Weekend breakfasts have been out of this world lately. Just about every Sunday we sleep in, then cook up a great brunch and listen to our motown playlist while reading the paper. It makes me feel like my life is grown-up in the way I used to think about adults on tv shows as a kid, like Denise Huxtable or most of the cast of ThirtySomething. Anyway, for this, we skipped the traditional english muffin base and used polenta baked with butter and sage, which was incredible. Then, of course, Wild for Salmon’s unbeatable Hickory Smoked Salmon (and seriously, I don’t know if I can ever go back to salmon other than wild-caught like this – night and day difference between the two), gently poached eggies and the lemon-dill sauce. It’s December. Make this then snuggle up with somebody you love this weekend.
POLENTA EGGS BENEDICT WITH SMOKED SALMON AND LEMON-DILL SAUCE (makes breakfast for 2 very lucky guests)
– 4 eggs
– Lemon-Dill sauce
– 4 precooked polenta circles
– chopped fresh sage, approx. 8 leaves
– 4 tbsp. butter
– Wild for Salmon’s Hickory Smoked Salmon
1. Get the polenta ready. You want to get a package of it precooked, then cut it into 1/2 inch slices.
2. Next, cut circles out of those slices with either a cookie cutter or a measuring cup (Kitchen hacks. You’re welcome).
3. Melt the butter, chop up the sage, and combine.
4. Brush the polenta on both sides with the butter and sage mixture. Bake at 400 for approx. 30 minutes, or until firmer (crispy-ish) and golden. Set aside to cool while you make the eggs.
Thanksgiving this year was the most delicious one ever, which meant I totally overdid it. So yesterday and today have been full of Nutribullets and limited carbs. For lunch today, Brendan came home and we made Wild for Salmon’s feta-dill salmon burgers, topped them with thin slices of avocado and a simple lemony dill sauce, then wrapped them in lettuce for a super healthy, quick and delicious lunch. I’ve tried to copy these burgers before, but have to admit defeat when I taste it. Nothing comes close to these burgers stuffed with feta and dill.
HOLIDAY DETOX BURGER (makes 2)
– 3 large iceberg lettuce leaves
– 2 Wild for Salmon’s feta-dill salmon burgers
– Lemon-Dill sauce
– 1/2 avocado, thinly sliced
1. Lightly spray a grill pan with cooking spray. Heat to medium.
2. Cook the salmon burgers, approx. 2 minutes on each side, until cooked through. Try to get those “sweet grill marks”, if you’re Brendan. Why do guys love these so much??
Not gonna lie, I felt pretty pleased with myself making these. The saltiness/savoriness of the salmon combined with the creamy avocado is perfect, they have 4 ingredients, tops, are chock full of Omega-3s – the “good for you fats” – which help with your cardiovascular health, eyesight, joints and a whole bunch of other things, have a hint of the bright flavor of lemon (which adds detox benefits) and if you use Wild for Salmon’s Dill and Orange Gravlax, you can skip the dill altogether. I did a couple of these with a light coating of toasted sesame seeds, but that’s up to you. These were ready in no time, and gone in about that same amount too.
SALMON AND AVOCADO APPS WITH LEMON AND DILL (makes about 30)
– 3 avocados, cut into approx. 3/4 inch chunks
– Wild for Salmon’s Dill and Orange Gravlax (or smoked salmon if you can’t find this, but please try because this is amazing.)
– juice of 1 lemon
– pinch of kosher salt
– sesame seeds (optional)
1. Cut the avocados into approx. 3/4 inch chunks.
2. Add to a bowl and toss with the lemon juice and the pinch of salt – this will keep the avocado from browning.
These little guys are our go-to appetizers for almost every gathering, and they’re also the first things that disappear. They’re fantastic. For these appetizers, I’m psyched to be working with Wild for Salmon, a Pennsylvania company run by Steve, a thirty-something who went from Penn State to Idaho to Alaska, where he (luckily for us) learned how to catch this amazing wild salmon, and then decided to bring that skill, and those products, back to his home state. I’ve been a fan of Wild for Salmon for a couple years now, always buying it at Hillside Farms, but getting to see the business itself was awesome – it’s a family-run operation (I met Steve, his mom, his wife Jenn and their adorable daughter Ava Jane while I was there) and they really care about what they produce, and where it comes from. Steve and Jenn either go on regular fishing trips to Alaska for Wild for Salmon’s products, or they personally know the fisherman who catch it for them, which is really impressive. I used their Dill & Orange Gravlax for this recipe, which was perfect – there is no mistaking the difference between this and the usual farm-raised salmon that you buy at the grocery store. Get in touch with Wild for Salmon and treat yourself to the real deal.
Thanksgiving is this week – bring these apps to wherever you’re going and watch them disappear in no time flat.
SALMON APPETIZERS WITH CUCUMBER, DILL, RED ONION AND CREME FRAICHE (makes about 40)
– Sturdy Potato Chips (Kettle is good, but you can always make these yourself – & please do, because they’re awesome, simple & way healthier for you than the ones you buy at a store)
– 1/2 English Cucumber, chopped
– 1/2 Red Onion, minced
– Fresh Dill
– Creme Fraiche – we used this Lemon-Dill sauce and that was terrific, or you could always just use cream cheese
1. Get everything grouped into little stations for quick assembling.
2. Chop the cucumber and mince the red onion.
3. Get out Wild for Salmon’s gorgeous Dill & Orange Gravlax.