Wednesday, January 18, 2012

RECIPE: Salmon-Stuffed Softbreads with Dill Aioli

I'm really lucky to live in relative proximity to a whole foods store (that is, around 45 minutes away).  We have this lovely big whole foods grocery out this direction that stocks a wide variety of fresh-baked sprouted grain breads, and they also carry a few other sprouted grain options (pasta, tortillas, and the like).  Last time I was there, I found these lovely sprouted-grain softbreads that are somewhere between naan and pita, but open up in the middle to allow for all sorts of options.

I adapted this recipe from a much more bold variant I found online (it went in for tomatoes and suchlike), but I made some significant changes.  I wanted the dill and the lime to speak loudest, making a cool and slightly sharp contrast to the salmon.  I cut back on the oil and I switched out yogurt for mayonnaise like I always do, and the end result tastes about as healthy as pan-fried foods can.


1/2 to 1 cup oil (I used half vegetable and half olive oil)
2 halibut fillets
1 teaspoon cumin
5 teaspoons lime juice    
1 egg
2 teaspoons icewater
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 & 1/2 cups rolled oats, crumbled    
4-6 soft flatbread rounds (or corn tortillas)
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon lime zest
5 teaspoons lime juice
3 teaspoons fresh dill, minced
1 small sweet onion, chopped
1 avocado, sliced


To make the dill aioli, mix the yogurt, lime zest, 2 teaspoons lime juice, chopped dill, and garlic together.  Keep this refrigerated while you prepare the rest of the meal.

Heat oil in saucepan to medium (or just slightly under) heat.  Cut salmon filets into strips and place in a bowl.  Sprinkle cumin and your remaining 3 teaspoons of lime juice over fish.

In a separate bowl, mix your egg and icewater with your cornstarch to make a kind of tempura.  Dredge the fish strips in the batter and then in the crumbled oats (you could use Panko here if you prefer, but the oats complement the salmon perfectly).  Roll the fish in the oats to make sure your strips are completely coated.

Fry fish in the preheated oil a few pieces at a time, making sure to give them enough room, for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown on all sides.  Place fried fish strips on paper towel to drain.  Once your fish are finished cooking, drain all but a little oil and use the remainder to caramelize your onions.

To assemble the final product, slice your softbreads in half and fill with fish strips, topping with avacado, caramelized onion, and your dill aioli sauce.

VERDICT: I really, really enjoyed this meal.  It was a bit fiddly to make, sure, but it didn't take overly long and the final product was absolutely scrumptuous.  I love finding new uses for salmon, and this one was excellent!

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