : Chipotle chiles are dried, smoked jalapenos. Adobo is a slightly sweet red sauce. Put them together in a can and they become a versatile pantry staple to add deep smoky heat to sauces, dips, marinades, and soups. No waffle iron? Then make these quesadillas using this skillet method. Place 1 tortilla in skillet, preferably cast iron, and cook over medium heat until dark spots appear and bottom is crispy, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn over and cook until crispy and darkened on the other side. Remove tortilla from skillet and replace with another tortilla. Cook until darkened and crispy on one side, flip, and top with stuffing ingredients. Place crispy tortilla on top, press down gently, cover pan, and cook for 1 minute, or until cheese has melted.
This Mexican-Mediterranean hybrid dish gleans its tempered kick from parched ancho chilies, the dried form of poblano peppers known for their smoky quality and sweet to moderate heat. It’s a fantastic saucy, and comforting, appetizer or meal on its own. Serve with crusty bread to sop up every last bit of the red sauce, or spoon over cooked grain. Chili choices Experiment with different dried Mexican chili peppers in your dishes. Instead of ancho, other options, each with different heat levels and flavour nuances, include pasilla, guajillo, or morita. Look for them in Latin markets and some supermarkets. For leftover lovers Because the flavours in this dish only deepen with resting time, it’s a definite candidate for serving as leftovers; simply reheat in the oven or microwave. Cheezy choices If possible, compare labels and look for lower-sodium feta options. A ball of fresh mozzarella or bocconcini are great alternatives, or try a block of medium-firm tofu and substitute agave syrup in place of the honey for a vegan-friendly dish.
A good option for both backyard barbecues and healthy snacking, this creamy dip benefits from a little spicy crunch, courtesy of quick-pickled peppers. If you want your dip to have a smoky edge, blend in a chipotle-flavoured salsa. Or forgo the salsa and, instead, blend in a couple tablespoons of tomato paste and a single canned chipotle chili pepper. Extras of the pickled peppers are an exciting topping for burgers, sandwiches, and tacos. TIP : When using prepared chili pepper products such as bottled salsas, examine the ingredient list for items you really don’t want or need, namely sugar and high amounts of sodium.