We are having Spring Fever over at I Heart Cooking Clubs --cooking up the Giada recipes that represent spring to us. I selected her Salmon in Lemon Brodetto with Pea Purée. The lightness of this recipe--heart healthy salmon in a delicate broth says spring to me, along with the "springy" ingredients contained within like lemon, peas and mint. Plus I seem to have a thing for lemons this week with making Giada's Lemon Chicken Soup on Sunday and Ming Tsai's Lemongrass Shrimp Scampi on Wednesday. Since I had a bunch of fresh mint and some homemade chicken stock in my fridge, plenty of lemons in my fruit bowl, and wild salmon and baby peas in the freezer, this recipe came together quickly and easily--always a bonus.
Giada also thinks it is perfect for the season and says, "This dish is a perfect embodiment of the way I like to eat. The colors just say spring, it's light, and everything tastes really fresh and bright."
You can find the recipe at the Food Network here or in Giada's Kitchen (pages 166-167)
Giada De Laurentiis
(Makes 4 Servings)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, diced
2 lemons, one zested and both juiced
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves
2 cups frozen peas, thawed (about 10 oz)
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 cup olive oil
(4 to 6-oz) pieces salmon
Freshly ground black pepper
To make the Lemon Brodetto, warm the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots and saute until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the lemon juice, zest, and broth. Bring to a simmer, and keep warm, covered, over low heat.
To make the Pea Purée, combine the peas, mint, garlic, salt, and pepper in a food processor and puree. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a steady drizzle. Transfer the pea puree to a small bowl and stir in the Parmesan. Set aside.
To make the Salmon, warm the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over high heat. Season the salmon pieces with salt and pepper. Sear the salmon until a golden crust forms, about 4 to 5 minutes on the first side. Flip the fish and continue cooking until medium-rare, about 2 minutes more depending on the thickness of the fish.
To assemble the dish, add the tablespoon chopped mint to the Lemon Brodetto and divide between 4 shallow dishes. Place a large spoonful of Pea Purée into the center of each bowl. Place a salmon piece atop each mound of Pea Puree. Serve immediately.
Notes/Results: Maybe not the prettiest Giada dish I have made--I might have gotten a little heavy handed with the amount of broth in the bowl, but this was a really tasty and refreshing recipe. I loved the lemony chicken broth (OK, my homemade stock did have a ton of flavor if I do say so myself), and it complemented the fresh taste of the minty pea purée. I did reduce the olive oil by about half in both the purée and to cook the salmon--it wasn't really needed in my mind, so why add the extra calories? I know I don't need them. The salmon was moist and tender and the combination of the three elements in the bowl really worked for me. I enjoyed this lighter, colorful, dish that came together so quickly and easily and I would make it again.
You can check out what Giada dishes are curing Spring Fever for the other IHCC participants by going to the post here and following the links.