Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Avocado-Egg Salad Sandwiches

Skip the mayonnaise and make your next egg salad with creamy, fresh avocado and a touch of Greek yogurt. This sandwich spread is light, nutritious, and deliciously simple.

Choose a hearty, healthful whole-grain bread and toast it for a bit of pleasant crunch.

Serves 2

  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and halved
  • 1 medium avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled
  • 1 tbsp plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tsp chopped chives
  • 4 slices crusty, whole-grain bread
  • 4 thin tomato slices
Salad Ingredients
  1. Remove the yolks from 2 eggs and discard. Chop the remaining egg whites and 2 whole eggs. Set aside.
  2. Place 1 avocado half in a medium bowl and add the yogurt, lemon juice, and mustard and season with salt and pepper. Mash with a fork to combine well.
  3. Chop the other avocado half and add to the mashed mixture along with the chopped eggs, red onion, and chives. Stir gently to combine.
  4. Lay the bread slices on a work surface and mound the avocado mixture on 2 pieces. Top with the tomato slices.

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Ready to Mash

Mashed Avocado Mixture

Avocado-Egg Salad Mixture

Top with Tomatoes
Close the sandwiches and serve.

Avocado-Egg Salad Sandwiches

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Andouille and Black Bean Soup

This simple, easy (and fast!) black bean soup comes together with canned black beans, but  you can slow it down—and make it even better—by cooking the black beans from scratch. But when time is short, canned black beans work just fine. (Be sure to drain and rinse them well before using.) This soup is on the table in about a half hour.

Serves 4-5

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 12 oz andouille sausage, cut into 1/3-inch-thick slices
  • 3/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 3/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 2-1/2 cups canned black beans, drained and rinsed

Andouille Sausage

Prepared Sausage

Prepared Vegetables

Rinsed Beans
  1. Heat a soup pot or large saucepan over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the andouille and cook, stirring several times, until browned and just cooked through, 6-7 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl.
Sausage Beginning to Cook

Cooked Sausage
  1. If there is less than 1 tablespoon of oil in the pan, add a little more. Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring a few times, 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the cumin and paprika and season with salt and pepper. Cook 1 minute.
  3. Add the broth and beans and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and cook, covered, until all the vegetables have softened, 5-6 minutes.
  4. Return the andouille to the pan and add the parsley. Cook 5 minutes.
Vegetables Added

Softened Vegetables

Spices Added

Cooked Soup
Divide the soup among bowls and serve hot.

Andouille and Black Bean Soup

Monday, September 9, 2019

Pan-Seared Salmon with Sweet-and-Sour Orange Sauce

This fast, flavorful dinner is made even faster and more flavorful by pan-searing the fish and stir-frying the vegetables—and using a fresh, orange-based sauce to dress both. Quick cooking at a high temperature means very little fat is needed. In this recipe, I used four teaspoons of peanut oil: two for the salmon and two for the vegetables.

This is a simple, flavor-loaded meal that’s easy to put together—and that’s easy to feel good about.

Note: I had thin salmon filets, about 1/3-inch in the thickest part. If you have thicker pieces, adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Serves 4


For the Sauce
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh orange (from 1 large naval orange)
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tsp sambal oelek (ground fresh chile paste)
  • 2 tsp white sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp cornstarch
For the Salmon
  • 4 tsp peanut oil, divided
  • 2 cups small broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped red bell pepper
  • 3 oz mung bean sprouts
  • 4 4-oz salmon filets
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
Broccoli, Sprouts, and Bell Pepper

4-oz salmon filets

For the Sauce
  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl, stirring well to dissolve the sugar and cornstarch.
Sweet-and-Sour Orange Sauce
For the Salmon and Vegetables
  1. Heat a wok or deep skillet over medium-high heat and add 2 teaspoons of peanut oil, swirling to coat. Add the broccoli and red bell pepper and stir-fry 3 minutes.
  2. Add the bean sprouts and stir-fry 2 minutes.
  3. Re-stir the sweet-and-sour orange sauce and pour over the vegetables. Toss well to coat. Cook until the sauce thickens slightly, 2 minutes.
Broccoli and Bell Pepper Beginning to Stir-Fry

Bean Sprouts Added

Sauce Added
  1. Meanwhile, heat a heavy skillet over medium-high heat and brush with the remaining 2 teaspoons of peanut oil. Season the salmon with salt and pepper and sear on 1 side 2 minutes.
  2. Turn and sear the other side until the fish is just cooked through, about 2 minutes, depending on thickness.
Salmon Beginning to Sear

Salmon after Turning
To serve, divide the salmon between 2 plates and spoon the vegetables and sauce on top.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Sweet-and-Sour Orange Sauce