Real Food for Real Life

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Salmon, my mother-in-law's way

For Christmas dinner my mother-in-law served both a beef tenderloin roast and a baked salmon. I went with the beef this evening, but Ben had the salmon and told me about how good it was. Having watched her prepare it, I knew it was super easy, making it the best kind of dish. Tuesday was a busy da,y requiring a simple meal, and having a bag of salmon fillets in the freezer, I decided to give her method a try. That morning I put together a cucumber dill sauce and a quick white bean salad, leaving only the salmon to prepare at dinner time (and some rice, thanks to Uncle Ben). I served the fish, rice, and beans on a bed of baby spinach, with the sauce on the side. It was so simple and delicious that it is one to remember for a busy weeknight (and no fish smell in the house as an added bonus!).

Lemon Baked Salmon

salmon fillets, individual portion size
2 lemons
fresh (or dried) minced dill
coarse salt & fresh ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400. Spray a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Rinse and pat dry the salmon fillets and place in the dish. You can use fillets with the skin or not; if they still have the skin the flesh lifts off easily once cooked. Squeeze the juice of one large lemon over the fillets and season with salt, pepper, and dill. Lay a thin slice from the second lemon on each fillet and bake for 20 minutes. If using fillets with skin, use a metal spatula to separate and lift the fish, leaving the skins in the dish.

Cucumber Dill Sauce

1 cucumber
1/3 packed cup fresh dill
3/4 cup light mayonnaise
3/4 cup light sour cream
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
coarse salt & fresh ground black pepper

If the cucumber has a thick waxy skin, peel it, otherwise, leave the peel on. Remove the seeds and cut into a small dice. Mince the dill. Combine all the ingredients and chill until serving time.

Mediterranean White Bean Salad

2 cans (15oz.) canellini beans, rinsed & drained
1/4 cup roasted red pepper, sliced (jarred is fine)
1/3 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved lengthwise
3 tbs. lemon juice
2 tbs. olive oil
1 tbs. coarse grain mustard
coarse salt & fresh ground black pepper

Combine ingredients and chill until needed. Bring to room temperature before serving.


  1. Pat C. on Facebook: Likes this.

  2. Tracey C. on Facebook said: I wish I could learn to like salmon. I have tried and tried. i know it is sooo good for you. The dill sauce and the beans look yummy!!
    January 2 at 2:27pm

  3. Crystal G. on Facebook said: Yum... I love salmon! I always order it when dining at Brazenhead restaurant. It's the best salmon served on orzo w/ spinach. I like your recipe's Mary. Keep it up, I'm checking them out. ;-)
    January 3 at 11:57am


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