Salmon with Anchovy Garlic Butter

I took a break from vegan cooking last weekend to make this delicious, flavor-packed dish. Anchovy tends to freak people out for some reason, but the truth is, it’s such a great umami-rich ingredient. It adds awesome flavor and a little goes a long way. Alongside garlic, capers and lemon in this delicious butter sauce, it’s a star, and dresses up a perfectly cooked salmon to make it dinner-party worthy. I served this over Israeli couscous, an awesome grain-slash-pasta, cooked in vegetable stock for some extra flavor. You can also use chicken stock. TW’s Tips
  • Cooking the fish on high heat on the stovetop creates quite a bit of smoke, so get your hood on high. Make sure the pan is really hot before you add the fish, otherwise it won’t crisp the way it should.
  • After reading some of the comments on this recipe, I took their advice and opted for a lower temp and slightly longer cook time in the oven. I did convection 200 degrees for 15 minutes, and the fish came out perfectly cooked and super moist.
  • Once you remove the fish from the pan, spoon out most of the sauce but keep some and quickly wilt some spinach in it to serve as a side dish.
This is totally delicious and super fast as well. Enjoy!
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 anchovy fillets, minced
  • 1 fat garlic clove, minced (or 2 small ones)
  • ½ teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 (6- to 8-ounce) skin-on salmon fillets
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers, patted dry
  • ½ lemon
  • Fresh chopped parsley, for serving
Directions Heat oven to 400 degrees. [See tip above: I recommend a lower temp.] In a small bowl, mash together butter, anchovies, garlic, salt and pepper. In a large ovenproof skillet, melt about half the anchovy butter. Add fish, skin side down. Cook for 3 minutes over high heat to brown the skin, spooning some pan drippings over the top of the fish as it cooks. Add capers to bottom of pan and transfer to oven. Roast until fish is just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove pan from oven and add remaining anchovy butter to pan to melt. Place salmon on plates and spoon buttery pan sauce over the top. Squeeze the lemon half over the salmon and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve.
Advertisements

Everything Salmon Burgers

IMG_3804

It’s summer, so burgers are a must. But I’ve been feeling a bit beef-ed out lately (yes, that’s a term), so this salmon burger definitely appealed to me. The recipe (a Rachael Ray) incorporates the everything bagel (poppy seed, sesame seeds, onion flakes) into the salmon mixture, perfect for all my everything bagel lovers, and the scallion cream cheese topping is a killer. So. Good.

IMG_3806

 

IMG_3805Even better, these cook really fast and are a great, healthy alternative to the regular burger.

TW’s Tips

  • Make sure the cream cheese is fully softened before mixing the topping — leave it on the counter for at least 30 minutes-1 hour. Otherwise it won’t mix easily.
  • I hear some places actually sell everything bagel seasoning — you could substitute that here for the seeds, etc.
  • Don’t overcook the burgers. I like my salmon medium rare; don’t be afraid to keep it pink in the middle.
  • Serve with a salad or potato salad — I wasn’t a big fan of this one so I’m not sharing the recipe, but this is one of my favorites.

Everything Salmon Burgers

Ingredients

  • 1 1⁄2 lbs skinless salmon fillet, cut into large chunks
  • 1 tablespoon grill seasoning (recommended-McCormick’s Montreal Steak seasoning)
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seed
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons dried onion flakes
  • 1⁄4 cup fresh dill
  • Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1⁄2 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 4 crusty kaiser rolls (or other rolls of choice)
  • Green leaf lettuce
  • Sliced beefsteak tomato
  • Sliced red onion

Directions

Place the salmon in a food processor and pulse to coarse grind the fish.Transfer the fish to a mixing bowl and season with the grill seasoning, poppy and sesame seeds, onion flakes, and dill. Use your hands to mix, then divide into 4 equal portions and form each portion into a patty.

Heat a about a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
Cook the burgers for 3 minutes on each side for a pink center, 4-5 minutes on each side for fully cooked.

While the burgers cook, combine the cream cheese with the scallions. Fold in the sour cream and lemon juice. Split and lightly toast the rolls.

Serve the burgers on the toasted buns topped with lettuce, tomato, red onion, and some of the cream cheese sauce.

Peppered Salmon with Creamy Chickpea Dressing and Fresh Greens

IMG_0807

I’ve been trying to eat more fish/seafood lately, and salmon is one of my favorites. It’s not too expensive, not too fishy and can be really beautiful when cooked correctly. This recipe from Tyler Florence is a great one to impress company — while not being too hard so you won’t be in the kitchen all night. The salmon is crusted in freshly ground black pepper and coriander seeds, so it’s crunchy on the outside and (ideally) still a little rare on the inside. Buy high quality fish and this will be a hit.

IMG_0804

The salmon is served on top of a puree of chickpeas spiced up with cumin, and an herby salad of spinach, mint and dill alongside, dressed simply in lemon and oil, salt and pepper. Get a little bit of salad, chickpea and salmon in each bite, and it’s perfect! The salad is nice and fresh and dill always goes great with fish, and it gives it a nice cool, crunchy kick. Delicious!

