Thursday, March 4, 2010

Pome-quat Salmon Salad

About a month ago we went to "The Fish Grotto" in Portland for dinner. It was a restaurant that had a better impression in the inside then on the outside. It was very dark inside, with leather upholstery and rich finishes on the wood and I was skeptical at first. Darkness bothers me, to me it feels unsanitary in a hidden kind of way but looking around I noticed that even though the place was old it was very clean as well as updated. Using modern lighting they somehow managed to make the atmosphere seem light and easy. Looking at the menu it offered the usual classic dishes and I searched for something new. Its not always that I know exactly what I want, but this happened to be a day where I did. I wanted sweetness to be set apart with tartness, crisp to contrast against the smooth finish, and fruity to be savory.

This was not traditional by any means and I asked the waiter if they had any specials. As it turned out they did. With the restaurant being so old they kept the classic menu as well as hire on a chef that could create a "specials" menu every week using seasonal ingredients. I was thrilled to eat a salad that kept me interested enough to not only attempt to make at home but crave it again and again.

Here is my version, it doesn't do it justice but I still love it.

Kumquat and Pomegranate Salmon Salad

1/2 cup of Kumquats
1/2 cup of Pomegranate Seeds
(Trader Joes has Frozen ones)
1/2 cup green onion
1/2 Bunch Green leaf lettuce

Salmon, salted and fried.

Orange Muscat Champagne Vinaigrette

1/4 cup Muscot Orange Champane Vinegar
(Get it at Trader Joes)
1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Little bit of honey
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Make the salad by chopping the greens, halving the Kumquats and shredding the salmon. Add the pomegranate seeds and make the vinaigrette. Since it is a small batch I use a medium measuring cup and whisk. Add the honey, vinegar and a pinch of salt as well as pepper. Begin to whisk the ingredients as you add the oil in a steady stream until incorporated. Taste the flavor because I don't measure the amount of oil so you might need to adjust it a little to suit your preference.

Seasonal, Hope

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