Some of you may remember a post I did on the CSIRO diet and cook books a little while back. Now that spring is here I’ve remembered my number one dish from this book and one that I’ve returned to many times. This was the last thing I made using my oven before we started camp cooking while waiting for the new kitchen to be installed (seems like a distant memory now but was actually only a few weeks ago).
The main components of the dish are pretty basic (although a particularly nice combination) – roasted pumpkin pieces, steamed asparagus and pan fried fillets of salmon. Not really what you’d call a recipe. However it’s the relish that is a little spoon-full of intense, delicious flavours that makes this dish hum in your mouth. Anchovies and capers minced up with the freshness of lemon and parsley – it really is a remarkable marriage that produces an incredible flavour.
The recipe makes enough to have this three times (for two people) so I freeze the remaining amount in two little take-away dipping sauce containers to whip out for another day so turning the dish into an easy weeknight meal. I’m sure the relish would go well with all types of fish, chicken or a nice steak and would be pretty good just with roast vegetables.
The last time I made this I was inspired by the two bunches of baby asparagus I hadn’t been able to resist buying at the Central Market – can you see how tiny and just-formed they are? You get about 20 to a bunch instead of the standard 8-10.
Chargrilled Salmon with parsley relish, asparagus and pumpkin
CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet, Cook Book 1
600g butternut pumpkin, (peeled or not to your liking) and cut into (thinnish) wedges
1 Tbl olive oil
4 x 200g salmon fillets (skin on or off)
16 spears of asparagus
4 Tbl of Parsley Relish
Preheat oven to 180C
Place pumpkin in a roasting tin in a single layer, toss with a little oil and season. Bake for 20 minutes (I roast mine for longer as I like to get some chargrilled edges) or until soft and golden.
Meanwhile, heat a non-stick grill plate or barbecue grill to high. Lightly brush salmon fillets with remaining oil. Place salmon on grill flesh-side down first and cook for 4 minutes each side. Remove from heat and set aside, covered.
Bring a saucepan of lightly salted water to a boil. Add asparagus and blanch for 2 minutes, then drain. Arrange salmon on pumpkin wedges, then top with parsley relish and add asparagus spears. Serve with lime wedges.
Makes about 1 & 1/2 cups
1 bunch of flat leaf parsley
6 anchovy fillets
2 Tbl salted baby capers
grated zest of two lemons
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
Place all ingredients except oil and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Lightly process, then, with the motor still running, add enough oil to form a thick paste. Season to taste with pepper.