Open-Faced Salmon & Avocado BLT’s

Open-faced salmon and avocado BLT's.

Open-faced salmon and avocado BLT’s.

Our weekly menus this summer have been plentiful in these two things:  hearty sandwiches and salads.  Somehow they seem like the right thing to have on a warm day when cooking is out of the question, so I’m always on the lookout for new combinations, especially for sandwiches.  I want them to be dinner-worthy which means they need to include the major components of a meal, be filling and nutritious.  This combination of tender salmon fillet with fresh tomatoes and lettuce plus crispy bacon on a focaccia roll is perfect.

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I made this one evening a few weeks ago, on a night when I was starving, so I don’t know if I was having an exceptionally good cooking night or if I was just incredibly  hungry, but it was just soooo good.

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OPEN-FACED SALMON & AVOCADO BLT’S

Yield:    Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 slices diagonally cut ciabatta bread or 2 large ciabatta rolls, cut in half

    Get all the vegetables ready.

    Get all the vegetables ready.

  • 4 center-cut bacon slices
  • 4 (4-ounce) salmon fillets, skinned, about 3/4-inch thick
  • 1/4 cup canola mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon minced chives, or green onions, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 4 (1/2-inch-thick) tomato slices, halved
  • 1/2 peeled ripe avocado, cut into 8 wedges
  • 4 lemon wedges for serving

Directions:

1.  Preheat broiler to high.

2.  Arrange bread or rolls on a baking sheet; broil 1 minute or until lightly toasted.

3.  Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan.  Add salmon fillets to drippings in pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Cook bacon till crisp, then cook salmon in the drippings.

Cook bacon till crisp, then cook salmon in the drippings.

4.  Combine canola mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon water, 2 teaspoons minced chives, and Dijon mustard in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.

5.  Spread mayonnaise mixture evenly over bread slices; top each with 1 lettuce leaf, 1 bacon slice,  2 halved tomato slices, 2 avocado slices and 1 fish fillet.

Building the sandwich layer by layer.

Building the sandwich layer by layer.

Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 teaspoon chives.  Serve with lemon wedges.

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SOURCE:    Eating Well

 

Glazed Salmon with Couscous

Glazed Salmon and Couscous

Glazed Salmon and Couscous

Let’s go fishing!   I’ll bring the fishing poles if you’ll bring your boat.  I’ll pack a picnic lunch and some cold drinks,  and enough insect repellent to take care of any bugs within miles.  Oh, yeah, bait!  Would you stop on your way to the river and pick some up? Oh, and be sure to bring your camera.  We have to get some pics of our catch to post on F.B.

That reminds me—Do you know how to bait the hook?    Oh, me neither.   Well, I guess we’ll need to find someone to help us with that.   On second thought,  why don’t we just go shopping instead and stop by the local fish market for a nice piece of salmon on our way home.  Sounds like a plan to me 🙂

When we get home it will only take a few minutes to get dinner ready because the salmon is so easy to prepare with this recipe.

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GLAZED SALMON

Yield:  Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1  1/4 cups water
  • 3/8 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 3/8 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 cup uncooked couscous  (In my version, I used the larger size pearl couscous, and followed cooking time on the package.)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

    Whole-grain mustard and chopped shallots.

    Whole-grain mustard and chopped shallots.

  • 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons chopped shallots
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets, about 1 inch thick
  • cooking spray

Directions:

1.  Preheat the broiler.  Line a jelly-roll pan with foil, and coat with cooking spray.

2.  Bring 1 1/4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan.  Stir in 1/8 tsp. salt, 1/8 tsp. pepper, and couscous; cover.  Remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes.  Stir in dill, rind, and juice.  (If using Israeli or pearl couscous, following cooking directions on package.)

3.  Heat a small saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add olive oil and butter; swirl until butter melts.  Add shallots; cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add wine to pan; bring to a boil.  cook 2 minutes;  stir in mustard and brown sugar.  Remove pan from heat.

Sautéing the shallots.

Sautéing the shallots.

