Posts tagged ‘seafood’

Mediterranean Salad with Grilled Salmon and Dijon-Dill Vinaigrette

There’s a little Mediterranean restaurant in Helena that Chris and I like to frequent called The Mediterranean Grill. The menu ranges from Italian cuisine to Turkish, Moroccan and Spanish offerings. Though I typically do not order salads at a restaurant, their Insalata D’Estate particularly stood out to me one evening so I took a chance and ordered it.

I was intrigued and captivated by the flavors and colors in this salad — juicy oranges, crisp bell peppers, crunchy cucumbers, fresh tomato AND sun-dried tomatoes all topped with a perfectly cooked piece of salmon and a garlic-y dijon-dill vinaigrette. It was filling while still relatively light and when I left that night, I was determined to recreate my version at home.

I am proud to announce this salad is delicious and refreshing! This dressing is a tad bit different than the original from what I can remember but it’s still yummmmmmy!

Mediterranean Salad with Grilled Salmon and Dijon-Dill Viniagrette


For fish
2 (6 oz) salmon fillets
salt and pepper
olive oil

For salad
6-8 cups fresh baby greens
1 small orange, peeled and sectioned
1/2 cucumber, peeled and diced
1 small Roma tomato, diced
1/4 cup green or red bell pepper, diced
a few thick slices of red onion (I mimicked how the restaurant prepared it but next time I would dice the pieces smaller)
2-3 sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For viniagrette:
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
juice from half of a lemon (about 1 Tbsp, or you could use more wine vinegar)
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 to 2 Tbsp freshly chopped dill (you could probably used dried, about 1 tsp)
1/4 tsp honey (can omit if you want a more tangy dressing)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
sprig of fresh dill for  garnish, optional
1. Brush salmon filets with olive oil and season salt and pepper and set aside for 15 minutes (it’s best to cook salmon when at room temperature).
2. Prepare vinaigrette, add all ingredients except for fresh dill into a blender cup and blend for 30 seconds or until emulsified. Add in dill and stir until well combined. Set aside and let flavors meld.
2. Brush a grill pan with olive oil and heat over medium-high. Place salmon in pan skin side down and let cook for 4 minutes. Using a spatula, carefully turn filets over and let cook another 3-4 minutes until cooked through (fish should feel firm and not mushy when done cooking, you can cut in the middle to see if it’s cooked through and no longer deep pink). Let rest for a few minutes while you assemble the salad.
2. Assemble salad by placing greens in the bowl, top with chopped vegetables and fan the orange sections. Top with cook salmon and sprinkle with a small pinch of salt (optional) and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with prepared viniagrette and enjoy!
Recipe Notes: Salad is also delicious cold if you prefer a chilled salad and fish. I’ve eaten it both ways!
I had leftover dressing but saved it and drizzle over cooked shrimp and feta cheese :)
Serves 2

March 1, 2012 at 6:27 am 8 comments

Pan-Seared Cilantro-Soy Tuna

I came across a rockin’ deal the other day for ahi tuna and I jumped on it. I was in the mood for an Asian flare (I know, so typical for tuna…but still so delicious) and I whipped up an easy marinade.

We are fans of cilantro in this house…I know it’s a love it-or hate-it herb but it pairs well with this fish. If you can’t stand the thought of cilantro, finely chopped 2 green onions for a different flavor variation. I bet this marinade would also be delicious with steak, chicken or tofu as well :)

To complete our meal, I roasted winter root vegetables and sweet potatoes for an easy side dish. No real recipe to share since I eyeballed everything — simply cube your favorite vegetables and potatoes — such as parsnips, carrots, turnips, yams, onions– toss them in with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic and cilantro (herb is optional). Spread onto a large baking sheet and roast them at 450 for about 45 minutes, stirring once while cooking. (FYI – I also tossed the potato-vegetable mixture with 1/3 cup of sauteed red bell pepper and zucchini I had in the fridge from the night before).

Dinner is served!

Pan-Seared Cilantro-Soy Tuna (adapted from Tyler Florence)


3 Tbsp reduced sodium gluten free soy sauce or Braggs liquid aminos
1 tsp freshly minced ginger or 1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
juice from 1/2 fresh lime (lemon could also work for a different flavor)
handful of cilantro leaves (about 1/4 cup), chopped
1 Tbsp + 1 tsp grapeseed oil (or other neutral oil), divided
dash of crushed red pepper flakes
2 ahi tuna steaks (about 5-6 oz)


1. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients except for tuna. Stir to combine.
2. In a baking dish (I used a loaf pan), add tuna steaks and pour marinade over the fish. Flip over so both sides are coated. Let sit for 8-10 minutes (don’t let sit for too long or the acid will start cooking the fish)
3. Heat the remaining one teaspoon of oil over medium-high heat. Lay tuna in pan and sear for 1 minute to 90 secs on each side (depending on how pink you want it inside). Serve while warm and enjoy!

Serves 2 (can be doubled or tripled)

February 7, 2012 at 6:30 am Leave a comment

Ahi and Kelp Noodle Stir-Fry

I enjoy discovering new foods, and of course the tasting part is always fun! As my palate changes, I’ve become more adventurous (to a limit, I am still weird about meats and raw fish). When I ran across these Sea Tangle kelp noodles in the refrigerated section of the grocery store, they looked interesting and I wanted give them a shot. Not only are gluten free, these flour-free noodles are made from kelp and are rich source of trace minerals including iodine. Check out this link to help describe why iodine is good for your body!

