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{ Sexy Dinner In }: Stuffed salmon! - { Champagne at Shannon's. }

{ Sexy Dinner In }: Stuffed Salmon!

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So I had to post this since it is the perfect dinner to wow that special someone in your life!

Seriously easy enough to throw together for an impromptu date night or Valentine’s Day and look like you’ve spent hours just slaving away in the kitchen.

{ Sexy Stuffed Salmon - easy & super clean! // champagne at shannon's }

TL;DR – Recipe here

I actually made this on Monday, posted it on Instagram & got texts, e-mails, and comments asking about it so I figured it would be perfect to share here since I never got around to e-mailing the recipe out since life just got in the way – with the weekend & holiday, life just got CRAZY OUT OF NOWHERE & STILL IS – so I figured I’d kill 2 birds with one stone and post it here. On that note, so sorry to keep those I promised waiting – anyone else having a crazy week or is it just me?! C’est la vie, right? Anywayyyyss… enough about that.

SO Like all my recipes, this is incredibly easy, super fast, and extremely versatile!

My boyfriend and I were at Whole Foods after yoga {my first session! And I loved it!} trying to figure out what to make for dinner. Before going, I put a menu & list on my Notes app on my macbook but lo & behold, it never transferred to my iPhone so we had to wing our grocery trip. I’m all namaste’ed out from yoga, so I had no idea what to even make.

I was throwing in the usual suspects in my cart: greens, lentils, sweet potatoes, lemons, etc – you know, things I try to eat on a regular basis, easy to prep, and extremely versatile.

My boyfriend asked if I wanted to make fish, and I was just like “meh, I guess,” being all difficult since I lost my shopping list so he rolled his eyes and dragged me over to the fish monger and not only was the selection on point but they had the most incredible looking stuffed salmon (the one I saw at Whole Foods had goat cheese, sundried tomatoes & kale) & I had a lightbulb moment – YES! I DID want to make fish!

So I’m running around Whole Foods like a cray cray fennec fox and I grab some feta, onions, garlic, tonsssssssss of Meyer lemons (in addition to the ones I already had), and fresh herbs & I’m straight stoked to make dinner. We bought a little less than a pound for the two of us, and it was plenty.

As you can imagine, it was a pretty large piece of fish. So first things first, I cut one my size, and one for him. If you’ve seen the guy, he’s like 10 feet tall, so his was significantly larger than mine. 🙂

NOTE: it’s extremely versatile & I’ve mentioned that my partner hates garlic and onions – so for his, I didn’t stuff it, I just rubbed the outside with lemon and herbs, and then topped it with lemon slices and parsley sprigs.

Now, mine on the other hand…

First, I made the stuffing. I diced half an onion & garlic (1 clove) – did it by hand, because I wanted a rough chop & put it in a bowl. Then I chopped up some greens – I used Super Spinach by Organic Girl {favourite brand} which was a mix of spinach, bok choy, & baby kale. I cut the greens up into small pieces and added to the same bowl. Then, I added some fresh herbs – I kept things mild with parsley & oregano, but you can easily use dill, tarragon, or even mint. Again, do whatever rocks your world. Then I added some feta cheese, Meyer Lemon infused olive oil, & of course some salt + pepper, and mixed it in a bowl. I eyeballed everything, but you only want to use about 1 tbsp of oil per person.

{ Sexy Stuffed Salmon - easy & super clean! // champagne at shannon's }

First, I dried the salmon {simple pat down with paper towels} & salt and peppered it generously.

Next, I took the salmon and cut a slit, parallel to the length of the salmon, in the center, about 3/4 inch deep and 3 inches long. Then, I took the stuffing mixture and filled the pocket. I used about half of what I prepared – more on that in a bit. Then, I squeezed a meyer lemon on it, twisted it and placed it on top, and  pan seared both mine and his in a large skillet together.

Now, there are a few tricks you want to do here to keep things from being dry, stringy, or the skin from getting soggy.. And guess where I got my go-to way of cooking it? If you’ve been following me, then you already know I am obsessed with The Food Lab. This & Cook’s Illustratedis where I get ALL my kitchen basics. And I highly recommend either the book, the online membership or BOTH. Every time I cook, I get better through their guidance. This time, J. Kenji López-Alt led the way.

Seriously though, I cannot emphasize it enough,…if you want to continue to get better in the kitchen – I highly recommend you purchase his book. It will change your life in the kitch! Until then, read his article HERE & get ready for some bomb salmon.

Our agenda is simple and blatantly obvious: we do not want to overcook the salmon.