TW’s Tips

  • Coriander seeds: find them in the bulk spice area at a Whole Foods or Sprouts, or they often come in a jar in the spice aisle as well. It’s critical to use freshly ground seeds — NOT the ground spice. You don’t get the same texture or flavor.
  • Grinding the spices — don’t attempt a mortar and pestle. I tried it and wanted to cry. I have an electric spice grinder that I use, or clean out your coffee grinder REALLY well and use that.
  • You can do skin or off on the fish — I’ve done it both ways. It’s nice to get some crispy skin if you like that, but if not, it’s still good.
  • The recipe doesn’t call for heating up the chickpeas, but I didn’t like them room temp. (I’m one of those people who needs their food either really hot or cold — not in between.) I throw them in a little saucepan and heat them through.

Peppered Salmon with Creamy Chickpea Dressing and Fresh Greens
(Serves 4)

Ingredients 
Salmon
  • 1/4 cup black peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup coriander seeds
  • 1 pound salmon fillet, skin on
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • lemon wedges for serving
Vinaigrette

  • 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Salad

  • 1 bag (10 ounces) baby spinach
  • 1 bunch of fresh mint
  • 1 bunch of fresh dill
Directions

  • Put the peppercorns and coriander in a clean spice grinder and pulse to a coarse grind. Pour the mixture out onto a large plate. Roll the salmon in the spices until coated all over.
  • Heat a 2-count of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the oil is smoking. Sprinkle the salmon with salt, add it to the pan and sear for 4 to 5 minutes to develop a good crust. Turn the fillet and cook 4 to 5 minutes on the other side, until the salmon begins to flake apart when gently prodded with a fork. Put the salmon on a plate, cover with foil and set aside at room temperature.
  • For the vinaigrette, open the can of chickpeas and dump it straight into a bowl, without draining.  Add the olive oil, cumin, paprika, lemon juice, and a little salt and pepper and stir that up. Spoon about half of the vinaigrette into a blender and puree; stir the puree back into the rest of the vinaigrette to thicken. (I heat this through on the stove — just throw in a pan and bring to a simmer.)
  • Toss spinach, mint, and dill in a bowl.
  • To serve, spoon the chickpea vinaigrette into the center of a platter. Set the salmon fillet on top and mound the spinach to one side. Serve with lemon wedges.

Salmon En Croute

I’ve never cooked anything “en croute” so I loved the idea of this salmon en croute, courtesy of Rachael Ray. First of all, it was a lighter version of your traditionally heavy pastry-encrusted foods (think beef Wellington or creamy chicken pot pie). Throw in some salmon instead and you don’t feel quite as guilty! Second, mushrooms were involved, one of my top faves. And third, it was kind of fancy and fun — something that could be a hit for a future dinner party.

And it did turn out looking impressive, if I don’t say so myself! The verdict — it was quite good. The mixture inside with the salmon — made up of mushroom, onions, lemon juice, dill, parsley and the odd-ball hard boiled egg — was tasty and went really well with the salmon, though I’m still on the fence about the egg. It was a liiiittle weird, but worked in a strange way. I also wasn’t wild about my choice of broccoli to accompany — next time I’d do green beans or sauteed spinach with some lemon. But the combo of the dill and lemon with the mushrooms and salmon, plus the crunch and richness of the pastry…it was an awesome combination of tastes and textures.

These tasted great straight out of the oven, but reheating them was problematic. I didn’t dare nuke them — it would have killed the crispiness of the pastry — but the oven dried out the salmon a bit and it wasn’t nearly as tender. So, I’d aim to cook just enough for one night’s meal.

TW’s Tips

  • Don’t be afraid to heap the mushroom mixture on the pastry dough. The “couple spoonfuls” Rachael calls for isn’t enough.
  • Buy your salmon without the skin — removing the skin is not fun.
  • I didn’t follow directions and flip the salmon over once I packaged it up so the seam was on the bottom — that would make it look a little nicer, especially if you cut 2-3 slits across the top with a knife before baking.
  • If I did this again, I wouldn’t cook the salmon as much ahead of time — just a quick sear — so it was medium when you cut through the pastry packet. Two minutes per side was too much for the thickness of my salmon.
  • This could be yummy if you made them as little mini bites for a cocktail party.
Bon appetit!

Salmon En Croute

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus some for drizzling
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/2 pound button mushrooms and stems, cleaned and chopped
  • 2 sprigs dill, chopped
  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped (a small handful)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, optional
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 6-ounce salmon filets, skin removed
  • 2 sheets frozen puff pastry, 11 x 17 inches, defrosted but still cold
  • 1 egg, beaten with a splash of water

Directions

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add oil, onions and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper, and sauté 10 -15 minutes or until the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated. Remove from heat and add to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add dill, parsley, lemon juice, mustard, hard-boiled egg, salt and pepper. Mix to combine.

Wipe out the pan you used for the mushrooms and return it to medium-high heat with a drizzle of EVOO. Season salmon with salt and pepper, and sear 1-2 minutes on each side in a drizzle of oil. Remove skillet from the heat.

Spread the puff pastry sheet onto a counter and roll to 1/8 of an inch thick. Cut in half.

On each rectangle of dough, place 2 spoonfuls of the mushroom mixture and top with salmon.

Starting with the corners, wrap dough over the salmon, creating a package.

Trim excess dough and seal with the egg water mixture using a pastry brush (leftover dough bits can be used to decorate the top of the packages).

Place sealed side down on a non-stick cookie sheet and make small slit in the top to let steam escape.

Brush with a light coating of the egg/water mixture to give it a nice sheen. Bake 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes, then serve.

From Rachael Ray “Just in Time”