4.  Arrange salmon fillets, skin sides down on the prepared jelly-roll pan.  Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 tsp, salt and remaining 1/4 tsp. pepper.  Spread half of mustard mixture evenly over fillets.  Broil 6 minutes or until desired degree of doneness.  Spread remaining half of mustard mixture over fillets.  Serve salmon with couscous.

You can round out this meal nicely with the addition of a green vegetable such as haricots verts, or asparagus.

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Salmon with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Onions

Salmon with Roast Tomatoes and Onions

Salmon with Roast Tomatoes and Onions

This recipe is from the archives, published back before I got a good camera, so the pictures didn’t do it justice.  I cooked it again just recently, and appreciated once more what a great recipe it is, so here it is again, updated.   The roast tomatoes and onions produce a tasty sauce that enhances the salmon and keeps it moist.  It all gets baked together in the oven and makes a great weeknight meal.

Salmon is a fish that is highly  recommended for our diet, because of all its heart healthy ingredients and so I try to include it quite often. The problem for me—because I’m someone who likes a lot of variety—is the few ways I know how to prepare it.  And so I’m always on the look-out for new recipes that are easy, without a long list of ingredients, and taste good.  The following recipe is one that meets all those criteria.  Roasting the tomatoes and onions first brings out their sweetness, and creates a flavorful sauce that enhances the salmon.  Serve it with couscous or rice and a green vegetable for a perfect entree.

Salmon with Roasted  Cherry Tomatoes and Onions

SERVES  2

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes

    These are compari tomatoes that I roasted with sliced scallions.

    These are compari tomatoes that I roasted with sliced scallions. and garlic.

  • 1 large onion, cut in wedges
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 ( 6 0z.) salmon fillets, about 1 inch thick, or one large salmon fillet
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray a jellyroll pan or shallow baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, place tomatoes, onions, and remainder of ingredients thru garlic.  Toss to coat vegetables.
Tomatoes and seasonings ready for roasting.

Tomatoes and seasonings ready for roasting

3.   Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, stirring once during that time.

Lay salmon on top of tomato mixture.

Lay salmon on top of tomato mixture.  

4.  Place salmon on top of tomato mixture, and bake an additional 10 – 12 minutes, until fish flakes easily with a fork.

5.  Serve the tomato mixture over the fish.  Drizzle with lemon juice.

Serve salmon with tomato sauce spooned over the top.

Serve salmon with tomato sauce spooned over the top.

SOURCE:  Cooking Light Magazine

Grilled Salmon Kebabs

Grilled Salmon Kebabs

Grilled Salmon Kebabs

These grilled salmon kebabs are so easy to make and delicious to eat–and loaded with omega 3’s in every bite.  Isn’t it super when something you love to eat is also good for you?   Seasoned with fresh herbs, lemon, and spices and grilled to perfection.

I made these this past weekend on a really hot day, when I did not want to be indoors cooking at the stove. I served them with a cold salad  (white bean and radish salad, tomorrow’s post)  and a quick potato hash and we loved it all.  It was the perfect meal to eat outdoors.

If you are growing your own fresh herbs in the garden, this is a great way to use some oregano.  It is combined with cumin and sesame seeds, and sprinkled over the kebabs after brushing them with a little olive oil.  In between each piece of salmon is a thin slice of lemon that makes the kebabs look nice, but also bathes the fish in its juice while cooking.  I plan to make this dish again this summer and perhaps vary the kind of fish used.

GRILLED SALMON KEBABSIMG_4406

Servings:  4   (2 kebabs each)

Ingredients:

  • 16 bamboo skewers soaked in water 1 hour
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 Tsp. sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1  1/2 pounds skinless wild salmon fillet, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 lemons, sliced into very thin rounds
  • olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

1.  Heat the grill on medium heat and spray the grates with oil.  (Or wipe the grates with a paper towel sprayed with oil).

2.  Mix oregano, sesame seeds, cumin and red pepper flakes in a small bowl to combine;  set spice mixture aside.

3.  Beginning and ending with salmon, thread salmon and folded lemon flies onto 8 pairs of parallel skewers to make 8 kebabs total.**  Brush with oil and season with reserved spice mixture.

Alternate salmon and lemon slices onto double skewers.

