Salmon with Bright Lemon Vinaigrette

Once summer rolls around my body craves all the things it should really be eating year round.  Give me all the salads and fresh flavors and while we’re at it, let’s eat them outside. There’s definitely something about the sunshine that ushers in more than just fresh blooms.  I would guess you’re the same. Sure, we may be realizing we’ll soon be living in our bathing suits, but let’s not think about that more than we have to.

This salad topped with salmon and sprinkled with sliced radishes, chickpeas, and cucumber is just what I want for dinner and thankfully my kids will eat it too.  We’ve always referred to salmon as “pink fish” in our family so the boys don’t know any different than to like it. Although it’s best warm, salmon can also taste just as good eaten cold the next day.

For this recipe I wanted a really fresh and simple dressing that wouldn’t compete with the salmon and bring out the freshness of the dish.  This vinaigrette can be made in a mason jar, adding everything at once and then shaking it several times. If you aren’t in the habit of making your own salad dressing, now is a perfect time to start.  You’ll find how simple it is and much healthier as well.

This salmon was cooked in my cast iron skillet using a method of preheating the skillet which I highly recommend.  It’ll help get you that char and cooks the skin of your salmon, if yours has it on, super well. Be careful with kids in the kitchen for this part.  A skillet that’s been in a 500 degree oven is not something you want a toddler walking up to!

I’ll share the recipe for a family of four, although this can easily be adjusted to feed however many you’ll be dining with that evening.  Ladies, this would make a great lunch as well with some friends!

First up place your cast iron skillet, large enough for your salmon, in the middle rack of your oven then preheat it to 500 degrees.  Next, make your dressing. It’ll keep for several days in your fridge if you don’t use it in one sitting and would go really nice over some rice if your kids won’t eat salad.

Lemon Vinaigrette
1 garlic clove, minced
½ teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
2 teaspoons maple syrup
1 lemon, juiced
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
½ cup olive oil

For the Salad
2-4 pieces of salmon, skin on is preferred
1 bag of spring mix salad
4 radishes, sliced
2 small cucumbers, sliced
3 tablespoons of rinsed and drained chickpeas

Once your own reaches 500 you’ll take the cast iron out using oven mitts. That’s a key step not to forget!  You can then turn off your oven. Gently oil both sides of the salmon with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Put the skillet on your stovetop at medium high heat and place the fish flesh side down and cook for 3-4 minutes depending on its thickness.  Don’t move it, just let it cook. After that time is up flip it and turn down the heat to medium low. At this point you’re looking for the skin to get nice and crispy and for the salmon to cook.  It’ll take anywhere between 9 to 12 minutes and technically should be 125 degrees for medium rare. I always test my salmon and it’s doneness with a fork. If the pieces easily come apart I know it’s done!  Enjoy and Happy Spring!

old friends

I feel like a bad friend to you guys right now. I can't seem to get it together!  If you follow me on Instagram, you're the crew I'm talking about. We had this whole conversation about fried chicken and cookbooks and recipes.  It's taken me far too long to get back to you about these things, while all the while I find myself still blogging in my head.

Today I find myself apparently a procrastinator, something I never was before kids.  My brain doesn't seem to function past 8 pm and if you text me after that, you'll likely hear back from me at 6.  AM.  I'm learning if I'm going to get things done it's either early in the morning, or mid afternoon when my house is quiet for approximately 60 minutes.  At least that what it feels like.

I'm writing from a new quiet place today and contemplating living here.  Just kidding.  But really, being able to write while I drink a hot coffee is so good for my soul and something I am going to do more of gosh darn it!

I'm done with all the talking and want to start doing it for the process and far more often.  I feel the same way about the cows I snapped pictures of a couple weeks back.  I've been wanting to paint them and am contemplating using my office in the basement, or since that likely won't be the most quiet place this summer, bringing my easel up to the kitchen thanks to the inspiration from Lauren Combs.

Do you feel the itch to be creative?  It's something that's always been in me and a place I feel called to explore more of.  Being vulnerable and putting ourselves out there isn't always easy, but I know it's always worth it, especially when it's that still small voice saying, "this is the way, walk in it."

So, here we go friends.  Today I need to tie up some projects that are due, boy am I thankful for those!, and then get back to you- and maybe that easel.