Feeling a little gourmet…

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So what’s your definition of gourmet?  Not sure what it is for you, but tonight, my meal felt a little gourmet.  Maybe it was because it involved ingredients I don’t use often…yeah, I think that’s why.  I don’t normally go the “gourmet” route…unless I’m eating out, and someone else is preparing it for me.  Tonight it was all about the ingredients for me…I splurged just a little bit, but didn’t overdo it at all.

It started when I picked up a nice piece of wild sockeye salmon.  I have been looking forward to it all summer…apparently this salmon only runs for a short amount of time, according to the guy at the fish counter.  All the times I’ve had it (over the last couple of years) it’s been a treat.  It’s richer and firmer in texture than your typical pink salmon.  I just love it.

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I knew I wanted to keep things simple…I found this Alton Brown recipe for Broiled Sockeye Salmon with Citrus Glaze and went with it.  I reduced the sugar from 1/3 cup to 1/4 cup and a little less salt…it turned out wonderfully.  The lemon zest combined with the warm sweetness of brown sugar just rocked my world.  I paired it with a salad that I normally wouldn’t make at home, a tasty mix of greens topped with roasted asparagus, thin sliced red onion, farmer’s market cherry tomatoes and a homemade citrus balsamic vinaigrette…but thanks to a sale on watercress and arugula today at the store, it was inexpensive and absolutely delicious.

The vinaigrette was made with not so everyday ingredients but not totally foreign ingredients either.  Here’s my trick in finding “gourmet” ingredients that I normally don’t find at the grocery store…check the food sections of places like Home Goods and Marshalls.  That is where I pick up my grapeseed oil..along with infused balsamic vinegars and Herbes de Provence.  It’s a treat, and definitely worth it.

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And for those of you who have young children…I am asked often if my kids eat what I cook.  Well the answer is not always, but I sure do try.  Here is an example of what I will serve my kids on a night that I am making salmon or another fish…it’s not much additional effort and to me is a little more reasonable as far as getting them to try something new and something not so new.  It’s worth the effort of trying, even if it doesn’t go over well…like for instance, you all know my son loved these salmon tacos, but tonight had no interest in trying this broiled salmon. Kids will be kids I guess.  I don’t get it, but I lovingly made him eat his 5 bites and then he was done.  Like I said…I’m always trying…

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Oh and by the way…I just contributed my first post the the CBSNews Health blog. They featured my healthy version of a slider…Smoky BBQ Turkey Burger Sliders!  Check it out and let me know what you think!

Broiled Sockeye Salmon with Citrus Glaze

Recipe slightly adapted from Alton Brown, Food Network

(printable recipe)

1 side, skin-on, sockeye salmon, 1 1/2 to 2 pounds, pin bones removed
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Position a rack in the oven 3 inches from the broiler. Line a half sheet pan with aluminum foil and place the salmon on the pan.

Place the sugar, zest, salt, and pepper into the bowl of a small food processor and process for 1 minute or until well combined. Evenly spread the mixture onto the salmon and allow to sit for 45 minutes, at room temperature.  Sugar and lemon zest will combine and slightly liquify into a glaze.

Turn the oven on to the high broiler setting for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, place the salmon into the oven and broil for 6 to 8 minutes.  Remove the salmon from the oven and allow to rest, uncovered, for 8 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

Mixed Green Salad with Roasted Asparagus and Citrus Balsamic Vinaigrette

Recipe from Aggie’s Kitchen

(printable recipe)

1/4 cup citrus balsamic vinaigrette
1/3 cup grapeseed oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp Herbes de Provence
1 garlic clove, finely minced
good pinch sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Combine ingredients in a mason jar or tupperware container and shake, shake, shake until thickened. Store in fridge for up to 1 week.

Drizzle salad dressing over a plate of mixed greens (I used watercress and arugula), thin sliced onion, halved cherry tomatoes and roasted asparagus.

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23 Responses to “Feeling a little gourmet…”

  1. katie posted July 18, 2010 at 9:36 am

    One thing my kids (all girls) will eat is “pink fish.” In fact it’s often the best choice for them when we eat out since they typically won’t eat anything else.

