Life Style

Salmon, Two Ways: One Epic, One Everyday

Capers and lemon find their way into both a simple salmon recipe and a more complex one.

Story Highlights
  • Knowledge is power
  • The Future Of Possible
  • Hibs and Ross County fans on final
  • Tip of the day: That man again
  • Hibs and Ross County fans on final
  • Spieth in danger of missing cut

Recently, I have been spending time simplifying some old recipes.

“Not everyone has a couple of hours to spare in the kitchen on a school night,” my sister once said to me, voicing a familiar complaint about the time commitment demanded by some of my dishes.

“I know, I know,” I said, and offered my standard response. “But, hey, when you get to taste them — it all make total sense, right?”

“I guess so,” she conceded, with a lack of conviction reserved for close family members.

Even if I try to let such grievances glide like water over my proverbial duck’s back, they do make me ask myself about the circumstances under which people cook. Is there a way to deliver the impact I like my food to have — surprising, complex, bold and, of course, delicious — without having to put together 18 ingredients and set aside the two hours my sister can’t spare when cooking for her family? The short answer to this question is yes, but there is more to it than that.

In the next few months, I’ll be using these pages to offer two variations on a theme in each column: one recipe that you can whip up quickly without breaking your back or your bank balance; another one that will be a more involved, special occasion kind of dish in which you’ll happily invest time and resources. My hope is that two versions on a common theme will allow you, the reader, and me to better understand the particular conditions under which we cook and the kind of dishes that work best. It will also offer extra-busy people (like my dear sister) an opportunity to try out the particular ingredients and flavor combinations I get so excited about.

My focus today is salmon. I am taking inspiration for these two recipes from the two tips of Europe: Sweden at the very north for my “epic” recipe and Sicily in the south for the everyday version.

I give a traditional Nordic laxpudding, a cozy bake of potatoes, salmon and dill, bright Mediterranean touches from capers and lemon. And a quick pan-seared fillet, that most modern of preparations, benefits from the classic Sicilian contrast of currants, olives and pine nuts. How the fish is cooked is entirely different in these two versions but, put together, they show the versatility of salmon and how well it adapts to different culinary circumstances.

Source: Yotam Ottolenghi – NYT


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