Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chive-Caper Aioli

Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chive-Caper Aioli | windykitchen

Did anyone happen to catch this article in Salon a few months back? It’s called “I’m Not Ambitious, and That’s OK,” and I was really glad to read it. I feel like there have been a lotttttt of articles and books lately about women “having it all” (ugh), and — as this writer pointed out — they all seem to focus on women who want to take over the world and be CEOs and vice presidents and huge professional successes. And on the other side of the spectrum there’s Pinterest and lifestyle bloggers (including the oddly addicting sub-genre of Mormon housewife blogs; which I recently learned are fascinating) and people trying to feed their families 100% organic diets and undertake all kinds of wholesome-yet-exhausting domestic pursuits, like cloth diapering and composting and making their own laundry detergent. And all of those things are great, but no one’s really talking about the (presumably huge) group of people who aren’t really striving to be superstars in either the corporate or domestic realms. You know, the B+’ers. The people who just want jobs they don’t hate with paychecks that aren’t too tiny and plenty of time left over to spend on family, friends, and hobbies of medium-level intensity. My people.

So. That’s where this salmon comes in.

[You assumed I didn’t have a point with all of this, didn’t you? Well I do!]

I made this salmon for dinner one night, ate it, and thought, “Yum! Successful dinner. Time to watch Parks & Rec.” But it didn’t really wow me, and I kept thinking that it was because it needed a yummy sauce to go with it. This thought kept bugging me, so when I went to finish the salmon leftovers off the next day, I decided to experiment with a little caper-chive aioli-type sauce. Long story short: I’m a genius and the sauce took this salmon from “Yum!” to “YUMMMMM!”

Now, if I were striving for total domestic/blogging success and perfection, I’d probably remake the whole meal and get a great picture of the salmon together with the sauce, right? I certainly thought about it. But then I had a different thought — life is short and salmon is expensive. I decided that my internet friends would forgive me if this salmon was pictured sans sauce.

You forgive me, right?

Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chive-Caper Aioli | windykitchen

POTATO-CRUSTED SALMON WITH CHIVE-CAPER AIOLI (salmon adapted from Food & Wine; aioli adapted from Bon Appetit)

Ingredients for the salmon:
4 cups shredded potatoes (I shredded my own, but you could also use frozen, thawed hashbrowns)
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
3-4 tbsp flour
4 6-oz salmon filets, skin removed
salt and pepper
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Ingredients for the aioli:
1 cup mayonnaise or Greek yogurt (I used yogurt; ya’ll know my thing with mayonnaise)
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
2 tbsp capers, chopped and drained
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
a few dashes hot sauce
salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400. Place frozen potatoes in colander and sprinkle with salt. Let sit 10 minutes or so, then squeeze the excess moisture out of the potatoes. In medium bowl, combine potatoes with 1/4 cup snipped chives and 3-4 tbsp flour.
2. Heat vegetable oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season salmon filets with salt and pepper. Press potato mixture onto tops and bottoms of each salmon filet, pressing to coat.
3. Add salmon filets to skillet and cook 2 minutes per side, until potatoes are crispy and golden. Remove salmon to baking dish that has been coated with nonstick spray and continue cooking in the oven 8-10 minutes (should reach temperature of 145 degrees).
4. While salmon cooks, prepare aioli by mixing all ingredients in medium bowl. Chill until ready to serve (sauce can be made up to 1 day in advance).

So yeah. This was really, really good. The potatoes get nice and crispy, the salmon is rich and tasty, and the aioli lends that perfect zing. Successful sauce experimentation!

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2 thoughts on “Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chive-Caper Aioli

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