Quick Salmon Salad

February 28 2011 - 8:34 PM

I desired to whip up a quick salmon salad to provide a hearty dose of lean protein for a post-gym meal.  A blurb in Men's Health magazine's online newsletter inspired my creation and I gathered the elements to make this dish. 

From Trader Joe's I purchased a half pound of raw de-skinned Coho salmon, nice and pink.  I cooked it in a wok because it was the most convenient frying dish for me at the time and used some standard Pam for the cooking oil.  After letting the water in the salmon evaporate a bit, I began breaking it apart in the wok using the spatula until it consisted of a pile of strands and chunks, ideal for salad mixing.


  

From there, I drizzled on some lemon juice I purchased at Whole Foods that has gone a long way, as few items I purchase there ever seem to do.  Next I threw in some brown lentils to add a fiber foundation to the salad, and also added some shredded carrots, knowing these would be a great neutral flavor for the mustard but also add a distinctive crunch to the rest of the mush.  The recipe calls for capers, probably for this effect.  I may give that a go next time.  I sprinkled the concoction with garlic powder toward the end of the short cooking time. 

With the heat off, I added a few scoops of mustard, actually I squirted it, and stirred it in with the warm chunks of salmon.  Per the recipe, I used a Dijon mustard that I picked up at Paulina Meat Market, specifically, the Maille brand Dijon Originale, a hearty, biting mustard with a supple, creamy foundation, ideal for salad making.   This mustard is highly recommended for any time you would like a Dijon; it is dynamite with snacks such as prosciutto or deli meats.   The resulting salad ended up with a sharp mustard bite and offered a pleasant creaminess without the use of mayonnaise, a product I detest. 

I chose to serve it over spinach leaves  but it could be scooped on a bagel, toast, Triscuits or other crackers, an English muffin, or even a full blown sandwich, and is edible hot or chilled.  This is a pleasant, comfort dish that has a strong lean protein backing but also offers some fiber and is very versatile in its serving format.  Next time I plan to add olive oil to the mix, per the original recipe, to make it a tad richer and compensate for the dryness of the post-cooked salmon. 

–Mark Sheppard

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