Crisp Atlantic Salmon on Lentils with Moroccan Spiced Tomato Sauce with Harissa, Served with Tzatziki and Grilled Nan Bread
- Begin the sauce:
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cups shallots, peeled and chopped
- 1/4 cup garlic, peeled and chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon harissa
- 2 beefsteak tomatoes (or 6 plum), chopped
- Prepare the Spice Mix:
- 1/2 cup coriander seeds
- 1/4 cup cumin seed
- 1/2 cup fennel seed
- 2 tablespoons cloves
- 1/4 cup cardamom
- Make the lentils:
- 5 cups blanched lentils
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Salt and pepper
- Cook the salmon:
- Six 7-ounce skin-on boneless fillets
- Spice blend for seasoning
- Butter (1/2 teaspoon per fillet) and olive oil for sauteing
- Prepare the nan bread:
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 pieces nan bread (or other Mediterranean flat bread)
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat, add the shallots and garlic, and season. Saute until the vegetables are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the harissa and stir. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and 4 tablespoons of the spice blend, or to taste.
Toast the above in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for five minutes (or on the stove over medium heat). Grind the mixture in a spice or coffee grinder.
Coat the salmon.
Finish the Sauce:
Working in batches, puree the mixture in a food processor, until the liquid is smooth. Set aside until ready to use. Makes enough for at least twelve fillets.
Heat saute pan, add stock and lentils and simmer until liquid almost evaporates. Stir in butter, season and serve.
Bring two saute pans to high heat, add the olive oil, and when hot, add salmon fillets, skin-side down (do not crowd pan). Shake pans to be sure the fillets are not sticking. Add the butter little bits at a time, shaking the pan to incorporate the butter into the oil. Place pan in oven for 4-5 minutes to roast.
Make the tzatziki: 32 ounces yogurt 2 English cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced 4 cloves of garlic, minced 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped 1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice Salt and pepper to taste
Place yogurt in cheese cloth, tie the end closed with kitchen string and hang it on a rack, above a bowl, in the refrigerator. Allow to drain for two hours or overnight. Discard the liquid in the bowl, and blend the yogurt with the remaining ingredients.
Combine oil, garlic and salt. Using a pastry brush, coat the bread lightly with the oil and place on grill. Cook to mark bread, turn to mark other side and serve.
Mound lentils in center of plate. Place salmon fillet on top, skin side up. Surround with sauce. Present with side dishes of tzatziki and nan bread.