Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dinner Tonight: Marinated Salmon with Couscous

Tonight I was reminded what a blessing it is to be able to cook. Knowing how to read and execute recipes means that anything is possible in the kitchen. It means that you never have to eat the same thing twice if you choose not to - and it means you can eat the same well-executed dish over and over again if you find a recipe you really love. As I sat down to dinner tonight, I thought about how much we'd probably pay for a similar meal at a restaurant and concluded that it'd cost at least three times as much. So not only do I gain satisfaction from cooking for myself and Mr. Fritz, we also save money without sacrificing quality or taste. I realize that this revelation is nothing new, but it is good to remember why I spend time in the kitchen as well as reflect on what we gain from it.

All that to say, tonight's meal was really good! And super easy. I adapted this recipe from the October 2009 issue of Everyday Food for Marinated Salmon Steaks with Couscous. I chose to use 6 oz salmon filets instead of salmon steaks, and I cut the rest of the recipe in half. Also, I didn't bother to marinate the salmon for 30 minutes as the recipe calls for, because ever since I read this story in the Washington Post about why there's no good reason to let something sit in a marinade, I've pretty much eliminated that resting time from every recipe I use that calls for marinating something. I slathered the salmon on both sides with the marinade, set it in a baking dish and baked it for 13 minutes at 375. And it came out perfectly. The couscous is infused with olive oil and lemon zest, and it's pretty essential for the meal, because the marinade has such a crazy kick to it thanks to the jalapeno pepper included in it. Mr. Fritz and I both liked this a lot, despite the fact that it was spicier than what we usually eat. I also appreciated that it was a new way to serve salmon (since I am always in search of new ways to serve salmon!) and really liked that it had sort of a Middle Eastern flavor to it. I will definitely make this again!

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