The Lenten season has always meant a 40-day period of sacrifice or giving up something to identify with Christ and his suffering. Whether Catholic, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Reformed, Baptist, or nondenominational, we can all benefit from the season of reflection as we approach Resurrection Sunday.
My husband grew up Catholic and eating fish on Fridays during Lent was something he and his family did religiously. I didn’t practice this tradition growing up, but now I enjoy honoring Jesus in this way. You don’t need to adopt this into your holidays, but in case you already serve fish on Good Friday, why not try Salmon: Three Different Ways!
Salmon: Three Different Ways
PAN-SEARED GARLIC BUTTER SALMON, PESTO & FETA SALMON, & ORANGE TERIYAKI SALMON
By: Rae-Ellen Sanders
Pan-Seared Garlic Butter Salmon is simple and delicious. Go gourmet and add white wine for a tangy twist. Use an oaky or light Chardonnay or Pinot Gris. Do not use a sweet wine. Substitute chicken broth if you choose not to use wine.
1-2 pounds salmon (I prefer skinless- just one messy step to avoid), room temperature and patted dry
Salt and pepper (season both sides)
2 tablespoons butter, plus 1 tablespoon for sauce
3-6 cloves of garlic pressed fresh or use 2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/3 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
Lemon—cut in half (fresh squeezed is 100 times better than bottled)
- Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons butter to the pan and heat to simmering.
- Press garlic into butter and sauté till fragrant.
- Raise heat to high and add the salmon fillets. If salmon has skin, cook skin-side down for three minutes. When the fish is slightly crispy, flip it over, and cook for an additional 3 minutes on the other side (you will only flip your fish once). Cooking the salmon over high heat with the garlic, salt, pepper, and butter will create a beautiful crust on the fish!
- Check the fish using a fork towards the end of cooking. If it flakes easily, it is done. Do not overcook it, as it will also continue to cook slightly once removed from the pan. Transfer fish to a serving platter.
- Deglaze your pan by adding the wine or broth and scraping any browned bit off the bottom of your pan. Add lemon juice and the remaining tablespoon of butter and simmer for one minute.
- Pour butter sauce over your simple and delicious Garlic Butter Salmon and enjoy!
Note: When added to the plate, a green veggie, whether asparagus, broccoli, or string beans (check out Brandi’s Bacon Green Beans in Lent Week 3) creates a colorful accompaniment.
MEAL TWO: PESTO & FETA SALMON
Pesto & Feta Salmon is an all-time favorite at our house, and it is super easy. Spoon on garlic and pesto sauce, sprinkle with feta cheese, and bake. Voila!
1-2 pounds salmon (patted dry)
3-6 cloves of pressed garlic
1⁄2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1⁄4 cup prepared pesto
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Press garlic and spread over fish.
- Spoon pesto sauce on each filet.
- Sprinkle feta evenly over each piece.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Yummo!
Note: We’ve enjoyed this salmon alongside baked potatoes or salad with extra feta..
MEAL THREE: ORANGE TERIYAKI SALMON
This Orange Teriyaki Salmon is a tasty salmon made easy by steaming in tin foil. The foil locks in flavor and makes for easy cleanup. Take this on the road and make your next camping trip a gastronome (gourmet) experience. This can also be prepared by grilling in the woods or in your backyard. Prepare the ingredients for the Orange Teriyaki Sauce in a separate saucepan. Heat till sauce is thickened and slightly reduced. Blacken your salmon on the grill and drizzle sauce on top.
1-2 pounds salmon (patted dry, sprinkled with salt and pepper)
1⁄4 cup rice wine
1⁄4 cup orange juice
1⁄4 cup soy sauce
1⁄4 cup honey
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 teaspoons cornstarch
12-ounce bag frozen stir-fry vegetables
Directions: (for steamed version)
- Place salmon on an ample piece of tin foil in a shallow baking dish.
- Fold up the four sides, to prohibit leaking.
- Combine rice wine, orange juice, soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, and cornstarch. Whisk together. Don’t leave out the sesame oil—it makes all the difference!
- Heat sauce in a separate saucepan until thickened and slightly reduced.
- Layer frozen vegetables on top of salmon.
- Pour sauce over fish and vegetables.
- Seal tin foil.
- Bake in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes.
Serving Suggestion: Serve over Japanese noodles or white rice. Orange wedges make for an easy dessert and complete the meal.