Tag Archives: salmon

FFWD: The Never-Doubt-Dorie Moment

Happy French Friday! This is the second of four “celebratory” posts to ease ourselves to the French Fridays with Dorie finish line. This week we are to choose a recipe that “taught you a technique or gave you an idea or provided a lesson of some kind”.

One of my favorite aspects of participating in French Fridays with Dorie was that it pushed me to make recipes I may have otherwise skipped over. Perhaps they sounded too difficult to make, or just didn’t appeal to me. Sometimes I was right to be hesitant about a recipe, but other times I was pleasantly surprised. Either way, I learned a new technique or tried a new ingredient or combination of ingredients.

Dilled Gravlax on Bagels

One such recipe was Dilled Gravlax with Mustard Sauce. I had seen gravlax recipes in other cook books I own. Maybe I didn’t know what to expect as the end result, but whenever I would read through one of these recipes, my eyes would glaze over and I would think “too difficult”, or “not worth it”. So I passed them by.

Then came the week we were to make Dilled Gravlax for French Fridays. By then, I knew I was going to attempt to go the distance and make every recipe from the book. So I made the gravlax. And guess what? It was easy and it was delicious! Who knew?

There are a few other recipes I would like to call out that I probably would not have made if not for FFWD, but that pleasantly surprised me:

Olive Oil Ice Cream – A flavor I wouldn’t expect in ice cream, but that was delicious (especially with chocolate sauce).

Riviera Fish Soup – Pureed fish soup? Yes, when it has the wonderful flavors this soup has.

Cold Melon-Berry Soup – I could not get my head around this one, but I found it refreshing and delicious.

Curious about other Never-Doubt-Dorie Moments? Check out what everyone else thought here.

Have a great weekend everyone!



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FFWD: Seafood Pot-au-feu + Cheesecake Tart

Happy French Friday!  It’s hard to believe how close we are to finishing Around My French Table. Just one more new recipe and four retrospective posts left to go!

This week I will be talking about two week’s worth of recipes: Seafood Pot-au-feu and Cheesecake Tart.

Seafood Pot-au-feu

Seafood Pot-au-feu

Seafood Pot-au-feu is the perfect dish for Spring! Light and healthy, and pretty too. This recipe is a lighted-up version of the classic French dish.

This light stew consists of a bright combination of vegetables and seafood.  The veggies include small potatoes, spring onions (which I actually found!), carrots, leeks, and sugar snap peas.  I left out the mushrooms because certain family members don’t care for them, and while I like mushrooms, they didn’t sound good to me in this particular recipe. For seafood, Dorie recommends mussels, salmon, and sea scallops. Due to family tastes, I used only salmon, and included three scallops just for me. Luckily, we all like salmon! I served the optional pesto as a garnish.

Reactions to the recipe were mixed.  I really liked it, but wished I had cooked the carrots and potatoes a bit longer. My husband enjoyed the salmon and veggies, but overall felt it wasn’t very cohesive (I think he specifically said it lacked “synergy”). We both agreed the pesto was a nice addition. My daughter ate her salmon as long as she had ketchup to dip it in.

Cheesecake Tart

Cheesecake Tart

Our final dessert, Cheesecake Tart, was kind of a dud for me. It’s basically a tart shell filled with a cheesecake-like filling and dried cranberries.

There was nothing particularly wrong with this recipe (except I felt the filling was a little rubbery), it’s just that I like some of the other desserts in the book so much better. The best thing this recipe has going for it, is that it gave me a chance to enjoy that wonderful Sweet Tart Dough recipe again. I may or may not have scraped away some of the filling to enjoy the shell unadulterated.

This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie, an online cooking group that has nearly finished cooking our way through Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table.


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FFWD: Salmon Tartare


I’m a day late, but here is my French Fridays with Dorie recipe for the week.  I was visiting my parents in Seattle last week, so they were the lucky recipients of this delicious dish.  It was fun to take my photos with new props and a different location!

Salmon Tartare is a lovely dish made from raw salmon seasoned with lime, scallions, chives, mint, salt, pepper, and a splash of Tabasco. It is served on a bed of perfectly ripe avocado with similar seasonings, and topped with halved grape tomatoes. To add to the beautiful colors and presentation, Dorie has us layer the ingredients in a ring or ramekin (I used ramekins) for a structured look.

Salmon Tartare

This was a huge hit!  My Dad said it was “Goooooood”! We enjoyed it with white wine on a beautiful, sunny afternoon. I loved the combination of flavors and textures.  Having fresh ingredients is a must.

A note on portion sizes:  Dorie mentions that the portions are generous, so I cut the recipe in half.  Even then, the portions for three of us were generous for a starter.

I hope you are all having a nice weekend!


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Salmon Rillettes

Salmon Rillettes

It’s Friday, and once again I’m going against the grain and posting a make-up recipe instead of the current week’s French Fridays with Dorie pick.

This week’s recipe involves zucchini blossoms.  I am hoping (finger’s crossed!) that my garden will start producing zucchini blossoms very soon.  It’s been a tough year for my vegetable garden.  I am having a big problem with pests eating my sprouts and seedlings.  Of the 24 or so green bean seeds I planted, only two sprouts look like they might survive.  The rest were eaten, sometimes before they even broke through the soil.  My zucchini plants are struggling as well.  It looks like two or three of them have a good chance of surviving.  If you see a zucchini blossom post from me in a few weeks, you will know they survived!

Salmon Rillettes

Instead of skipping this week altogether, I did a make-up from last month instead.  Salmon Rillettes is a delicious spread made from a combination of fresh and smoked salmon.  The fresh salmon is gently poached in white wine, then mashed with the smoked salmon, lemon zest, chopped shallot, lemon juice, and a bit of butter.  After chilling, it’s ready to serve.

Salmon Rillettes

I served Salmon Rillettes for dinner with toasted baguette slices and a nice salad.  I loved it!  Though I served it for dinner, it would be excellent as an appetizer for a dinner party. I had leftovers for lunch on a bagel with cream cheese, and it was quite tasty!

We have made 3 rillettes now (sardine, salmon, and tuna), and this is my favorite.

I found the recipe for Salmon Rillettes on pbs.org.  You can also find in in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table.


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Onion “Carbonara” + Dilled Gravlax

Happy Friday!  I didn’t get a chance to make this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe, so I thought I would take this opportunity to do a “catch up” post.  There are two recipes from December that I made on time, but didn’t quite find the time to write about.  So, here we are!

Recipe-Swap Onion “Carbonara”

Onion "Carbonara"

Recipe-Swap Onion “Carbonara” is a play on the classic pasta dish, Carbonara.  It replaces the pasta with onions and can be served as a side dish or starter.  In her Bonne Idée for this recipe, Dorie suggests that it is a wonderful topping for pasta, so that’s how I served it.

In this recipe, steamed thinly sliced onions are tossed with chopped bacon, cream, an egg yolk, butter, and grated Parmesan to make a creamy dish.

We loved the flavors of this, but felt that the fettuccine I used was too heavy for the onion sauce; it detracted from the flavors.  The next day I gently reheated the leftovers and served it on a lighter pasta and it worked much better.

Dilled Gravlax with Mustard Sauce

Dilled Gravlax with Mustard Sauce

This one is a showstopper!  Save it for a special meal or when you want to impress!  Or, since it is so easy to make, have it whenever you feel like treating yourself to something special.

I have never made Gravlax before.  I have looked a recipes for it, but it always seemed so intimidating.  I don’t know why I was intimidated – this is so easy to make!  All you need is time and a quality piece of salmon.

To make gravlax, a fresh salmon fillet is rubbed with a mixture of white and black peppercorns, coriander seeds, sea salt, and sugar.  It is topped with plenty of fresh dill and cured for 48 – 72 hours.  Slice thinly and serve with a honey-mustard dill sauce.

Gravlax with Mustard Sauce

I absolutely loved this!  I never thought homemade gravlax could be so much better than store-bought.  I loved how the dill permeated the salmon.  It was so flavorful.  I served this as part of my Christmas appetizer spread and it was perfect for such a special occasion.