As you are cooking, you want your salmon to be in the medium rare range. As soon as it starts to creep up to 140 degrees, that’s when you get flaky, dry fish, & the albumen will start to leak (you know, that white fluid you see in fish – a sure fire sign that it is over cooked). Keep in mind, the salmon will continue to cook when it is removed from heat, so it’s always better to err on the lower side.

First of all, go generous with the oil, and make sure the oil is preheated, as well. This will keep the skin from sticking to the pan and breaking. Make sure the salmon is DRY. Before I seasoned the fish, I made sure to pat it dry with paper towels.

After you put the salmon in the pan, hold it down with your spatula to ensure even cooking. It is important to do this for the first minute or so as the fish develops its shape in the pan.

Like I said with the best eggs ever, you will want to cook over a lower heat, so you have full control over the fish & can ensure even cooking! As soon as the fish hits the pan, immediately lower the temperature.

Then, my favourite tip…

Cook the whole fish unilaterally aka on one side.

Yup, you will cook the fish the entire time skin side down.

You can cheat a bit, and flip the fish and cook it on top for a minute, but that can be a mess with the stuffing. Whether you flip it or not, be sure to make sure it is ready. If the salmon does not budge as you put your spatula underneath it, DO NOT FORCE IT!!! If there is even the slightest bit of resistance, let it cook a bit longer, and once it is ready, it will easily release from the pan.

{ Sexy Stuffed Salmon - easy & super clean! // champagne at shannon's }

More info on unilateral cooking here

Then, move the salmon to a paper towel lined plate & let it rest. I do this every single time I cook any meats. I find that resting the meat allows the juices to distribute and tends to a juicier, tender bite. Yum! Plus, I can multi-task and prepare whatever the sides are.

I served this with wilted greens & sprouted lentils. As I wilted the greens, I mixed the second half of the stuffing as a base to sit the salmon on top of.

And voila! The easiest dinner ever, that takes less than 15 minutes to cook that is SUPER impressive, and healthy! Perfect for a sexy Saturday night in. 😉

Oh, and what to drink with it? This is dreamy with a Pinot Noir {we especially like Willamette – this one is one of our favourites} or rosé! If you prefer Chardonnay, make sure it is UNOAKED, or else it will overpower & complicate the fish.. and there already is a lot going on with the fish! I like Mer Soliel Silver { no relation },  or Independent Producers if you are looking for a good value. Or, you can follow my rule of thumb and enjoy it with some champagne – I strongly believe champagne / sparkling wine goes with anything & everything. When in doubt on wtf to drink with what, pop that bottle, and trust me.

Sexy Stuffed Salmon

{ Sexy Stuffed Salmon - easy & super clean! // champagne at shannon's }

Ingredients :

– Salmon
– Greens { I used this, but you can easily use spinach or kale }
– Diced Onion { for two, use one onion // for one, use half an onion }
– Roughly Chopped Garlic { 1 clove per person }
– Feta Cheese { I like Whole Foods’ Peppered Feta }
– Herbs { any green herbs are fine }
– Olive Oil { 1 tbsp per person }
– Lemon { as many as you want! }

Recipe :

  1. In a small bowl, mix the diced onion, garlic, feta, chopped greens & herbs, olive oil, salt & pepper in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Pat salmon dry with a paper towel & season liberally with salt and pepper.
  3. Cut a slit 3/4 inch deep in the center of the salmon. Make sure it is parallel to the ends, and leave an inch on both sides.
  4. Heat oil in a skillet over medium high until oil is nice and hot {as Food Lab says, until the oil is shimmering – like that!}
  5.  Place salmon in the pan – skin side down – reduce the heat to medium-low, and hold down the salmon with your spatula for at least a minute. Cook the salmon until medium rare (120 degrees Fahrenheit), and the skin shows zero resistance when lifted. ~6-8 minutes
    ›› OPTIONAL: Flip the salmon for the last minute of cooking.
  6. Move salmon to a plate lined with a  paper towel and rest.
  7. Meanwhile, take your skillet and raise the heat to medium, and add a bit of olive oil (no more than a tbsp). Fill the pan with your greens, and add the remainder of the stuffing, tossing with tongs to make sure everything is coated.
    ›› OPTIONAL: If you don’t want to use the stuffing, squeeze some lemon and season with salt and pepper
  8. Once wilted, move to a plate and place the salmon on top of the greens & voila!

Enjoy! Let me know if you make this – go crazy with the stuffing… seriously versatile! Also, I would LOVE to see! Post it on Instagram, tag or mention me @shannonsilver and use the hashtag #champagnefordinner

PS – if you are looking to make it like how I made it for my boyfriend aka super simple, season the salmon to your liking and just follow step 4-7 and serve over plain wilted greens

Happy Friday & for all those in the east coast, stay safe & warm – some single malt always helps! xx



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