Saturday, September 6, 2014

Smoked Paprika Seared Salmon & Chickpea Hash

This is a great dish anytime of the year.  The flavors really pop in your mouth.  The red pepper and sun dried tomatoes compliment the capers and red onion, giving it a sweet and salty flavor.  Smoked paprika is one of my favorite seasonings.  The sweet, smoky flavor goes well with almost anything.  The last week was so hectic with school being back in session.  I apologize for not posting sooner.  Even though the days get really busy, I still like to make dinner for Jake and the kids and this dinner is easy, elegant and super tasty.  Mason is in first grade now, at a new school, and it's so difficult to get information out of him as to how his day went.  When we all sit down together for dinner, this meal maximizes the amount of information I can extract ;)  Dinner time doesn't always go smoothly but I've got to give it a try.  Having a tasty and healthy dish really helps!  I hope everyone's Fall is off to a good start!  

It's a great dish to eat al fresco with a glass of white wine.

Chickpea hash

Seared salmon going into the oven to finishing cooking…

La Recette:

4 - 6 oz. salmon filets
2 teaspoons smoked paprika (Trader Joe's has a great one)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 - 15 oz. cans chickpeas
1 roasted red pepper *, thinly sliced
1 jalepeño, finely chopped, seeds, stem and ribs removed 
6-8 sun dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
4 cups fresh spinach 
1/2 large red onion - finely chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine (whatever you are drinking that night works)
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar (or another white wine vinegar if you can't find champagne)
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and dried
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Zest and juice of one lemon
Parsley for garnish

2 - sauté pans
Baking sheet
Aluminum foil
Measuring cups and spoons
Microplane zester or rasp
Chef's knife
Mixing spoon

-Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
-Remove the salmon from the refrigerator and let it sit out for about twenty minutes before cooking it.  Sprinkle each filet with a 1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika, and kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
-While you are waiting for the salmon to come to room temperature, start on the chickpea hash.
-Pour 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil into a sauté pan on medium high heat.  Add the garlic and cook until fragrant.  1-2 minutes.  Keep an eye on it because garlic can burn quickly and burnt garlic tastes very bitter.
-Next add the onion and sauté for 4-5 minutes, add the jalepeño and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
-Pour in the 1/2 cup white wine and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.
-Add the spinach and chickpeas and turn the heat down to medium.  Sauté for 5-6 minutes.
-Next add the roasted red pepper, sun dried tomatoes, and capers.  Mix well.  
-Finally, add the champagne vinegar, lemon zest and juice.  Mix well and continue to cook on low heat.
-In the other sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil until very hot.  Place the salmon in the pan two filets at a time, skin side up.  Cook for about 3 minutes or until you see the salmon is cooked about 2/3 of the way up (see above picture).
-Place the salmon on a baking sheet, skin side down, and bake in the oven for about 6 minutes.
-Remove from the oven and let it sit for about 5 minutes.  When you take the salmon off of the baking dish, use a spatula and the skin should come right off.  I like baking the fish with the skin because it adds a lot of flavor.  
-Turn the heat off on the chickpea hash and spoon into a bowl.  Place the salmon on top, garnish with a parsley leaf and serve immediately. 

-Serves 4 adults

*You can buy roasted red peppers but I like to do it myself, in the oven, grill or even the toaster oven.  If it's on the grill, just make sure the grill is hot and place the peppers right on the hot grill.  Keep rotating until it's lightly blackened and soft.  Then place in them in a bowl and cover for about 10 -15 minutes, so they continue to steam.  The skin should easily peel off.  If it's in the oven/toaster oven, place the peppers on a baking sheet and roast for about 25 minutes at 400 degrees.  Again, place in a bowl after and cover.   They keep in the fridge for about a week and are great in salads and sandwiches.  

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