Sunday, September 4, 2011

Slammin' Grilled Salmon

If there is one food that I think everyone should eat more of... it's fish.  Fish is a lean protein, low in calories and is a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin D, and B vitamins.  Salmon is one of my favorites because it has such a nice flavor and most tend to like it. Omega 3's have been shown to lower inflammation, reduce risk for heart disease, and may help improve cognitive function!

My family was in love with this meal and I know that it was super healthy for them!  This salmon is marinated in a maple, ginger, and soy sauce glaze and has a sweet, yet spicy flavor.  By switching the starch and the vegetables it is the perfect feature for an asian inspired meal, but versatile enough to be served with sweet potatoes or pasta.  I have used and changed this recipe several times, but this is the first time I am grilling it.  I have always baked it, but the grill really brought out some nice flavors and was much prettier on the plate!  The downside: Most of the maple drips off the salmon so it wasn't as sweet as when I bake it in the oven.  I served the salmon with couscous, steamed broccoli, and a mesculin salad.  It was so tasty and satisfied all my cravings!

Tips for buying fish:  If it has the head... look for bright, clear eyes.  Chose fish that has shiny skin and doesn't smell too fishy (it should have very little smell).  You can also buy it frozen, in perfect sized portions!  Many may think that fish is difficult to cook, but the truth is there are few meats that are easier to cook than fish.  On average baked fish only takes about 20 minutes to cook, and clean-up is a breeze when you cook it in tinfoil.  Another benefit of baking over sauteing... it really cuts down on the fishy smell.  If you are concerned with the sustainability of seafood check out this website: http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/cr/cr_seafoodwatch/sfw_recommendations.aspx?c=ln. 
Maple-Soy Grilled Salmon
Serves 4

1 pound of cleaned salmon, cut into 4 pieces
2 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp minced ginger
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Directions:  Combine all ingredients and allow to marinate for 10-15 minutes.  Preheat the grill and use a paper towel and tongs to spread 1 Tbsp olive oil on the rack.  Lower the heat to medium-hight and place the salmon on the grill, scale side down first.  Grill for 4-5 minutes on one side and flip.  Cook for an additional 5 minutes on the other side so that it is firm to the touch.  

Nutrition Facts: 4 oz of salmon, 1/2 cup of couscous, 1 cup broccoli, and side salad with 2 Tbsp light dressing

~350 calories, 38 g carbohydrates, 9 g fat, 29 g protein, 6 g fiber, 560 mg sodium

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