Don’t you hate those crazy days when your feet hit the ground running in the morning and just never seem to be able to stop until the rest of you crumples in a sweaty, exhausted, glassy-eyed heap on the floor about twelve hours later? I’ll bet those of you that have already waved goodbye to forty know what I mean. And then, as you’re trying to resuscitate yourself, you’re met with hungry, quizzical eyes and the dreaded question, “What are you making for dinner?” ARGHHHH! At that point, I usually want to bare my teeth and snarl “Reservations!” But, I usually don’t. After all, it’s not their fault. Although, they could offer to help out once in a while. But, that’s a story for another day…..
Anyway, it’s on nights like those that I usually either call Pizza Hut or dig out a box of Hamburger Helper. No, I’m not proud of it. But I will admit that, on occasion, I have resorted to Hamburger Helper to fill the bellies of my loved ones. Cheeseburger Macaroni is my poison of choice.
Sometimes, however, before total delirium sets in, I still have the presence of mind stop at the store on my way home and pick up something that I can throw together in minutes to stave off the ravenous hordes. Well, not actual hordes. There are only three of us – four, if you count Bella. But, she’s usually happy with a bowl of kibble.
This Maple-Mustard Glazed Salmon is one of those “throw together” dishes. It is so light and flavorful and very easy to make. In fact, you probably already have all of the glaze ingredients in your pantry. All you do is mix some maple syrup, Dijon mustard and apple cider vinegar together, brush it on some fresh salmon, and then bake it. A total no-brainer! I also added some pureed chipotle peppers in adobo sauce to the glaze to give it a little kick, because I had some. A squirt of sriracha sauce does the trick too. You should try to get the nicest, freshest salmon you can, though. It makes a difference. I used a wild sockeye salmon this time.
I made a quick little Mango-Peach Salsa to serve alongside the salmon inspired by this recipe from Todd and Diane at White on Rice Couple . I really like the cool, sweet flavors of this fruit salsa with the glazed fish. If you don’t feel like doing any slicing and dicing, you can pick some pre-made stuff while you’re buying your fish at the market. Or, you could leave it out altogether. I also served this dish with some “steam in the bag” frozen vegetables. They come in a huge variety of different combinations, are soooo convenient and they are actually quite good. The whole point is to keep it simple.
So, the next time you find yourself in a time crunch or just can’t bear the thought of cooking a complicated dinner, remember that there are options. Not to sound like Rachael Ray but, you can serve your family a delicious and nutritious meal in less than the time it takes for the pizza delivery guy to get to your house. This whole meal took me less than thirty minutes to get on the table. If I can do it, so can you!
Maple-Mustard Glazed Salmon
4 6-ounce salmon fillets
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (none of that fake Log Cabin stuff)
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, pureed
Mango-Peach Salsa, optional (recipe follows)
Heat the oven to 400F.
Lightly salt and pepper the salmon and place on a baking sheet.
Whisk the rest of the ingredients together in a bowl and brush over the top of salmon.
Bake for about 5 minutes. Turn fillets over and brush with more glaze. Continue to bake for another 5 minutes.
Turn on the broiler, brush a little more glaze on the salmon and broil for 2-3 minutes or until the fillets are golden and caramelized.
Bring leftover glaze to a boil in a small saucepan. Continue to boil for a few minutes until glaze reduces a bit and becomes thick and syrupy.
To serve, drizzle reduced glaze over salmon and top with some mango-peach salsa.
inspired by White on Rice Couple
1 ripe mango, peeled and diced
1 large, ripe peach, peeled and diced
1 tomato, seeded and diced
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 small handful fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of one lime
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and toss. Let ingredients get friendly in the fridge until ready to use.
If you like this dish, you might also like some of these from the SGCC Archives: