I’ve been rooting through the freezer and store cupboards the last few days to make a meal or two. This is for several reasons – a good old clear out was well overdue and the food budget has been tested over the holidays and I don’t want to go into the red. Lurking in the depths of the freezer were a couple of salmon fillets and at the back of the cupboard was a can of green lentils – both together
made a pretty fine meal with the addition of some harissa paste and a couple of handfuls of fresh watercress that I bagged locally in the ‘reduced’ section of the supermarket.
The recipe for using all of them is below and it’s surprisingly versatile. So for those of you who say ‘I don’t like spicy, chilli or hot’ then replace the harissa with some other paste like a mild curry, sun-dried tomato or pesto variety; for those who don’t tolerate or can’t get their hands on watercress/arugula, consider some rocket or spinach leaves instead or even some chopped fresh herbs that do tickle your taste buds; for those who turn up their noses at lentils look at some other pulses, beans or grains – cook from scratch, use a ready-prepared pouch or substitute with deli-prepared mixture; and if you don’t like, are tired of,or want something instead of salmon, then look to the freezer or chiller section for other fish choices like bass, cod, plaice, sole, hake or halibut – whatever takes your fancy or suits your wallet!
What you’ll end up with is a hot dish for a cold day; a high protein option with the addition of plenty of fibre; and a meal on the table in under 15 minutes. It’s another versatile bowl-food recipe that I am bound to come back to again and again.
CHILLI SALMON WITH WATERCRESS LENTILS
2 tsp harissa or other chilli type paste
400 g/14 oz can green lentils, rinsed and drained
50 ml/4 tbsp vegetable stock/bouillon
2 x 120 g/generous 4 oz salmon fillets
2 large handfuls watercress/arugula
grated rind and juice of 1/2-1 lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Place the harissa paste in a lidded, non-stick frying/saute pan and cook briefly until it becomes fragrant. Add the lentils and stock/bouillon and stir well to combine.
- Lay the salmon on top of the lentils, sprinkle with half of the lemon rind and juice, cover tightly with the pan lid and steam for 8-10 minutes until cooked.
- Once cooked, remove the salmon and keep warm. Turn up the heat, add the watercress/arugula, remaining lemon rind and juice and salt and pepper to taste, mixing well. Heat through until the watercress/arugula is wilted.
- Spoon into warmed serving bowls and top with the salmon to serve.
WLS PORTION: 1/2
CALORIES PER PORTION: 360
Image courtesy of watercress.co.uk