Alternate salmon and lemon slices onto double skewers.

4.  Grill, turning occasionally, until fish is opaque throughout, 5 – 8 minutes.

Cooking on the grill!

Cooking on the grill!

**Here’s a trick: By threading the salmon onto parallel skewers they won’t flip and spin every time you turn them over.

Grilled Salmon Kebabs

Grilled Salmon Kebabs

SOURCE:  adapted slightly from Bon Appetit

Pappardelle with Salmon and Leeks

Every country has its pasta dishes, and we here in the U.S. are fortunate in having an abundance of pasta varieties to incorporate into our cooking.  Pappardelle, native to Italy, is a type of pasta made from eggs and whole wheat flour, then cut into wide ribbons, so it provides a lot of substance and chew-factor.  It you are looking for a healthy pasta dish, you won’t go wrong with this one.

Pappardelle, with salmon and leeks.

Pappardelle, with salmon and leeks.

This dish makes good use of leeks,  a great spring vegetable, and salmon.  If leeks are not available where you live, you could substitute any mild flavored onion.  Another nice addition would be baby spinach that gets just wilted by the heat of the pasta.  When I eat this meal I feel that I’ve indulged my craving for pasta and treated myself to something especially healthful and nutritious.

PAPPARDELLE WITH SALMON AND LEEKS

YIELD:    Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 lb. uncooked pappardelle pasta

    Pappardelle,  wide pasta ribbons.

    Pappardelle, wide pasta ribbons.

  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2  large leeks, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2  teaspoons minced fresh savory, or 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • 3/4  teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine  (or chicken broth)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted chicken broth
  • 1 Tablespoon minced flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh lemon rind
  • 1  ( 1 lb. salmon fillet ), fresh or frozen
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter

1.  Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid; keep pasta and cooking liquid warm.

2.  Heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add leeks, savory, and 1/2 teaspoon salt;  cook 15 minutes or until leeks are translucent, stirring occasionally.

Saute leeks in olive oil.

Saute leeks in olive oil.

Increase heat to medium-high.  Add wine; cook 1 minute.  Add chicken broth; bring to a simmer.  Remove from heat; stir in pasta, reserved cooking liquid, parsley, and lemon rind.

Cook salmon until golden and browned, but still moist.

Cook salmon until golden and browned, but still moist.

3.  Sprinkle salmon fillet with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper.  Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add remaining 1 Tablespoon olive oil and the butter;  swirl until butter melts.  Add salmon, and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.  Break the salmon into large chunks.  Arrange 1 cup of the pasta mixture on each of 6 plates, and top evenly with salmon.  Serve immediately.

I added asparagus to the menu to round out the meal.

I added asparagus to the menu to round out the meal.

SOURCE:   The Glorious Pasta of Italy,   by Domenica Marchetti

Maple Soy Salmon with Roast Cauliflower

Maple-Soy Salmon

Maple-Soy Salmon

Since I went  a little hog-wild at the supermarket and purchased a lot of different forms of citrus fruits, now I’m in the situation of trying to use them in as many ways as possible.  Eating them peeled and sectioned “out of hand” and in fruit salads is a given.  A tangerine, a Mineola, or a clementine  make a quick snack any time.  I’ve already shared with you my recipe for Lemon Cream Squares here, so this week I will be featuring recipes that contain other forms of citrus.

Roast Cauliflower with Clementines, Cranberries, and Pistachios

Roast Cauliflower with Clementines, Cranberries, and Pistachios

One of the recent dinners I made was this one, Soy Maple Salmon with Roast Cauliflower.  Even  though you see no mention of a citrus in the title it’s there none the less, in both the salmon part and the cauliflower.  We thought this meal was fabulous and one that I want to repeat again soon.  During this season when seafood is also plentiful, I try to prepare a fish item at least once per week.  The total calories for these two items is under 400 calories, and only 18 Gm. Carbohydrate.  There is a bargain of goodness in this meal any way you look at it.

In planning my time to prepare this meal I found that if I roasted the cauliflower and made a salad while the salmon was marinating, I could then pop the salmon in the hot oven, finish the cauliflower dish and dress the  salad.

