Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Baked Salmon over Herbed Mashed Peas

It sure seems like I would have posted about this one in the past year or so, but upon scanning the archives I see that I didn't! Hm...well, the peas are just too yummy not to post now. The original recipe is from Cooking Light and calls for pan-frying the salmon. A stinky method that we do not practice in the Ponder/Butler house. Baking is so much easier, so into the oven it goes at high heat on a foil-lined sheet for only about 10 minutes. Done. No pan to clean either.
The other change I made from the original recipe is using regular ol' onions in lieu of the pricier leeks. It's what I had on hand and since I had to buy the fresh herbs already, I wasn't up for a 10 dollar side of peas. By all means use the leek if you'd like, just sub a cup of leek for the onion.
Oh another thing...the recipe calls for a 10 oz bag of peas, I had a 16 oz. bag, so just adjust up with the herbs etc. if you find yourself in the same position. FYI, more of these peas is a good thing.

Fennel is a nice complement to the tarragon in the peas, so I made a composed salad of thinly sliced fennel bulb, orange slices and avocado on a bed of bibb lettuce leaves. Since I had plenty of tarragon left from the peas, I made a dressing of canola, stone ground mustard, lemon juice, tarragon, s & p and a dash of agave nectar.

Baked Salmon over Herbed Mashed Peas:
(Cooking Light)

1 cup onion, chopped
1 tsp butter
1 10 oz bag of frozen petite green peas (calls for thawed, but I just throw in frozen and cook a little longer)
1/4 cup chicken broth or water
1 Tbs chiffonade of fresh basil
2 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
2 Tbs lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt (+more for salmon)
1/4 tsp pepper (+more for salmon)
~1 lb Wild Alaskan salmon
olive oil

Preheat oven to 450.
Saute onion in butter on medium heat for about 5-6 minutes.
Add peas and broth/water and cook another 5 (if thawed) minutes, or until peas are soft.
Whiz pea mixture, herbs and lemon juice in a food processor until smooth.
Stir in 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper.
Set aside until fish is done.

Place salmon on a foil-lined baking sheet and lightly coat with olive oil.
Salt and pepper generously, then bake for 10 minutes per inch of thickness.

Plate salmon atop a bed of mashed peas and serve with a lemon wedge...or topped with a drib of your salad dressing like I did. :-)

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