Sunday, April 29, 2007

Improv

In the theatre that is the kitchen, it's important to remember the value of improvisation.

Tonight, I knew I wanted to cook salmon with dill, so I turned to the trustiest of all kitchen muses, www.epicurious.com. The advanced recipe search feature is unbelievable--you can search for anything, and get hundreds of results, complete with posted advice from those who've made the recipe.

I found a basic dill mustard sauce recipe:
1/2 cup coarse-grained mustard
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup olive oil
4 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup chopped fresh dill, or to taste
Mix all igredients, refridgerate till serving on broiled salmon rubbed with soy sauce prior to broiling.

Pretty basic, right? Well, one cook posted that the sauce "tasted like it needed to be cooked." From her tip, and using only the ingredients I had on hand, this marvelous sauce arose:

1/3 c lowfat milk
1 tb chopped dill
1 tb good-quality dijon
splash of olive oil
1 tsp sugar
(All measurements are estimates--I knew I was only making one serving, so everything is roughly reduced by 4.)
Whisk all ingredients, add pepper to taste. Finely dice 1 shallot--sautee in a bit of olive oil. When shallot just starts to brown, add the sauce mixture. Simmer over low heat while grilling garlic and dill rubbed salmon filets in a grill pan.

This was one of the best salmon dishes I have ever had--sweet, tangy, well balanced, just right for summer! Swapping the cream for milk makes it creamy without being heavy. I paired this with a spinach salad with strawberries, almonds, mozzerella, and balsamic.

Salmon and spinach are both highly acclaimed super foods. Spinach is loaded with antioxidants, folate, and iron. Salmon is an outstanding source for omega-3 fatty acids, which aid in biological processes and help with keeping beautiful skin.

Having a recipe as a jumping off point is a great way to get you moving in a general direction, but improvising is the only way to really explore what you like and what you can do.

1 comment:

Loa said...

Yumble-dee scrumptious. When you gonna cook for me again? You made me hungry. Grrrrr.