When I opened the package, the noodles had a very intriguing texture, not like real noodles at all. There isn’t a strong taste necessarily so this ingredient could adapt in recipes. I tried these noodles in several ways with opposing verdicts:

  • Raw right out of the bag – for me, I’m not a fan but I understand this is an acquired taste
  • Marinated in a peanut dressing noodle salad – eh, this was ok but looked prettier than it tasted. Definitely needs some work and therefore the recipe isn’t worth sharing. If anyone has a great recipe for a “salad”, feel free to pass along!
  • Soaked and sauteed in a quick stir fry – now this I thoroughly enjoyed! Paired with cubes of ahi tuna steak, veggies and asian flavors, I really enjoyed! I just wish I hadn’t wasted half of the bag on the noodle salad so I could have made a larger batch :)

This dish comes together quickly for an easy lunch or weeknight meal. I used cubed ahi tuna, bell peppers, mushrooms and onions alongside the noodles but any chopped vegetable could be subbed if any of those ingredients aren’t your favorite — squash, zucchini, thinly sliced carrot, water chestnuts and chopped broccoli just to name a few!

Cubed beef,chicken or tofu or even shrimp could stand in for the tuna if preferred as well, just adjust the cooking times — example: season protein with gluten free soy sauce, salt and pepper and cook prior to veggies in Step 2 below, remove from pan and keep warm while completing the remaining instructions. Toss the cooked protein in at step 4 with the soy sauce, cilantro and pepper.

I love meals that are this flexible!

Ahi and Kelp Noodle Stir-Fry


1 Tbsp refined coconut oil (no coconut taste), butter or ghee, or grapeseed oil
6 to 7 ounces ahi tuna, cubed
1/2 sweet bell pepper (red, orange or yellow)
1/3 cup red or white onion, thinly sliced
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated or minced
1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
4 to 6 mushrooms, sliced
1/2 package of kelp noodles, soaked in hot water for 5 minutes*
2 tsp + more to taste gluten free soy sauce, tamari or Bragg’s liquid aminos
drizzle of toasted sesame oil (this is very strong, use sparingly)
salt and pepper to taste
dash of crushed red pepper, optional
2 Tbsp fresh cilantro and/or chopped scallions


1. Season cubed tuna with salt and pepper and 2 tsp of soy sauce, set aside.
2. In a large skillet or wok, add oil/butter to skillet until melted over medium-high heat. Add bell pepper, onions and mushrooms and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, ginger and kelp noodles and cook for one to two minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are translucent.
3.  Add tuna to pan and cook for 1-3 minutes or until desired doneness is reached (check middle of the cubes for doneness, I like it medium rare with a little pink in the center).
4. Season with additional soy sauce to taste along with sesame oil, crushed red pepper and fresh cilantro, toss and serve. Enjoy!

serves 2

*If you do not have kelp noodles on hand, feel free to substitute cooked gluten free rice noodles or cellophane noodles to your stir fry and add in step 3 with the tuna instead of the garlic and ginger. The flavor and texture will be slightly different but still delicious!

January 14, 2012 at 9:00 am Leave a comment

Sauteed Shrimp with Chorizo and Collard Greens

Oh, how I love sauteed collard greens –  I like to serve them tender but green (not slow cooked where they turn a green-brown) where they still have a bite to them after cooking. I try not to cook all “good stuff” out of this nutritional powerhouse – collards are rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, vital B-complex vitamins and minerals as well as iron and calcium. You think collards could give spinach a run for it’s money?

I’ve made a sweet and salty vegetarian dish of collards with raisins and sunflower seeds but today’s version uses shrimp and sausage for a protein n’ greens meal…plus it is quick, easy and not the mention, quite delicious. This is a 30-minute meal from start to finish – great for a weeknight or when you are in a dinner slump.

I’ve adapted this dish from Collards with Turkey Sausage and Shrimp from the March 2010 edition of Clean Eating Magazine – it’s filling and hearty while healthy at the same time! I subbed fresh bulk turkey chorizo for regular sausage for extra spice and flavor but any sausage would do.

Collards with Sauteed Shrimp and Chorizo


1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp chili powder (no salt added)
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp ground pepper
Two dashes of cayenne pepper, optional
1 Tbsp refined coconut oil, butter, ghee or olive oil
2/3 to 3/4 pound of medium or large raw shrimp, tail-off and peeled/deveined
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 pound fresh chorizo sausage (I used turkey) or other sausage but would change the flavor
1 bunch of collard greens, stems removed and leaves chopped
salt and pepper to taste
lemon slices


1. In a small bowl, mix together paprika, chili powder, salt, black pepper and cayenne. In a medium bowl, toss shrimp with 1 tsp spice mixture until coated.
2. Heat 2 tsp oil or butter in a large sauté pan or wok on medium-high. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes, until softened. Add minced garlic and shrimp and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 more minutes, until just turning pink. Transfer onion-shrimp mixture to a bowl and return pan to heat.
3. Heat remaining 1 tsp oil or butter in pan. Add sausage and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until browned (3-4 minutes). Stir remaining spice mixture and chopped collard greens into pan. Cover and cook for 2 minutes. Remove lid, stir and cook for 2 more minutes. Add onion-shrimp mixture back to pan, stir and cook for 1 more minute, until heated through. Season with salt and pepper, if needed and serve immediately with squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Enjoy!

September 27, 2011 at 1:55 pm 5 comments

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