Tag Archives: adventure

When I think of Alaska, many things come to mind: adventure, the last frontier, uncharted waters, cold (even though I think North Dakota temperatures are sometimes way worse), Sarah Palin, gold, but most importantly exploration. This new year is marked with more opportunities for exploring more of myself and more courage to try new foods and recipes. 

The beauty of Alaska is uncomparable to any other state and it’s access to abundant wildlife is remarkable. I actually have been to Alaska way back in the day, but unfortunately I have no memory of it (I was 2). My sister had the opportunity to visit Alaska last spring and the photos she brought home were spectacular. Not only that, she brought us fresh caught Alaskan halibut too! Although this fish waited patiently in my freezer for the past few months, it still tasted as just as fresh as the day it was caught.

I had fun using my ulu that my sister got for me, which is an all-purpose knife traditionally used by Inuit, Yup’ik and Aleut women. It is a very diverse tool, as it was used for almost everything; skinning animals, cutting food, and chopping up blocks of snow for igloos.

I wanted this halibut to resonate clean, healthy flavors so I used dill and lemon to add to the real star of this dish, alaskan halibut. The tomatoes added beautiful color and texture to the flaky fish. So what new avenues do you plan to explore this year? A new place? A new recipe? A new outlook on your health? The new year offers a great place to start a new and begin with a clean slate. The official state motto of Alaska is “North to the future”, what will guide your compass this year to your future explorations?


Alaskan Halibut with Lemon Dill Sauce

1/2 c. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 2 lemons
2 T. lemon zest
2 T. chopped dill
2 c. cherry tomatoes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut halibut into 1 inch filets. Rinse and pat dry with a paper towel. Mix olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, and dill in a small bowl. Sprinkle filets with salt and pepper and place in a cast iron skillet. Toss cherry tomatoes in lemon dill mixture and pour mixture over halibut filets. Cook 15 minutes until fish is cooked through. Broil for 3-6 minutes so filets are nicely browned on top. 


~Alaskan photos courtesy of Kelsey Ellis


As June comes to a close (I can’t believe it’s July) I wanted to share a little adventure we took one afternoon. Sharing experiences with your children or family is so important on so many levels. Sometimes life consumes us and we are busy with school, sports, work, and activities, that we don’t take the time to stop and smell the roses. Being mindful about your time with loved ones in so crucial. In today’s society where we are extremely connected on an electronic level, making memories “unplugged” can have huge benefits for your mental health. 

Our mini adventure went like this. We went down to a friend’s ranch one afternoon to pick JUNEBERRIES! Juneberries are a tasty berry native to North America. They are also sometimes known as saskatoon berries and they grown in the northern United States and Canada. They look similar to a blueberry but taste like a mild blackberry. We had fun picking these (and eating them), although it did take some time to fill our big basket!

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Once we got home, I was so excited to cook something with these delicious berries. I think they would be delicious in a pie, muffins, bread, cake, kuchen, but I ultimately decided to make a cobbler. This cobbler is a cinch to whip up! First we made the biscuit topping, then simmered the berries with a mixture orange zest, orange juice, and sugar. Each mini skillet was then filled with the berry goodness and topped with the biscuit mix to bake! We added ice cream on our cobblers. These mini skillets are perfect portions for guests or kiddos because everyone gets their own! I found my mini skillets here. You could also adapt this recipe and make one large cobbler too. Adventure awaits, what adventure will you take today?

Special thanks to the Schettler family for the yummy juneberries and lots of exciting adventure!


Juneberry Cobbler Mini Skillets

1 c. plus 2 T. flour
3/4 c. plus 3 T. sugar
1 1/4 t. baking powder
3 T. cold, unsalted butter 
1 egg
1/4 c. heavy cream
3 c. juneberries
1 t. orange zest
1/2 c. orange juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the 1 cup of flour with 3 tablespoons of sugar and the baking powder. Add the butter and using your hands, mix the mixture until it resembles course meal. Add the egg and cream and mix to form a soft dough. 

In a cast iron skillet combine the juneberries, 3/4 cup sugar, orange zest, and 2 tablespoons of flour. Stir to coat, pour over the orange juice and simmer at medium low heat until the fruit mixture boils. Once boiling, simmer for two minutes more and remove from the heat. Coat each mini skillet with the fruit mixture to fill the bottom. Add tablespoon size balls of the dough to the top of each skillet. There should be 4 to 5 dough drops on each. Cook mini skillets for 18-20 minutes, or until the dough is browned on the top. If cooking in a large cast iron skillet, cook for 16-18 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm, with your favorite ice cream if desired. 


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