Roasted Salmon with Shallots, Grapefruit & Ginger

This post is written by one of my besties – Jenny Spurgin who is amazing cook!

Guest Post: Alaskan Jen
Roasted Salmon with Shallots, Grapefruit & Ginger 
Adapted from Ellie Krieger, Food Network – Makes 3 servings, 6 WW P+/serving

In tribute to my college nickname, and as a result of the salmon that is still in my freezer from this summer, a fish recipe seems like an appropriate contribution to Megan’s terrific blog! So last night I tried a new recipe to break out of my fish traditions. I found this one online from Food Network’s Ellie Krieger and tweaked it a little to my taste. I made Israeli couscous and asparagus on the side… a lot of asparagus to be precise. They were good complements as the grapefruit and ginger in the sauce were potent! I poured the sauce over the whole piece of salmon and it steeped into the couscous (yum). I was happy that even with fish that was, ahem, less than catch-of-the-day, the fish tasted great and the sauce was bright and spicy.

Salmon (roughly 12oz)
Salt & pepper
2 grapefruits
Olive oil
1 shallot
1 small (1-2 in) piece of ginger root
1 tbsp honey
Sprinkle of cayenne (it comes through nicely with the citrus so it doesn’t take much)
2 tbsp lemon juice
3 basil leaves

1. Trim and clean the salmon, dry with a paper towel (if moist). Season with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper and put in a roasting pan in a 350 degree oven until cooked through (but not overdone!). For the piece of salmon I used, this took around 20 minutes.
2. While the salmon is baking, juice one of the grapefruit, including the pulp, but making sure to separate any seeds (juicing over a small mesh sieve works great and you can pull out and keep the pulp). With the second grapefruit, cut out the citrus segments. If you’ve never done it before, the best way is to cut the top and bottom of the fruit off (just through the skin) and then cut down the sides of the grapefruit removing the peel and white pith. Then, cut along both sides of each of the little membranes that separate the grapefruit segments, creating little grapefruit slices. Set these and the juice aside.
3. Slice the shallot thinly, peel and grate the ginger root and thinly slice the basil leaves and set aside.
4. Heat about 2 tsp of olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. When the oil is warm, add the shallot and saute until browning slightly. Next, add the grapefruit juice & pulp, grated ginger, honey, cayenne and lemon juice. Stir around and let the sauce simmer and reduce.
5. Pull the salmon out when it is done.
6. Finish the sauce by putting the grapefruit segments and basil leaves in and stirring around until they are warm and incorporated.
7. Pour the sauce over the salmon and serve!

I really liked the combination of the salmon and the couscous. I might even try making a couscous with a similar base just for the strong and unique flavor as a side dish for a more subtle main course. Enjoy!

Phad Thai

This post is a guest post by the fabulous Christina Grob! She used the phad thai prepared paste from Thai Curry Simple (with locations on capitol hill or the international district.) I’ve used the curry paste in a previous post!

Chicken Phad Thai
Rice Noodles (8 ounces)
Phad Thai Paste from Thai Curry Simple (2 packets)
2 chicken breasts, thinly sliced
2 eggs
2 cloves garlic
2 T olive oil
1 1/2 C bean sprouts
1/4 C cilantro, chopped
1/4 C peanuts, chopped
lime wedges
Sriracha or hot chili sauce (to taste)
Prepare the noodles:
In a large pot, bring water to a boil.  Remove from heat, add dried rice noodles.  Give a quick stir, then let sit for 5-6 minutes. Noodles should still be slightly chewy – do not let the sit too long, or they will turn to mush.  Drain and set aside.
Stir Fry:
In a wok, add olive oil – should be very hot.  Add garlic, stir for 15 – 20 seconds, add chicken and stir fry until just done.  Push chicken to the side of the wok, add eggs and scramble. Stir chicken and scrambled eggs together, then add prepared rice noodles, packets of phad thai paste, Sriracha, and 1 cup of the bean sprouts.  Stir fry together until well mixed, about 3 – 5 minutes.
To Serve:
Add stir fry to bowl, squeeze lime over noodles, garnish with a pinch of fresh cilantro, 1 T of chopped peanuts, and a few of the remaining bean sprouts.
To Eat:
Fork (or chopsticks) to mouth, not that hard!

My Impromptu lunch…

This blog entry was written by a good friend and co-worker of mine, Christina Grob!  

What to do with a bunch of leftovers?  Last night I had chicken & quinoa for dinner and had lots left over, so decided I’ll try something new.  I’ve always been really suspicious of quinoa – I mean, what the heck is it?  It smells kinda funky in its raw state, but once it starts cooking, has a nice nutty smell and is surprisingly tasty.  I’m also really weird about textures, but this passed my texture test.  And, it’s super good for you (check out this article  I’m not a huge fan of reheated chicken (or reheated meat of any kind), so I’m forever trying to make cold chicken taste more interesting. This is what I came up with!

Lime and Cilantro Chicken Quinoa Salad (serves 1)

1 cooked chicken breast, cubed
1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1/2 – 3/4 C cold quinoa, already prepared (I cooked mine in chicken broth instead of water)
1/8 C cilantro, chopped
1 wedge of lime

I mixed the first 4 ingredients together, then squeezed the lime on top.  It was GREAT!  The cilantro and lime gave it such a fresh flavor that I actually enjoyed my leftovers more than the original dinner last night.  Next time, I’ll try with a red pepper just to make it a little more colorful!