Hearty Salmon & Kale Salad

Back from the holidays but already feeling the mid-winter slump? Consumed too many gluttonous calories and are hoping to get back into a healthy bod, while surviving these cold chills? 

Typically, during the dry colder days, I'm not really a meat & potatoes type of person (I dated a Brit who was huge on bangers & mash and that caused a roll in my tummy). However, admittedly, I can be a huge refined-carb consumer (holla croissants and cookies!) but knowing that these won't keep me lasting much for a couple hours, I've compiled this recipe of my fave hearty lunch/dinner meal, perfect for days where the temperatures surface below -10 degrees Celsius.

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Hearty Salmon & Kale Salad

I love visiting the St. Lawrence Market for their fresh and organic supply of seasonal produce, berries, cheeses & selection of hor d'oeuvres, not to mention fresh dips like hummus, taramosalata, and pestos. I also love browsing the fish mongerers for any discounts - and low and behold for boxing week, these fresh and wild Pacific salmon tails were on sale for $12.99 a pound. (Typically, you'd find 2 frozen farm-raised salmon fillets weighing under a lb. for about $8.99 at most discount grocery supermarkets) so this was a great find.
I also picked up some green dinosaur kale (super crunchy and full of much more nutrients then the curly kale variant), fresh cremini mushrooms (also super meaty in texture), and some mixed rice from the bulk foods store nearby. 

Wild Pacific Salmon tails - keep the skin on to retain the benefits of the Omega-3 fatty acids.

Wild Pacific Salmon tails - keep the skin on to retain the benefits of the Omega-3 fatty acids.

Salmon is high in healthy fats - Omega-3's that are stored mainly in the fat and skin so keep the SKIN ON, and contains Vitamins B and D, and minerals, niacin and phosphorus. 

Dinosaur Kale - a dark green variant with crispy texture that holds while under high heat.

Dinosaur Kale - a dark green variant with crispy texture that holds while under high heat.

Dinosaur Kale has great fibre content, along with providing Vitamins K, A, and C, along with many other minerals such as copper and maganese. Massage the kale leafs at the stem after rinsing to reduce the bitterness in the leaves.

 

Mixed Aztec rice blend found at local bulk food store.

Mixed Aztec rice blend found at local bulk food store.

This mixed rice blend contains both yellow and green split peas, amaranth, long grain rice, and brown rice which is also high in fibre, tastes nutty in texture, and keeps your fuller for longer. 

The combination of these foods high in protein, fibre, and Vitamins C and B12 help support our immune system in the cold, and prevent inflammation in our joints, and keep us full of sustainable energy, as they won't spike our blood sugar levels quickly. 

Here's the recipe to get you started:

Ingredients:

1 salmon tail  (typically half a pound)
3 leaves of green monster kale, roughly chopped
3-4 cremini mushrooms (washed and thinly sliced)
1/2 tomato

2 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 onion
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup of mixed rice
1/4 cup edamame (optional)

1 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. cumin
1 tbsp. of grainy dijon mustard
t tbsp. of miso paste
1/2 of an orange
2 tbsp. of olive oil or coconut oil 

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1. Boil down 1/2 cup of rice with double the volume of water (1 cup). Bring to a boil on high, then simmer for about 15-20 minutes until all liquid is absorbed. Add edamame when 3/4 of the liquid is all absorbed. 

2. Baste salmon, skin side down with 1 tbsp. of oil (either olive or coconut), spread 1 tbsp. of miso paste evenly on the fleshy side, sprinkle 1 tsp. of ginger and 1 tsp.
of cumin evenly ontop. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes

3. Prepare the veggies - 1 tbsp. of oil goes in a frying pan at medium heat, soften onions with garlic for a few minutes, then add in mushroom slices and cook down until brown (3-5 minutes). Add Worcestershire sauce to deglaze the pan. Turn heat off and stir in kale in hot pan to soften for a few minutes. Squeeze orange juice onto the kale and mushrooms and continue to stir to prevent sticking in the pan. 

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Once the the salmon is ready, plate with side of rice, assemble diced tomatoes, and kale and mushroom stirfry. 

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Like this combo? You can always substitute salmon for rainbow trout - always seeking wild over farm-raised options. Mix up your favourite leafy variants such as collard greens, red cabbage, swiss chard or spinach. You can also sub out mixed quinoa for your choice of grains for additional protein and carbohydrate intake!

 

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