Wild-caught Alaskan salmon is notably some of the best in the world; buttery soft, pink flesh packed with heart-healthy, nutritional value. The spring run is well underway, with fishmongers clamoring for the prized salmon that is harvested from the Copper River. Most of our local markets are offering freshly delivered whole and filleted salmon at remarkably great prices.
Let’s talk about a few of the types of salmon at our disposal: Pink is the smallest and most prolific salmon. The flesh is pale pink and flaky, with lower oil content. Keta or Silverbrite is the most economical variety, so it won’t be a budget-breaker to add to your mealtime repertoire. The meat is mild, firm and whitish pink. The most sought after, Sockeye has a very rich and luscious flavor. The fish is firm with a deep red hue which comes from dining on orange krill.
Grilling, poaching, planking and pan searing are some of the ways to prepare fresh salmon. Pan searing is a stovetop technique using a fairly high heat to form a caramelized crust, which seals in the juices. When using this method of cooking, make sure you have a heavy-bottomed skillet. This will assure an even heat distribution. Heat the skillet and test it by splashing a few drops of water into the pan. If it sizzles, add oil or a pat of butter and it’s ready to use.
Utilizing high-quality ingredients purchased from your favorite grocer, this is a simple meal. If you have a little more time to spare, do try making your own pesto and ravioli.
Pan-Seared Salmon with Spinach Ravioli
- 1 lb Sockeye Salmon fillets cut into 4 pieces
- Salt, pepper and garlic
- Trader Joe’s Everyday Seasoning
- 1 package fresh spinach and ricotta ravioli
- ½ cup pesto
- 8 cups baby salad greens
- Olive oil and balsamic vinegar
Heat pan over high heat, add oil to coat pan. Season salmon fillets with salt, pepper, garlic and Everyday Seasoning. Place in pan, skin side down for 3 to 4 minutes. Cover and cook until salmon is moist and flaky, approximately 5 more minutes, depending on the thickness.
Cook ravioli according to package directions. Drain and keep warm.
Lightly dress the baby greens with olive oil and vinegar.
To plate: Place 2 cups of salad greens on each plate. Lay the fillet to one side and the ravioli to the other. Spoon 2 tablespoons of pesto over the salmon and ravioli. Enjoy with crusty bread.