Happy New Year! To kick off 2012, my housemates and I have started a new round of the Whole30 program. (You might remember I did it this past October with some pretty awesome results.)
This time however, we have a formidable new ally in our midst, form of… DAN, THE FOOD PROCESSOR! (We didn’t really name him Dan.)
Having a food processor cuts down hugely on prep time, which means I’m free to experiment with a relatively low cost of failure. AND when the experiments turn out successful, as you’ve probably guessed: they’ll be here! And so, ladies and gents, I present to you…
Paleo Baked Salmon with Basil-Walnut Pesto
(with optional yummy side veggies!)
- 1/4 cup walnuts, ground or finely chopped
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 jalapeño pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp chopped basil
- 3 tbsp chopped spinach
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Pinch of black pepper
- 2 medium-sized salmon fillets
- Parchment paper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- lemon (optional)
Side veggies (if you want ‘em):
- 1 container grape tomatoes
- A handful of white mushrooms
- 2 tbsp olive oil
What you DO:
- Preheat the oven to 450°F.
- Ready the salmon. Sprinkle a little bit of olive oil on it, add some salt and pepper to your liking, place it on a parchment paper-lined cooking sheet.
- Prep the pesto! This is where a food processor comes in super handy. Chop up your garlic and jalapeño as finely as you can, along with the spinach, basil and walnut pieces if you haven’t already. Mix them together in a big bowl with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake the salmon in the oven for 12-15 minutes.
- (OPTIONAL VEGGIE STEP) If you want the side veggies, this should be the last thing you do (ideally, right before you eat or serve it). Coarsely chop mushrooms. Turn a frying pan onto medium heat and add olive oil. Once heated, add the tomatoes and mushrooms and let them cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. At this point, the tomatoes have turned into those awesome tomato grenades that burst in your mouth AND as a bonus, they go great with the pesto
- Remove salmon, add pesto, garnish with lemon (also optional).
And there you have it! Easy peasy, you can make the whole thing in under an hour, looks and tastes fancy, serves two. A good meal to serve your significant other who doesn’t believe you can cook ;D