Thursday, May 3, 2012

Salmon with Oven-Roasted Turnips and Goat Cheese

Salmon is another GM favorite - smoked, poached, baked, smoked, smoked with caviar, smoked with scrambled eggs, smoked with toast points, onion, egg and capers, smoked with cream cheese and pesto. Oh wait, we were talking about BAKED salmon here - it's good too. This salmon recipe could not be a faster and more delicious dinner - the turnips can be made in bulk and the salmon quantities can be doubled or tripled depending on how many people you have. Turnips are definitely a Gour-Maybe vegetable. They seem foreign (at least to non-southerners), which makes them intriguing - but really they are just good ole root vegetables like potatoes or carrots - with a more complex flavor. Many people have never even had a turnip and most don't cook with them regularly, however, they are so easy to work with, once you get your head around cooking with turnips (or parsnips, or other unusual vegetables) you can add another check box on your "100 Foods to Eat" Facebook App. challenge! And you will walk confidently to the mis-labeled Central Market bin containing white turnips, but labeled Kohlrabi and laugh as you know the difference. Read the scoop after the jump.

Salmon with Oven-Roasted Turnips and Goat Cheese (serves 4)
You will need: 
  • 4 6 oz salmon filets (I go skin-on) (I hope I don't have to say FRESH - never, ever use frozen fish)
  • 3 large turnips peeled and chopped into 1 inch dice (appx 1.25 lbs) (or parsnips! you pick)
  • 1/4 C flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 4 T Dijon mustard
  • 2 T Olive oil
  • Plain Goat Cheese (chevre) - I like Montchevre
  • Kosher Salt
  • Fresh Ground black pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.  Take the diced turnips, and toss them in a bowl with the olive oil and about 1/2 T each of salt and pepper. Pour onto a baking sheet. There are a lot of turnips, you need a lot of salt and pepper. Put them in the oven, and bake for about 25-30 minutes, checking at half way to give them a stir, so they cook on all sides to a golden brown color.  Take your salmon filets and place them on a second baking sheet (skin side down) and season with a sprinkling of salt and pepper. Use 1 T each of the dijon mustard and spread across the top of each filet. sprinkle evenly with parsley. Ideally put these in the oven with about 15 minute to go on the turnips. You will have both finish at about the same time - the salmon takes about 12-15 to bake, based on thickness of the filets etc. What you want to see is an opaque piece of fish that is starting to flake. What you do not want to see is raw fish, or fish that is black, smoking or burned. That is not the smoked salmon we at Gour-Maybe want you to have. Plate the turnips with a salmon filet on top, sprinkle with goat cheese and parsley to make the plate sexy (the goat cheese also adds a nice creamy texture). And you're done!

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