Friday, November 19, 2010

Spice Rubbed Salmon

It's Official! Am in love with Salmon....

After my first attempt at Salmon, which was a total hit (Masala Baked Salmon)...I decided to invest some more time into finding interesting Salmon recipes....and there were sooooo many! It is always exciting to see different flavors being used in different parts of the world and how different combinations can result in mind-blowing outcomes!

Let me share this really different recipe, which I came across on the cooking channel. The finished dish involves a spicy, crusty and crunchy salmon coating which when cut into, gives way to a juicy, soft salmon!..Heaven!

Here is what you need...

Serves: 1 or 2 people
Level: Easy

0.5 lb salmon fillet (preferably wild caught with skin on)
15 - 20 curry leaves
1 tblsp mustard seeds
0.5 tsp asafoetida
2 tsp garam masala
Salt to taste

Step 1 - Wash the salmon fillet thoroughly and wipe them dry. Apply salt to the fillet and let them sit aside for a few minutes. Wipe the curry leaves and lay them over a tissue paper to dry off. We do not want to use wet curry leaves for this recipe, as we need to make a dry spice rub.

Step 2 - In a small blender bowl, grind together the curry leaves, mustard seeds, asafoetida and garam masala. Grind it to a coarse powder. Make sure you try to keep the ingredients as dry as possible. You dont want to end up with a paste here.

Step 3 - Apply the rub from step 2 to the salmon fillet and gently press it down, so it form a nice coat over the salmon. Make sure you cover both sides.

Step 4 - Heat a pan on medium heat. When it is hot, spray some cooking oil and gently place the salmon fillet over it. Start off with first placing the skin side down on the pan. Let it cook without moving it around for 3 mins. Spray some more oil on the top of the fillet. Then flip the salmon gently with tongs. The salmon is fragile at this stage. You dont want to break the pieces apart. So be as gentle as possible. Then let the salmon cook for another 3 to 4 mins on the other side. At any stage you think the salmon is burning or looks real dry, spray some oil on it. You might need to spray the oil a couple of times especially if you dont have a good non-stick pan. Remove off the pan when the salmon gets to a nice pink color and the crust of the fish is deep dark brown in color.

Serve hot with a gentle squeeze of lime.

You could always bake salmon to make it even more healthier. But for this particular recipe, I am not too sure if the salmon would taste as good, if it dint have a crusty covering..
Never the less, if you do bake it, don't forget to let me know how it turns out...:)

Happy cooking everyone!

How to know if salmon is cooked?
Try lightly poking it with a knife. The knife should slide in without any efforts, if the salmon is cooked well.
The salmon also changes to a nice pink color.
It also oozes out a white substance as it starts cooking. Make sure you see that, especially if you want to have the salmon well-done!

Health benefits of salmon? (Source: Internet)
Salmon is very nutritious. It is high in protein and the "good fats". It has a lot of omega-3 fatty acids.
Did you know that a 4 oz serving of wild salmon provides a full day's requirement of vitamin D? It is one of the few foods that can make that claim. That same piece of fish contains over half of the necessary B12, niacin and selenium and is an excellent source of B6 and magnesium.

Omega-3 fats seem to primarily work through reducing inflammation in our bodies. Inflammation is turning out to be at the base of many health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancers and arthritis. Omega-3 also helps prevent the blood clots which cause many strokes.

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