Nutritionists, Maria and I, are taking it in turns to share our evening meals with you this week, and tonight it’s my turn. I went out and enjoyed a lovely family dinner at Cote Brasserie last night, and it was steaks all round, delicious! So tonight I am in the mood for something a little lighter and have decided to go for salmon – rich in omega 3 fatty acids and a good quality protein to keep blood sugar balanced. To add interesting flavour I’m topping the salmon with a dairy-free pesto style topping, and serving it with some herby sweet potato wedges and greens. As nutritionists we always advise people to cover half of their dinner plates with green vegetables or salads to provide nutrients, antioxidants and fibre, so be generous with your greens.
Basil salmon with herby sweet potatoes, oven-baked courgette and greens
4 salmon fillets
Handful fresh basil
1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 small clove garlic
Small pinch sea salt
3-4 sweet potatoes, peeled
1.5 tbsp coconut oil
Small handful fresh herbs roughly chopped/torn – I’m using sage, thyme and rosemary
2-3 courgettes, thinly sliced (about 1/4 cm)
Green vegetables of your choice – I’m having kale and home-grown green beans
Preheat the oven to 180-190 degrees C. In a large oven-proof dish, melt the coconut oil in the oven, meanwhile slice the peeled sweet potatoes lengthways into wedges. When the oil has melted, add the sweet potato wedges, herbs, some sea salt and pepper, toss to coat the sweet potatoes and bake for about 45 minutes. The coconut flavour from the oil is so mild you will barely notice it.
Meanwhile, put the basil, garlic, sea salt and olive oil into a small food processor or use a stick blender to whizz until smooth. By all means add some pine nuts and parmesan cheese if you want to make a more authentic pesto topping. Place the salmon fillets into an oven-proof dish and spread the basil mixture evenly onto the four salmon fillets. Arrange the sliced courgettes into another oven-proof dish, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. When the sweet potatoes have about 20 minutes left to cook, pop the salmon and courgettes into the oven, they should all be done at about the same time but check the salmon after 15 minutes so as not to overcook it.
While the salmon and courgettes are cooking, prepare the green vegetables and steam until tender. Assemble everything on the plates and enjoy and eat like nutritionists!