Nearly everyone knows that salmon is good food. High in omega-3, heart-friendly acids, protein and antioxidants, is it among the world’s healthiest fish products. It is, however, also one of the most confusing purchases ever to be made.
Not all salmon is created equally, at least not since humanity developed a proclivity to mass produce food in the same manner as cheap toys in cereal boxes. This is good for neither man nor salmon. Since the discovery and promotion of salmon’s many health benefits, consumer demand has skyrocketed and consequently depleted the supply of the finest salmon, the wild-caught. Salmon living as nature intended, on their own, catching their own wild-caught suppers, are significantly less inclined to carry pollution in their flesh than those raised in penned farms. Farm-raised salmon, now predominant on the market, are routinely fed a diet high in dioxin and PCBs, toxins of particular risk to women of child-bearing years, although no one is exempt from the health implications.
All this can be pretty disheartening and worrisome to the health-conscious consumer, but if we are willing to take note of a number of savvy pointers, there is no reason why we can’t have our salmon and eat it, too.
Pasta with Smoked Salmon - Adapted from About.com
1/2 pound angel hair or other thin, long pasta
1/4 pound smoked salmon, cut into short, thin strips (I purchased wild-caught at Whole Foods.)
1 large shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon butter*
1 tablespoon white wine
½ cup half and half*
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or dried parsley
Bring large pot of water to boil. In a large skillet, sauté chopped shallot in butter over low heat until translucent and tender. Add pasta to boiling water pot. While pasta is cooking to your desired tenderness, add salmon strips to the skillet, heating on continued low heat until salmon becomes pale. Add white wine and cook for ½ minute. Add half and half, stirring to heat through. Remove from heat.
Drain pasta and divide onto two plates, spooning sauce over pasta. Scatter lightly with parsley and black pepper.* You can virtually cut out all saturated fat by substituting olive oil for the butter, and non-fat half and half for the richer version.
Serves 2 --
This post is being submitted to Ruth of Once Upon a Feast, the creator of the weekly food blogging event, Presto Pasta Nights. Ruth posts a round-up of recipes from all over the world every Friday.