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A magical meal for mom

In less than two weeks, we celebrate a very special day. The day to show appreciation for mom and everything she has done for you. It is a day that she should not only be exonerated from her duties but be pampered and doted on.

Mom runs around farther and quicker than most anyone else in your life, whether she’s working a 9-5 day job, getting the kids to and from school, play dates, soccer practice, karate lessons, or swim meets. She’s the bookkeeper, cook, and the doctor patching up a scraped knee. The matriarch is the keystone of a family and she doesn't always get the breaks she deserves. So on this day, this one day, take the weight of the world off her shoulders and give her nothing but love and relaxation.

If you painted it with your fingers, it went on the fridge, if you sang that song you made up about socks, she recorded it. Now you’re grown up though, and a finger painting isn’t going to have the same cuteness factor, a song about socks will just make her roll her eyes. Instead, cooking a delectable and extravagant (but easy and inexpensive) brunch is a great way to show her you care.

Breakfast in bed sounds great, but let's be honest. It's messy, uncomfortable and kind of weird. No one has a lunchtime hoagie in bed, or a Steak Au Poivre for dinner while laying under the comforter.

Brunch (not it bed), however, is a great idea that offers delicious options without hours of prep.

The spread – don’t set up a buffet, rather aim for a family/country style set up. Lay it all on the table, have everyone sit down around, and just enjoy each other’s presence, telling all the great stories about mom.

Start with some bagels, muffins, and toast with butters, jams, and cream cheese. Don’t go over the top; just offer options. To take the typical spreads to another level, don’t just offer things like strawberry and grape jam, but include some things like Stonewall Wild Maine Blueberry and Bellini Jams, Caramel Apple Butter or chutneys. A house-made compound butter can also add a little zip to a bagel or toast.

A small dish of some scrambled eggs, (If a little more flavor is desired, add some Papa Joe’s Salt, and some shredded cheddar or pepper jack or even some grated parmesan).

Some of the typical breakfast meats, like sausage, bacon, scrapple, or pork roll are good, but you can make it that much tastier by adding some charcuterie like prosciutto; which is a slightly smoky, lighter, easily edible cured meat that can pair with so much such as cheese, breads, or even fruits. Salmon can also be a nice, light meat to have on the table if you want to offer a bit more sustenance. (See the recipes below)

A small variety of berries, melons, and pineapple can round out what you have on the table.

And, to finish it all off, end the meal with some real sweet treats, like a coffee crumble cake, cinnamon rolls, crepes or pastries.

Let her get that massage, give her that TV time, but don't you dare let her clean up after brunch. It is now time for her to enjoy her day while you plan for the evening. If you need dinner options, you can also refer to my previous articles about picking the perfect steak, because Dad isn't the only one who enjoys a topnotch ribeye or filet.

Two wonderfully easy and tasty recipes for salmon are a Baked Dijon Filet or Glazed n’ Grilled. The recipes below are super easy to follow. (Recipes are for four filets)

DIJON BAKED SALMON

  • ½ - cup of butter (melted)
  • 2 - tablespoons of Dijon Mustard (course ground is better than smooth mustard for this recipe)
  • 1 ¼ - tablespoons of honey
  • ¼ - cup of plain bread crumbs
  • ½ - cup of pecans
  • 2 - teaspoons of fresh chopped parsley
  • 4 – 4 ounce salmon filets

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

In a small bowl, stir together butter, mustard, and honey. Set aside. In another bowl, mix bread crumbs, pecans, and parsley.

Brush each salmon fillet lightly with honey mustard mixture, and sprinkle the tops of the fillets with the bread crumb mixture.

Bake salmon 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until it flakes easily with a fork. Season with Pap Joe’s Salt (Really the only spice/salt blend I use).

GLAZED N’ GRILLED

  • ½ - cup butter, melted
  • 1/8 - cup brown sugar
  • .5 - tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 - tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 - tablespoons white wine
  • 1 – 1 lb. / 16-ounce salmon

In a medium glass bowl, mix the melted butter, brown sugar, soy sauce, lemon juice, and white wine. Stir until brown sugar has dissolved. Reserve a small amount to use as a basting sauce; the remainder is used as a marinade.

Place salmon fillets in a large re-sealable plastic bag. Pour in marinade, seal, and turn to coat salmon. Refrigerate at least 1 hour, turning once.

Preheat grill for medium-high heat.

Lightly oil grill grate. Place salmon on the grill. Cook salmon for 6 to 8 minutes per side, or until easily flaked with a fork. Baste with reserved sauce while grilling.

Mom just enjoyed one or two delicious meals on her special day. In between those delicious dishes, she should be resting, not lifting a finger. She shouldn't be touching a dish, clearing the table, or wiping a counter. Take care of everything for mom from start to finish. Show her how much she means to you, how much you love her. She's the most important woman in your life. Prove it.

Eating is a necessary part of life; we might as well enjoy every bite.


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