Attempted Meal – Baked Dijon Salmon

Occasionally I pretend to be a grown up and make a grown up dinner.  This was one of those times.

I went out and picked up some salmon today, I still don’t really know why.  Actually, I was sitting at home after lunch thinking “Come on, you’re old, you should be able to make something other than just boring plain stuff.  Go out and pick up something delicious for dinner.”  Checking the kitchen stock and then looking at the list of things I didn’t have, I made a note of what was needed and headed out.  I’ll list what’s required and bold what I still required at the time of purchase:

  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of honey
  • 1/4 cup of dried bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of finely chopped pecans
  • 4 teaspoons of fresh chopped parsley
  • 4 (4 ounce) salmon fillets
  • salt and pepper for taste
  • lemon goodness for deliciousness

With the list created, if was off to Lococo’s to obtain those mysterious ingredients….bread…crumbs?  Fresh chopped parsley? What are these ridiculous foods?  Being too lazy to pick up the iPhone that is ALWAYS with me and work out the conversion of grams to ounces, I grabbed $16 worth of fish, a couple bucks worth of bread crumbs and parsley, and pecans….pecans….where are the pecans?  I asked the lovely lady behind the counter where I might find these nuts, and unfortunately they were not to be found in the store.  She tried to nicely explain to me where I could find some:

“If you go over the hill to the Big V…”

…and that’s where I officially tuned out.  I believe the conversation in my head was “FUCK it.  I’ll just use almonds instead.”  Lazy wins over “correct” 9 times out of 8.  Or something like that.

By the way, almonds?  Not even close to pecans.  Not REMOTELY.  Even WALNUTS may have been closer.  Like I said, sometimes I pretend I’m a grown up.  This was not one of those times.

After returning home to the kitchen I gathered my supplies and got to work.  The bread crumbs, “pecans” and parsley go together, while the butter, honey and mustard mixed together as well.  The liquids would get spread on the fish, the dry mix then sprinkled on top for the crust.  Bake it at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until the fish got flaky.  Can that get any easier?  We’re about to find out.

First off, it took me about 3 seconds to realize why pecans were a better idea than almonds…if these things are going to make a crust, they’ve gotta be pretty finely chopped.  I don’t want big crunchy pieces of nut sitting on my fish.  Pecans = Easy to chop.  Almonds?

Fuck.

About 10 minutes later I had worked the almonds into a fine and yet still quite chunky mix, one that I decided to try to push through a sieve to work the big chunks out.  Do that, pull out the big chunks, chop some more, pour them through the sieve, lather rinse repeat.  I got most of it taken care of, but do distinctly remember another “fuck it, that’s good enough” moment where I tossed the last tablespoon of almond chunk down my throat.  See?  I still ate it, just 30 minutes earlier than anticipated.  (Pecans, next time get pecans.)

The parsley wasn’t nearly as bad, but still, when they say finely chop, they probably don’t mean “until a fine paste of parsley spread can be pushed across the chopping board.”  And 4 teaspoons?  How much to I need to do that?  I grabbed what I thought was plenty, I got 2 teaspoons worth.  I grabbed the exact same amount, thinking that’d make another 2…and somehow ended up with about 6.  Ugh.  Now I’ve got a small bowl of unused parsley just mocking me.

So with THAT out of the way, in goes the parsley, almond dust/paste and breadcrumbs into a bowl, waiting to be applied to crust duty.  The liquids had to wait to be put together, because you’ve got to soften the butten before you put the honey and mustard in with it.  That means I was pretty much wrapped up, I just had to get the fish ready to go.  And how much did I need?  Right, four 4-ounce fillets…how much did I pick up again?

Hmmm…that seems like a little bit much…let’s do the conversion…ok, .882kgs is….31.11163oz…

Oh, I have almost exactly TWICE as much as I need.  That’s what freezers are for right?  To mock you for not looking it up BEFORE you bought it, right?  For RUINING the concept of FRESH fish by FREEZING HALF of it to use for later, RIGHT?!?

So from here it’s pretty simple, brush the liquid on top, add the crusty goodness, in it goes at 400 degrees, we’ll see you in 12 to 15. And in spite of the fact that it ended up with extra crust stuff, extra parsley and extra topping goodness, here’s how it turned out:

Salmon with roasted red potatoes and green beans…and the first comment from the Sig-O? “It’s AMAZING!”  Looks like we’ve got a winner, and for a brief moment, I’m actually a grown up.  But I’ll still ask to eat a container of frosting for dessert.

*Update – As put in the comments, thoroughly check the cupboards before heading out.  Shakes fist.*

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  One thought on “Attempted Meal – Baked Dijon Salmon

  1. Ash
    January 17, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    It was a delicious meal, no doubt. The unfortunate thing is all the trouble you went through with the, as you put it, fucking pecans. Next time just check the cupboard.

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