Chilean Salmon with Avocado Cream Sauce + Island Nectar

As promised last night on my facebook page, here is Chilean Salmon with Avocado Cream Sauce and a drink I made up to use the rest of the coconut water.  If you are following my facebook page (there is a button on the right hand side of this blog) you will know that I had a bit of a fiasco with this recipe last night.  Because I had such a thick piece of salmon, and didn’t want to cut it and take away from the photographic presentation, I ended up with a portion in the middle/bottom that wasn’t quite done.  Having the skin still on the bottom side didn’t help either.  It wasn’t a big deal though, as I just flaked off the parts that were done and then put the rest back in the skillet for a minute more until it was done.  It was quite the mess however since I had already put the sauce on top.  I suggest making sure your pieces are cut more reasonably though if you want to present a beautiful piece of fish on the plate.

The flavor of this salmon was fantastic!  The actual preparation of the salmon is very simple, but allowing the lemon juice to soak in a bit and then covering the top with a generous amount of course sea salt and pepper results in such a beautiful crust that is full of flavor and allows the actual salmon flavor to really be the star.  Topped with the cool, creamy, slightly spicy avocado cream dip this is melt in your mouth good!  As I mentioned, my piece of salmon still had the skin on one side, which can be nice for presentation if you like that sort of thing, but I feel like it kind of messes up the cooking process… at least in a hot skillet since it seems to block some of the heat from reaching that bottom side and making it through to the middle to ensure a fully cooked fillet.  It would also be nice without the skin to have the option to salt and pepper both sides for even more crust.

Note : my piece of salmon was quite wet to start, and I had forgotten to pat dry it a bit before putting the lemon juice on.  As a result when I placed in into the hot oil in my skillet there was a LOT of splash from the moisture which not only caused a disaster on my stove top, but also managed to give me quite a few little burns.  I imagine even if you do dry your fish off well before putting the lemon juice on it’s going to splatter a bit from the lemon juice so beware and consider having a splatter screen handy!  And here is another little tip when cooking fish in a skillet.  Once you set the fish down don’t touch it until you see the bottom is starting to brown and the color will start to change up the side of your fillet.  You want it to be about halfway before you flip it.  If you try to move it before it starts to crust over you chance breaking the fish or having it stick to the skillet.  Also, always use oil or non-stick spray and cook in a quality skillet.

Chilean Salmon w/ Avocado Cream Sauce

Serves : 2+                          Time to make : 15 minutes

Ingredients :

  • 1 lb fresh salmon fillets (2 good sized fillets or you can opt for smaller pieces to serve more people)
  • lemon
  • course sea salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • olive oil (about 2-3 T.)
  • 1 Haas avocado, about 2/3 cup
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 T. finely chopped shallots
  • 1/3 C. coconut water (I used Blue Monkey with pulp)
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • pinch chili powder
  • pinch smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. chopped chives

Directions :

  1. Pat dry your fillets and then place on a plate and squeeze the juice of one lemon over top and allow to sit for about 5-10 minutes.  Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until hot, but not smoking.  Generously sprinkle your course sea salt and fresh ground black pepper onto the salmon fillets before carefully placing into the hot oil.  Cook on the first side about 3-4 minutes depending on the thickness of your salmon until browned on bottom and the color has turned light pink about halfway up the side of your fillet.  Flip and cook through.
  2. Meanwhile for the sauce (It can help to have some of the sauce ingredients ready to go before you start cooking your salmon) cut open your avocado and scoop out the insides.  If you have never cut an avocado before what you do is take a knife and make a cut from top to bottom.  You won’t be able to cut through because of the pit, once you hit that sort of roll the knife around the avocado until you cut all the way around from top to bottom.  Holding both sides twist and pull and you’ll have two perfect halves with the pit in one of them.  I like to use a knife or spoon to pry the pit out at that point and then using a spoon slide it between the peel and the avocado and you can scoop it out in one swipe usually.
  3. Place all sauce ingredients together in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy.  Spoon over your finished salmon.

Recipe from : domestic fits

chileansalmon_avocadocream copy

Now for the drink… I am calling it Island Nectar because the flavors are very “Island-y” and it has Guava Nectar in it… real creative I know lol.  As I mentioned on the facebook page, I just wanted to use up the rest of the can of coconut milk and figured some sort of cocktail would be the way to go.  I have a rather diverse bar in my pantry from all the various drinks we have tried over the years so I knew I could probably come up with something.  Unfortunately the ones I wanted to use, such as the rum were pretty low, hence the somewhat random amounts listed, but it actually ended up just right for my tastes.  Jeff likes a lot more alcohol in his drinks, whereas I am more about the taste, so if you are more like him you might want to add some straight rum or vodka to it so as not to change the taste too much.

So without a real plan I just started pouring things together and at first it was AWFUL… I mean seriously bad.  This was around the point that it was just coconut water and guava nectar.  I hadn’t really ever tried guava nectar before, but had a few cans lying around for a drink I wanted to try from Guy Fieri.  It is definitely not something I would drink on it’s own… So I knew I needed to sweeten it up and just started grabbing other things I had and voila it was suddenly good!  I don’t know how much this makes, but it about filled a basic pitcher.

Island Nectar

makes : 1 pitcher

Ingredients :

  • 1 can Blue Monkey Coconut Water with pulp (or slightly less if you used some on the fish)
  • 1 (11.3oz) can guava nectar (I found some called Jumex in the beverage isle at the grocery store)
  • 1 can 7-up
  • 2 oz. triple sec
  • 6 oz. pineapple rum
  • 1 oz. vanilla flavored syrup (like for coffee drinks)
  • ice
  • mint sprigs or lime wedges for garnish (I didn’t have anything on hand)

Directions :

  1. Combine everything over a generous amount of ice in a pitcher and stir.

islandnectar copy

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