The next morning I put some of the salmon on a toasted bagel with cream cheese – scrumptious!

Lox and Cream Cheese on a Bagel

Do yourself a favor, next time you want to impress (even if you are only trying to impress yourself), make Dilled Gravlax with Mustard Sauce!

These recipes can be found in Dorie Greenspan’s book, Around My French Table, a must-have for any cook’s library.


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Salmon with Basil Tapenade + Blueberry-Mascarpone Roulade

I’m back to my every-other-week schedule this week!  I have two French Fridays with Dorie recipes to share with you:  Salmon with Basil Tapenade and Blueberry-Mascarpone Roulade (although mine is not a roulade).

First we’ll talk about the Salmon with Basil Tapenade.  This was a very simple, but tasty, dish.  First off, a mixture is made with black olive tapenade (I purchased mine at Trader Joe’s), minced basil, lemon zest and juice, and freshly ground pepper.  This mixture is stuffed into slits in the salmon, which is roasted.  Finally, a sauce is made from a bit of the tapenade mixture, olive oil, more basil, and more lemon zest and juice.  The sauce is spooned over the salmon on the plate.

Salmon with Basil Tapenade

This was delicious!  The flavors all went so nicely together and the whole family enjoyed it.  I served the salmon with one of my favorite green bean dishes ever:  Warm Green Bean Salad with Pine Nuts and Basil.  A great meal!

Next is a wonderful dessert called Blueberry-Mascarpone Roulade.  Except instead of doing a roulade, I took inspiration from the two Bonne Idées included with this recipe.  Apparently, the batter for this cake is the same as the batter for ladyfingers, so I decided to try my hand at making ladyfingers.  Fun!


To asseble the dessert, I made what I called “Blueberry Tiramisu Parfaits”.  I layered ladyfingers and the blueberry-mascarpone filling in glass dishes for a very pretty dessert.  I brushed a little creme de cassis on the ladyfingers, but I had too light a hand and couldn’t taste it.  I wish I had used more.

Blueberry Tiramisu Parfaits

I loved this dessert!  I could have eaten spoonfuls of the vanilla-flavored mascarpone cream filling – it was fabulous!  The blueberries were a delicious counterpoint to the sweet cream, and the ladyfingers rounded out the flavors and textures perfectly.

All in all, a delicious two weeks of French Fridays with Dorie eating!



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Roasted Salmon and Lentils

Are you looking for a delicious, satisfying, and healthy meal?  Look no further than “Roasted Salmon and Lentils”!  It’s this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe.

This recipe is a lesson in cooking lentils du Puy, or French green lentils.  They are simmered to perfection with onion, a clove, carrot, celery, bay leaf, and chicken broth.  A few of the lentils are removed and pureed, then the veggies are chopped and mixed back in.  The result is very flavorful!

The salmon is simply roasted in the oven with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.

I loved this meal, and so did my daughter.  She has always liked salmon, but she really liked the lentils too.  She even had seconds!  My husband liked the salmon and “tolerated” the lentils.

You can find the recipe for “Roasted Salmon and Lentils” in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table.  If you don’t have this wonderful book you really should get it!


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Salmon and Tomatoes en Papillote

I knew I was going to like this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe before I even started making it.  How can you go wrong with salmon cooked en papillote?

The salmon “packets” are easy to assemble.  Place the salmon on top of some basil leaves.  Add a drizzle of olive oil and some salt and white pepper.  Top with lemon zest, thinly sliced red onions, a few grape tomatoes, lemon slices, and finally a sprig of thyme.  Seal the packets and bake!

It even looks good before it is cooked!

When the salmon comes out of the packets it is moist and perfectly cooked.  I found some fresh, wild sockeye at the market.  It really makes a difference to use fresh and wild salmon.  I can tell the difference, both in flavor and texture.

Fresh from the oven

I served my salmon with Spinach with Orzo and Feta.  It was the perfect accompaniment; the flavors went really well together.  The recipe comes from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food.  It can be found on her web site (Spinach with Orzo and Feta), so I will not include the recipe here.

This meal was a hit with my whole family!



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