Thursday, March 24, 2011

Salmon with Lemon, Capers & Rosemary and Arugula-Walnut Pesto Fettuccine to Say "Arrivederci Giada!"

This week after six-months of cooking with Giada De Laurentiis at I Heart Cooking Clubs it is time to say "Arrivederci Giada!" as we move on to chef Jamie Oliver next week. Although not everyone clicked with Giada, she and I worked well together and turned out some pretty great dishes. (Just click on the Giada De Laurentiis label on my side bar to see what all we cooked.) I have been on a salmon kick lately (large Costco bag of wild salmon fillets in my freezer), and Giada has plenty of easy salmon dishes to choose from like this recipe that I can't believe I didn't stumble over before, Salmon with Lemon, Capers & Rosemary. Yep, it has my name written all over it and is the perfect Giada dish for me to end on.

This recipes comes from an episode of Everyday Italian called "Summer Beach Party" and Giada cooks the salmon in its individual foil packets outside on a grill. I chose to cook my little foil salmon packets in the oven. I decided to pair the bright, sunny flavors of the fish with a non-Giada recipe, Whole Wheat Fettuccine with Arugula-Walnut Pesto from a recipe I clipped out of Fine Cooking magazine. I had a good amount of leftover local baby arugula that I didn't want to go to waste and the peppery pesto sounded like a good match.

This is a quick and easy dinner to put together--put the salmon in the oven, the pasta on to boil and the pesto in the food processor and in less than 30 minutes you have a delicious meal chock full of those wonderful Omega-3's from the salmon and the walnuts. ;-)

You can find the salmon recipe at Food Network here.

Salmon with Lemon, Capers & Rosemary
Courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis
(Serves 4)

4 (6-oz) salmon fillets
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary leaves
8 lemon slices (about 2 lemons)
1/4 cup lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
1/2 cup Marsala wine (or white wine) (I used white wine)
4 tsps capers (I used extra capers of course!)

4 pieces of aluminum foil

Brush top and bottom of salmon fillets with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Place each piece of seasoned salmon on a piece of foil large enough to fold over and seal. Top the each piece of salmon with 2 lemon slices, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of wine, and 1 teaspoon of capers. Wrap up salmon tightly in the foil packets.

Place a grill pan over medium-high heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Place the foil packets on the hot grill and cook for 10 minutes for a 1-inch thick piece of salmon. Serve in the foil packets.

Note: I just cooked my foil packets on a pan in the oven at 400 F. for about 20 minutes and it was cooked perfectly for me.


You can find the pesto recipe at the Fine Cooking website here.

Whole Wheat Fettuccine with Arugula-Walnut Pesto
Courtesy of Fine Cooking April/May 2006
(Serves 4-6)

4 oz. arugula, washed and spun dry (about 3 lightly packed cups)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano; more for sprinkling
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 clove garlic, smashed and peeled
Kosher salt
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup walnut oil
1 lb. dried fettuccine (I used whole wheat)

Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat.

Meanwhile, put the arugula, Parmigiano, walnuts, lemon juice, garlic, and 1 tsp. salt into a food processor, and process until the mixture is finely ground, 30 to 60 seconds. In a measuring cup, combine the olive oil and walnut oil. With the food processor running, drizzle the oil through the feed tube, and process the mixture until mostly smooth.

Cook the fettuccine in the boiling water until it’s al dente, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain. In a medium bowl, toss the fettuccine with enough of the pesto to generously coat the pasta. Serve sprinkled with extra Parmigiano, if desired.

Notes/Results: I think Salmon with Lemon, Capers and Rosemary pretty much says it all. ;-) Cooked in the lemon juice and wine, the salmon is tender and juicy and has excellent flavor--salmon and foil packets are made for each other. I was worried the pesto might be too peppery/bitter but between the Parmesan and the walnut oil, it mellowed out nicely, was quite tasty, and it paired really well with the salmon. Two healthy and satisfying dishes that I will make again.

You can check out how the other IHCC participants said Arrivederci Giada! by going to the post here and following the links.


  1. Well you definitely saw giada out with a bang! I love the salmon/lemon/caper's just so classically beautiful!

  2. Oh, this does have DEB written written all over it! What a great way to send Giada off. Looks delicious and healthy :D

  3. Yea!! I have been looking for a salmon recipe as I have a beautiful piece of salmon in my freezer given to me by a friend that caught it on an Alaskan fishing trip. This has to be good..lemon and capers, oh my! ~Leslie

  4. Great Pick for our last week with Giada! And i really have to start eating more fish....

  5. That looks so delicious! I've loved your dishes from Giada!

  6. Ciao ! i wish I could have it now for dinner ! Wonderful !

  7. I love Giada, I'd totally marry her if that were my thing. ;)
    I love the pesto pasta with this salmon dish, perfect. I will absoultely be making this one.
    Costco has such a good deal on wild salmon {Good for you for going wild!}
    If you like salmon, check out my latest post 'Chardonnay Poached Salmon with Fennel and Chardonnay'.

  8. Deb - I wish I had Costco here so that I could buy up that salmon! I have the hardest time finding good fish here. This is a beautiful and bright dish and a perfect one to end our 6 months with Giada. Another keeper!

  9. They each sound so delicious all on their own - pairing them together must of been off the charts! I've loved everything you made with Giada!

  10. I definitely have to try salmon in foil packs. The pasta sounds so good. It's been so long since I've had arugula. One of my favorites.

  11. wonderful recipe :) following u

  12. Wow, this really is a Deb dish! Perfectly tangy and healthy and delicious. And I am so hungry now. I should stop visiting my friends before dinner. ☺

  13. I heart rosemary A LOT and have recently fallen for capers.What a classy dish for a cool chef!

  14. Yum! I love Giada and all of her recipes. It looks so healthy :)

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