Broiled Blackened Salmon and Sides

DSC_00012 lbs salmon fillet
1 Tablespoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (up to 1 teaspoon depending on how hot you like it)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon marjoram
1 clove garlic; crushed
2 Tablespoons red wine
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Brush a baking sheet with olive oil. Cut salmon fillet into (roughly) 1/4 lb sections, rinse, pat dry and set aside. Combine remaining ingredients in a food processor and process until well combined and pureed.  Pour the paprika and spice puree into a shallow dish. Dip each salmon fillet section covering both sides in the spice puree and place on prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours. Preheat oven to 400. Change oven to broil and place salmon under the broiler for 8-10 minutes (depending on the thickness) until cooked through.

Serve with your favorite sides. Pictured here with zucchini and summer squash with dill, lightly dressed green beans, Puerto Rican style rice and pigeon peas, massaged kale with carrot salad and marinated cucumbers.

Puerto Rican Style Rice and Pigeon Peas
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 onion; diced
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 green pepper; diced
1-2 cloves garlic; crushed
¼ cup olives; optional
½ cup diced fresh tomatoes or sauce
1 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4-1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups frozen pigeon peas (found in the frozen Goya section)
2 cups brown rice (I used jasmine); soaked in water 3-8 hours, rinsed and drained
3 1/2 cups water

Preheat a side bottom pot over medium heat, add olive oil, onion and salt and sauté until soft and transparent, about 5 minutes. Add peppers and garlic, sauté for 3 more minutes. Add optional olives, tomatoes and spices. Simmer for 1-2 minutes. Add pigeon peas, rice and water. Bring to a boil, stir and turn down heat bringing the rice mixture to a slow simmer. Simmer without a lid until almost all the water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Do not stir as this can make the rice sticky. Cover, turn heat to low and allow to slow cook/steam until rice is tender and all of the water is absorbed, another 10-15 minutes.

Massaged Kale with Carrot Salad
1 large bunch kale
4 small/2 large carrots; shredded (about 1 1/2 cups
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
pinch fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup sunflower seeds; optional

Rinse kale, pat dry and tear the leaf part off of the thick center stem. Tear the kale into pieces no larger than 2×2 inches. Grab handfuls of the kale and massage– crunch in handfuls and rub between both palms to break up the cellulose and place in a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients, toss and serve.

Marinated Cucumber Salad
1 cucumber; thinly sliced into circles
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
pinch white pepper
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar

Combine all ingredients, toss and set aside for 5 minutes. Toss and set aside for another 5 and repeat a few times. The salt will remove some water from the cucumbers and they will also be coated nicely with the tang of the vinegar.

(The green beans and zucchini and squash are sides brought by friends, sorry no recipes.)

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