SOY-MAPLE SALMON

SERVINGS:    4

Marinating the salmon.

Marinating the salmon.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2  Tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2  Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 4   4-5 ounce salmon fillets

1.   Mix all the ingredients (except salmon) plus  2 Tablespoons water in a large bowl or zip-lock baggie.  Add the salmon and turn to coat.  Allow this to marinate in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes.

2.   When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 400*F.   Coat a rimmed pan with cooking spray.  Drain the fish, season with salt and pepper and place on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake until slightly golden and beginning to crisp around the edges, 8 – 10 minutes.  The salmon should be moist, and flake easily with a fork.

Note:  Salmon will be baked after cauliflower at a lower oven temperature.

ROAST CAULIFLOWER WITH CLEMENTINES, CRANBERRIES AND PISTACHIOS

SERVINGS:   4

INGREDIENTS

Cauliflower brushed with oil and ready for the oven.

Cauliflower brushed with oil and ready for the oven.

  • 1 small head cauliflower, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slabs
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 clementines, zested and segmented
  • 2 Tablespoons dried cranberries
  • 2 Tablespoons whole or chopped pistachios
  • 1 teaspoon zest from clementines
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1.    Preheat oven to 450*F.  Arrange cauliflower on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer and brush with 2 Tablespoons olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Roast, flipping once, about half way through cooking time, until tender and a little charred at edges, about 25 minutes.

Cauliflower after roasting.

Cauliflower after roasting.

2.  Transfer to a serving platter with clementine segments and cover with foil to keep warm.  Turn down oven heat to 400*F to cook salmon.

3.  In a small saucepan, heat the remaining 1 Tablespoon olive oil, add the cranberries, pistachios, clementine zest, and a little salt and pepper to taste. Stir to heat through.  When ready to serve, drizzle over the cauliflower and clementines.  Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

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This dinner entree is a mash-up of two recipes that I put together with some major modifications.

SOURCES:   Salmon:   Food Network Magazine;   Cauliflower:  Whole Living Magazine

Wasabi Salmon

As I have mentioned before, we eat salmon quite frequently, and so I am always open to different ways to prepare it.  This version of salmon was prepared for  me and my husband last summer by a family member whom we were visiting.  We thought it was delicious:  crispy around the edges, while remaining moist inside, and baked on a bed of vegetables that consisted of strips of multi-colored peppers and sliced onions.  Potatoes baked in the oven along with the fish, and a green salad made a complete meal with very little “hands-on” time.

I have cooked salmon this way several times since last summer and each time I vary the vegetables depending on what is available.  One vegetable I really like is fennel.  I think it is an under used vegetable.  It is delicious raw in salads with its faint anise flavor, but when it is cooked that flavor is not noticeable .  It is most like cooked celery, and blends very well with other vegetables, particularly onions.  When I made this dish most recently, I combined peppers with fennel and onions.  In an effort to save time and labor, I purchased a mixture of red, yellow and orange pepper strips from the grocery store salad bar.  This is a dish that goes together without a recipe, so there are no exact measurements. This is how I proceed;  adjust amounts to your taste.

INGREDIENTS

Serves  4

  • 1 fillet of salmon weighing between 1 – 1.5 pounds
  • Gold’s Wasabi Sauce with Ginger
  • seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay
  • 2 cups pepper strips in assorted colors
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, stalks, fronds, and core removed;  thinly sliced.
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced.
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray a baking dish with baking spray.  I used a 7″ x 11″ pan, whatever your salmon will fit into.

Layer the peppers, onion and fennel in the baking dish.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Drizzle melted buyer over the top.

Lay the salmon fillet on top of the vegetables.  Sprinkle with seafood seasoning, about 1/2 teaspoon.  Then “frost” the salmon with the Wasabi Sauce so its pretty well covered.  Place in a 400 degree oven and bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour, depends on thickness of  your salmon fillet.  Test at 45 minutes by piercing with the tip of a knife.  If fish flakes easily its done.  Vegetables should be tender.

A glass of crisp Chardonnay goes very well with this dish!

SOURCE:   A Carolyn Original