Friday, November 19, 2010

Smart Fish

It's official. The point and shoot is cashed, junked, deceased. Which means all of my fun plans for posting a Thanksgiving rundown and Christmas cookies are dashed until I can replace it. Luckily I have a few dishes that I was saving, so I won't be posting recipes with stock photos for a while. Sigh.

As much as I'd love to post a pretty photo of Giada's Butternut Vanilla Risotto for this week's Fall Favorites theme for IHCC, I can't do it. So here's another Giada dish, one that I enjoyed (stop the presses!). One that I enjoyed so much, we ate it twice. I can't even believe it myself. It's one thing for me to love a Giada recipe, but it's a whole other ball of wax for me to love a Giada dish that includes the most vile fish on the planet. We're talking salmon. Shudder. I know everybody and their mother loves salmon, smearing it with maple syrup and lemon and whatever the hell else you'd put on it, but it makes me gag. I've always found it revolting, but maybe that's because people keep pouring friggin' pancake syrup on it.

When I first found out I was pregnant, I started researching all of the fun nutritional information I needed and found that I was happily on the right track already. Then I discovered the harrowing truth. Babies need lots of DHA (an omega-3 fatty acid) for brain development, 600 mg a day according to my OB. That's more than twice the amount found in most prenatal vitamins. One good source of DHA? You guessed it. Salmon. Yes, you can find supplements in lots of health food stores to make up for the difference, but they can be expensive, and I'm already taking two horse pills a day. I thought I'd go out on a limb and try to include a little salmon in my diet (Doctor Marvelous said 6 oz. a week would cut it). This recipe was my first attempt, and it was actually delicious. So good I called my mom to tell her.

I've decided the Baby Bean has chosen to make me like salmon so I'll eat more of it and he will become a Noble Prize winning super genius. Or just a regular kid, that's be pretty awesome, too.

Whole Wheat Linguine with Lemon, Basil, and Salmon
Adapted from Giada's Kitchen

1/2 pound whole-wheat linguine
cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 (4-ounce) pieces salmon1 tsp. dried basil
3 tablespoons capers
1 lemon, zested (OF COURSE!)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta and transfer to a large bowl. Add the garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine.
Meanwhile, warm the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Add the fish to the pan and cook until medium-rare, about 2 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the fish. Remove the salmon from the pan.
Add the basil, capers, lemon zest, and lemon juice to the spaghetti mixture and toss to combine. Set out 4 serving plates or shallow bowls. Place 1/2 cup spinach in each bowl. Top with 1/4 of the pasta. Top each mound of pasta with a piece of salmon. Serve immediately.


Kat said...

SUCKS about the camera :( I reviewed my DSLR :) I know you want it!

And as for babies and salmon - YES! Also, if you take prenatals (are you taking prenatals??) you can choose ones that have the required omegas you need - I take One a Day Prenatal vitamins. They are great and our little Peanut is super healthy or so they say since she's not born yet. Also - are you a member at Cosco or BJ's? I recently went to BJ's Wholesale where I bought a whole bag of individually wrapped frozen (unfortunately farm-raised so you can't have it TOO often) salmon steaks and they are actually delicious! And not ridiculously pricy! It takes no time to defrost and stick them in the oven with your choice of additives to make it tasty (simple lemon pepper rub is great). Totally recommend it.

Couscous & Consciousness said...

I love salmon, and I love to use it in all sorts of different ways - don't think I've ever adding maple syrup to it though - not sure if I like that idea or not. Interesting that you've found a liking for something you previously hated - I'm think it's clearly a positively brilliant baby making you like something he knows he needs :-) I think part of the secret to liking salmon is cooking it slightly rare - over-cooked salmon is disgusting. Anyway, this dish looks and sounds great - I will definitely be trying this.
Sue :-)

Christy said...

i can barely say the name salmon in front of my husband. he lived in alaska for 15 years and the first couple of years he was there he caught and ate so much salmon that he won't eat it anymore! i'm glad you found a recipe you really like :)
thanks for stopping by my place...have a great weekend

Debinhawaii said...

Bummer about the camera. :-( I tagged this one to make and being a salmon lover myself, if you like it being not a fan of salmon, I am sure I will adore it! It looks delicious ;-)

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

I am a big fan of salmon too, great dish! (And I am all for real maple syrup - being Canadian - but never for pancake syrup. ☺)

Kim said...

Joanna- I'm sorry to hear about your camera, but I'm really excited to hear about the baby news! I had no idea - Congratulations:)

This salmon recipe has got my attention while flipping through her recipes many times. I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed it. It does look delicious.

girlichef said...

WAIT! Stop the presses! You're pregnant!!!??? I didn't know! Congratulations...woo hoo :) I'm glad baby likes salmon, cuz it is soooo good...and even better you found a good Giada recipe to help you along. nice. I don't what I'd do if my camera took a sh*t on me. Cry probably ;)

~ Lyndsay The Kitchen Witch said...

I've made this recipe before - love it for a quick weeknight meal as it just tastes so fresh and healthy.

I live on Vancouver Island where the salmon is plentiful and swear my son is more intelligent because of all the fish I ate during my prgnancy ;)

MM said...

Sorry about your camera.

You aren't the only one. I love fish and we eat a lot of it. But salmon is something I've never been able to develop a taste for. Glad you found a recipe you like!

Kevin said...

With the garlic, capers, & lemon ... I bet this is pretty tasty!

I used to hate salmon when I was younger ... but these days it's pretty tasty to me seasoned with lemon/pepper or a balsamic blend. Yum!

Pierce said...

Oh, that DOES suck about your camera! Sorry to hear it.
Baby bean will love his salmon. I don't buy the farm raised sort and really, the wild caught stuff is pretty good!

Cook of the House said...

Glad to see you have joined the ranks of us salmon lovers but I find it quite odd that it was a recipe of Giada's that converted you. lol I like salmon in so many different ways, one of them being grilled with maple syrup. Yum. Congrats on the little Einstein!

Alexis AKA MOM said...

I hate when a camera goes down, it's like a beloved family member.

LOVE the recipe! I'm a new follower

Brenda said...

Salmon is one of my favourite foods but never with maple syrup, lol. I wonder if that makes me un-Canadian :o) I'm glad you've discovered how delicious salmon is. Thanks so much for entering the culinary smackdown and good luck!! (And congrats.....:o)