  2. Jen posted July 18, 2010 at 10:17 am

    Your dinner looks delicious – I love sockeye salmon and this simple preparation looks perfect. Also, I love that you showed the kids plate. Although I don’t have children yet, I’m a big proponent of introducing them to new foods and not making a separate dinner for them.

  3. Erica posted July 18, 2010 at 11:04 am

    I’ve been seeing the signs for this salmon out at Publix. Looks like you made a truly beautiful meal with it. I was planning on roasting some asparagus tonight too. The perfect special topping on a salad. I was the pickiest kid. I would never eat fish. Glad your kiddos are way more adventurous than I was :) Hope you are enjoying your weekend.

  4. pegasuslegend posted July 18, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    I love this I make this kind of fish all the time, cant beat yours looks fabulous with these flavors wow~ and now I want to make this ~ awesome pictures

  5. Jamie posted July 18, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    You know how much we love salmon Aggie. I’m not sure if I’ve ever had the sockeye salmon. The one from Joe Patti’s is usually Norwegian salmon. I love the recipe you used. Wonderful “gourmet” meal!

  6. jenna posted July 18, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    Looks amazing!

  7. Sherri posted July 18, 2010 at 11:25 pm

    Great pictures and it looks very gourmet! I prefer the Wild Sockeye Salmon to the farm raised as well. I put my asparagus on the grill and it gives it a wonderful flavor that really accompanied the wonderful ingredients (love the grape seed oil). Thanks for sharing it was delicious.

  8. peachkins posted July 19, 2010 at 1:30 am

    WOW! It looks really fantastic,Aggie..

  9. Jenn's Food Journey posted July 19, 2010 at 9:25 am

    Wow, that plate looks incredible! I love any kind of fish! Congrats on your recipe making it onto the health blog too!!! YAY!!!

  10. Maria posted July 19, 2010 at 10:13 am

    All of your food is gourmet:) Love the asparagus!

  11. patsy posted July 19, 2010 at 10:51 am

    What a gorgeous meal! I don’t do gourmet at home all that often, but sometimes when I use my “special” ingredients it feels like I’ve kicked things up a bit to the gourmet level.

  12. eatingRD posted July 19, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    yes, please! This looks wonderful, I love salmon but don’t get it all that often since it’s pretty pricey. Usually I have to opt for canned. I love using herbs de provence. May I ask if you used natural light for this or your kit? Thanks! I’m still holding out for the lowell pro kit :)

  13. Kristen posted July 19, 2010 at 5:54 pm

    Look at you – I’d say that you definitley are being a little gourmet! It looks delicious :)

  14. Jane posted July 19, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    That looks SO GOOD! I love salmon! :)

  15. Amy posted July 19, 2010 at 8:35 pm

    Yummy Aggie! I’m not a salmon fan but my husband would love this. The salad dressing has my name all over it though!

  16. marla posted July 20, 2010 at 10:46 am

    How did you know that salmon is my all time favorite food? Your recipe looks amazing. If I could enjoy wild sockeye salmon, everyday throughout the year I would without getting bored. With my kids I practice the same. I offer them food, sometimes need to plead for them to take a few bites & then move on. Asparagus salad looks great too :) xo

  17. Cookin' Canuck posted July 20, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    The color of that sockeye is gorgeous – makes me miss Vancouver and my favorite fish monger there. Really nice preparation, too.

  18. Diana @ frontyardfoodie posted July 20, 2010 at 6:36 pm

    Mmm! Definitely gourmet! What beautiful color that salmon has! I’m always impressed with seasonal fish.

  19. Sharlene posted July 21, 2010 at 6:57 am

    Beautiful salmon! I definitely think fish, except for tilapia because I make that all the time, is a gourmet dish. I’m so afraid of it! This citrus glaze sounds perfect.

  20. Jenn AKA The Leftover Queen posted July 21, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    It looks lovely Aggie! Definitely gourmet! :)

  21. dawn hutchins posted July 28, 2010 at 9:21 am

    My mother has announced that everything I make is “gourmet” because she just, in her own words, “flops something in a pot” and always tends to make the same thing. This is very flattering; however, I can’t help but think she is biased. She IS my mom after all.

    Now this salmon. Definitely gourmet.

  22. Tammy posted August 29, 2010 at 1:57 am

    YUM!! LOVE salmon… and yours looks delish! :)

    Tammy

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