Bacon and Cabbage Frittata paint

Fish is one of the most abundant wild foods available to this small nation of ours, yet we lag behind most of Europe in terms of seafood consumption.

Oily fish such as Salmon, herring (kippers), sardines, mackerel and trout contain omega-3 essential fatty acids and also vit D, which is normally made by the body when exposed to sunlight. People in northern Europe probably often have low levels of this vitamin. Vid D is needed for healthy bones as it is necessary to absorb calcium. Low levels of vit D can speed up the development of osteoporosis, and as you get older your blood vit D levels tend to decrease.

Omega 3 fats in fish (EPA & DHA) help protect the body from heart disease, Alzheimer’s and some types of cancer. Omega 3 also helps relieve the symptoms of arthritis and many other inflammation-related conditions. It is best obtained in the form of fish oil supplements if not by eating oily fish. Salmon especially wild is expensive to purchase, organic less so. Vary your oily fish – mackerel is an inexpensive way of obtaining these much-needed nutrients. It is recommended to eat oily fish 1-2 times per week. (Not canned tuna – too much mercury and almost no omega-3 oils anyway).

This recipe is so simple to make and can be prepared a day ahead.  Try it now as Asparagus is still in season and at its best. This can make for a simple family meal or equally lovely for dinner party or as part of a buffet. Leftovers work great in your lunch box or turn into a frittata or omelette or toss through lentils or chickpeas or potatoes or green leaves to make a funky salad.

Serves 4  

Ingredients

  • 4 organic salmon fillets (preferably wild or organic)
  • Sea-salt and crushed peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons good quality olive oil

Salsa 

  • 4-8 young asparagus spears, woody ends removed
  • 4 spring onion, green part only
  • ½ clove garlic, crushed to a paste
  • 2 tablespoons capers, roughly chopped
  • 4 small sprigs fennel or dill or chervil, finely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons good quality extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Sea salt and crushed peppercorns to season
  • Gluten Free

  • Dairy Free
  • Paleo

  • Low GI

  • Diabetic Friendly

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Method

  1. Place salmon in a deep dish and season with sea salt, crushed peppercorn and a drizzle of oil making sure to rub the mixture onto the salmon. Cover with cling film and allow to marinate for 15 minutes.
  2. Whilst salmon is marinating prepare salsa: Slice asparagus spears at an angle as thinly as possible leaving the purple tips in tact – place in a large mixing bowl. Cut spring onions similar to asparagus – at an angle and as thinly as possible then add to asparagus. Add garlic, capers, herbs, olive oil, lemon juice and seasoning. Gently mix and set aside for 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  3. Heat a large ovenproof frying pan to hot temperature, lower slightly. Place the salmon fillets meaty side down and fry for 2 minutes, turn over and cook for 1 minute. Transfer to oven @ 160c for 4-8 minutes depending on thickness.
  4. To serve: Place the cooked salmon on serving plates. Lightly spoon the salsa over the salmon and top with the asparagus tips. Serve with new baby potatoes and summer greens.

Maggie's Tips

  • Try and source wild or organic salmon if possible (Wild salmon is very expensive to purchase, I generally only have it on very special occasions – it tastes completely different from farmed organic.)
  • The best time to use asparagus in Ireland is May and June when asparagus is in season – try source local if possible. When in season it is young and fresh so no need to cook for this salsa recipe. If stalks are a little bit older or if you are not sure then blanch spears in salted boiling water for 2 minutes and refresh in chilled water. Dry off in kitchen paper before slicing for salsa.
  • This dish can be served hot or at room temperature. My own preferred temperature for eating fresh salmon is room temperature. I think its flavour and texture is at it’s best.