We finally got our first real taste of spring this week…minus the intermission of isolated thunderstorms yesterday, of course. The flowers are blooming and the trees are budding, which can only mean one thing…summer will be here before you know it! If you are anything like this Bite-Sized Blonde, you love summer. If this was a video blog, a shot of the lake at camp would be panning out on your screen right now while reveille played in the background. Yes, I just went there. I love camp.
Whether you love summer because of the great memories you made at camp as a child, or the great memories you are making now as an adult on the beaches of the Hamptons and Fire Island, the power of summer is undeniable. So, excitement is not only natural right now, it’s expected…unless of course you have been slacking at the gym this winter. I would be lying if I said I’ve been a gym junkie all winter long. Hey, a girls’ gotta live a little. But now, I am in full-on summer prep mode. As a true Foodie, I don’t exactly believe in diets. Would you tell Picasso to only paint in oils or Amare Stoudemire to only make lay-ups? Of course not! So, you can’t tell a Foodie to only eat low cal foods. It’s just wrong. (I’m sure there is a clever analogy in there somewhere).
To get bikini ready, I pray to the gods of spin class and Physique 57. If you don’t know about Physique, you should check it out. It’s the most, rewarding and painful experience you can have in NYC. And spinning is the best way to work up a sweat at the gym. But I’m told exercise alone won’t cut it. So, when I am in summer mode, I opt for lighter meals every once in a while so I can still enjoy my guilty pleasures, which right now is a carton of vanilla ice cream. Thank you Haagen Dazs.
Lighter doesn’t have to equal less flavor. Sacrificing flavor for calories is like wearing a designer knock-off. It looks similar, but you know it’s just not the same. And would you really be caught dead in a knock-off? I didn’t think so.
My go-to “Summer is So Damn Close I can Taste it” meal is Steamed Cod with Ginger and Scallions. This dish is so packed with flavor, you don’t even realize it’s a light meal.
Steamed Cod with Ginger and Scallions (serves 4)
3 tbsp. rice vinegar (unseasoned)
2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. finely grated peeled fresh ginger*
4 skinless cod filets (about 1 ½ pounds)
6 scallions, chopped
In a large skillet with a tight lid, combine the vinegar, soy sauce, ginger and scallions. Season both sides of the fish with salt and pepper. Place the fish in the skillet and bring the liquid to a boil. Once the liquid comes to a boil, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Cover and cook until the fish is almost opaque, which should be about 6-8 minutes.
*Ginger can be tricky to peel because it is so misshapen. An easy way to peel ginger is to actually forgo the peeler altogether! Use the back of a spoon to peel the skin away; it helps with all the nooks and crannies! Once the ginger is peeled, grate 2 tbsps. If you have extra ginger left over, freeze it!! You can actually grate frozen ginger into your meals in the future when a recipe calls for it.