With all the pork, oxtail and beef posts lately, one would think that’s all we ate. But we really have been trying to eat more fish lately, like this Easy Salmon Pie recipe from Sunny Anderson. Not only is this dish easy, it has spinach as part of the pie, which “beefs” up the health factor in my book. And I should also mention that this heats up great as a leftover in the toaster oven!
I reduced the servings to 2 but even then, we had a tough time finishing a whole pie each. They don’t seem that big but they are surprisingly filling. I also tweaked the amount of lemon juice a bit since I don’t like my fish overly lemony. On this night, I served it with a simple green leaf and pickled beet salad with homemade goat cheese dressing (goat cheese whisked with milk, salt and pepper). Boy, that tender flaky puff pastry was so good with the salmon. The mushrooms and spinach filling was really good, extra garlicky! I was surprised how nicely the sour cream and lemon juice worked to bring it all together.
Adapted from Sunny Anderson’s recipe:
- 2 (6-7 oz) center cut salmon fillets, skin removed
- zest from half a lemon
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 1/2 small Vidalia onion, chopped, ~1/4 cup
- 2 cloves garlic, minced, separated
- 1 cup chopped brown mushrooms, stems discarded (or other mushrooms)
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
- 2 cups washed, dried, and loosely packed fresh baby spinach
- 2 tablespoon sour cream
- 1 frozen puff pastry sheets, defrosted
- Chopped fresh parsley leaves, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Season both sides of the salmon with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
Warm 1 tablespoons oil in 2 separate skillets over medium-high heat. Add half of the onion and half the garlic to each pan. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the mushrooms and thyme into 1 pan and the spinach, lemon zest and lemon juice in the other pan. Stir the spinach until it wilts and set aside. Saute the mushrooms until they are tender, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the sour cream. Set aside.
If the salmon fillet is not the same thickness in length, trim the thinner ends of the fillet so to get even thickness. I bought skinless salmon fillets that were pretty even in thickness.
Unroll a pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. Pass a rolling pin lightly over 2 or 3 times to seal the seams and lengthen slightly. The length and width of the pastry sheet should be about 1 inch wider and longer than the salmon fillet. This will allow the edges to be folded over to seal the pie. For my fillets, I ended up cutting the pastry sheet in half. Lightly prick the 4 strips with a fork.
Put 1 heaping spoonful of mushroom mixture on 1 half of each pastry, top with salmon, then layer with a heaping spoonful of spinach mixture. The first time I made it, I accidentally put the salmon down first and both the mushroom and spinach on top. Didn’t make a difference in texture of the puff pastry or the flavor of the pie.
Wet the edges of the pastry with water and fold over the other half, pressing lightly and folding to seal the edges. I used the tines of a fork to gently press the seams together. Repeat with remaining pastry and filling. Cut 2 vents on the top of each pastry packet and arrange them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Bake until the pastry is golden and fish is just opaque in the center, about 25 to 30 minutes. The recipe didn’t call for an egg wash and the color was pretty good. But if you want to have that deep golden color, you can use egg wash.
Transfer the pies from the oven to serving dishes and garnish with chopped parsley.
Here’s a cross section of a pie. The salmon was moist and flaky and it tastes best when I can get the perfect bite: a little of the mushroom and spinach with salmon and crust. Yum!
Hope San Diegans are keeping dry and warm out there. Have a great hump day!