Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Jamie's Quick Salmon Tikka with Cucumber Yogurt

Jamie Oliver and I have been rockin' the curries lately (Fish with Very Simple Curry, Chicken Korma) so this week for Potluck at I Heart Cooking Clubs I thought we should keep with our winning streak. Wanting something fast and easy, I selected his Quick Salmon Tikka with Cucumber Yogurt.

I made two small changes--based on what I had on hand--using a tandori curry rub instead of a paste, subbing the mint for the cilantro (I could have sworn that I bought cilantro the other day), but otherwise I left this simple, flavorful recipe as written.

You can find the recipe at Jamie Oliver.com or in "Jamie's Food Revolution" on pages 28-29.

Jamie says, "I love this dish. If you’re a fan of chicken tikka masala, give this one a go. You might think it odd to use robust spice pastes on fish, but it’s very common in southern India. When buying your fish, ask the fishmonger to scale it for you. You'll be amazed at how quickly these cook."

Quick Salmon Tikka with Cucumber Yogurt
Adapted from Jamie Oliver
(Serves 2)
Time: 17 minutes

2 naan breads (I used a garlic naan)
1 fresh red chilli
1/2 a cucumber
1 lemon
4 Tbsp natural yogurt
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
a few sprigs of fresh coriander (I used mint)
2 (200g/7oz) salmon fillets, skin on, scaled and bones removed (I used my Costco Wild Salmon fillets which are about 5-6 oz each)
1 heaped Tbsp tandoori or mild curry paste (like Patak's) (I used a Tandori Curry Rub)
olive oil

Preheat your oven to 110°C.
Pop your naan breads into the oven to warm through

Halve, deseed and finely chop your chilli. Peel and halve your cucumber lengthways, then use a spoon to scoop out and discard the seeds. Roughly chop the cucumber and put most of it into a bowl. Halve your lemon and squeeze the juice from one half into the bowl. Add the yogurt, a pinch of salt and pepper and half the chopped chilli. Pick the coriander leaves and put to one side

Slice each salmon fillet across lengthways into three 1.5cm wide slices. Spoon the heaped tablespoon of tandoori paste into a small dish, then use a pastry brush or the back of a spoon to smear the tandoori paste all over each piece. (don’t dip your pastry brush into the jar!)
Heat a large frying pan over a high heat. Once hot, add a lug of olive oil, put the salmon into the pan and cook for about 1½ minutes on each side, until cooked through

Place a warmed naan bread on each plate. Top each one with a good dollop of cucumber yogurt and 3 pieces of salmon. Scatter over a little of the reserved cucumber, chilli and coriander leaves and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice.

Notes/Results: Quick and delicious--what more do you want?! The wild salmon is moist and flavorful and pairs well with the slight kick of the pepper and the cooling yogurt and cucumber. Jamie says it takes 17 minutes to prepare but I warmed the nan on top of the stove and it took under 15 minutes to put this together. (BTW: That is a "fat" garlic naan bread, not pita bread --you just can't see much of the top of it.) Quick and easy and good enough to make often.

You can see what Potluck dishes the other IHCC are making this week by going to the post here and following the links.

And in other news...

No Meat for a Month?!?

No meat, no poultry, no fish, no eggs, no dairy... Yep, I am going vegan for 28 days with The Engine 2 Diet 28 Day Challenge. As I have mentioned before on this blog, I work sometimes with my local Whole Foods Market and they are sponsoring/hosting this challenge for their employees and customers with weekly Monday evening meetings. I am leading a piece on nutrition and label reading next week and it seemed inauthentic to get up and talk to the group about finding and choosing healthy foods appropriate for the diet without actually taking the challenge myself. Besides it is always easier to go into a challenge with support and there are about 30 people going through it. A few years ago about 3/4 of my office went through a pretty intense cleanse and yoga program, and although I learned more about my co-workers' bathroom "business" than I ever wanted to know, ;-) going through it with a group was fun and made it much easier.

You might have noted that a fair amount of vegan and vegetarian recipes appear on this blog already and over the next month you will see a lot more. Since I lean towards eating meat only on occasion, I eat only very limited quantities of dairy, and I make a lot of vegetarian dishes already, the only thing I am struggling with a bit is the ...gulp... no oil part of the diet. I usually reduce the oil in recipes, but going without it completely for a month is difficult--especially when eating out. I stopped by my local co-op today starving after a long meeting and all of the vegan choices on their hot food bar had some kind of oil in them. So I came home and made quick vegan tostada on puffed corn thins.

You will see a few more posts with non-vegan recipes that I made before we started the challenge this week, but the bulk of the next four weeks' recipes and posts will be vegan. The diet, conceived by Rip Esselstyn a world class triathlete turned firefighter, to address the dangerously high cholesterol of one of his fellow firefighters. His entire Engine 2 firehouse took the challenges and they all had dramatic positive changes to their cholesterol, weight, blood pressure, etc. So here's to 28 days of a plant-based diet that is good for my body and the planet, as well as a good kick start to put my focus back to healthier food choices.

Sounds like a worthy challenge to me! ;-)


  1. Ciao ! I love this jamie dish and I'm really curious about you next challenge..good luck !

  2. That is a serious challenge - no oil???

    The tikka looks delicious too.

  3. Ooo I'm SO excited about this challenge! Well, mainly because I love vegan and vegetarian recipes. The no oil thing would get me too...as would no dairy. I have a feeling I'd start dreaming about cheese and yogurt.

    I thought about making this for this week's IHCC but went with a different curry instead. Next week this may have to be on the menu!

  4. I look forward to following your vegan posts. I could never do it.

  5. whoa! but I know you can do it!

  6. Oh, this sounds amazing...especially wrapped inside that naan. mmmmm! Good luck on the challenge...I would cry. daily. ;P

  7. The salmon tikka sounds wonderful, especially on top of the delicious garlic naan, yum! Looking forward to your posts for the challenge.

  8. Good luck on your challenge! That's fanastic..I'm impressed :-)
    I like this salmon dish you made and you know, I haven't checked out the Revolution book yet. I seem to have every other copy of Jamie's books at home.

    Nice photos - very appealing.

  9. You and Jamie are on a roll:) The salmon looks coated with delicious flavor. Love this served in a fluffy naan bread.

    The 28 day challenge sounds like a tough one, but I know you can do it!

    Off to check out your SS roundup.

  10. This is a beautiful, fresh-looking dish, Deb. Like Kim said, you and Jamie are working well together. Not so much w/ me for some reason...and it's bumming me out!

    Good luck with your challenge. I know you can do it.

  11. Tikka salmon? That sounds so great! I never would have considered that. I'm so interested to follow you throughout your challenge! I hope all goes well. I know you'll be eating lots of awesome food and will likely give me some ideas as well.

  12. Deb, this looks wonderful!!! Such savory combinations!

  13. Mmm, I want this sammich! Love that you wrapped the salmon tikka in a garlic naan. It all looks so wonderful.
    Good luck with the challenge - what is the reasoning for no oil?

  14. I remember seeing a video of him cooking that a while back and saying I needed to do it. It seemed so easy and good. That is what you seemed to think too :-) I have some salmon in the freezer that I'll be using, I think!

  15. Your tikka looks excellent on the naan bread! Best of luck with your challenge!


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