Salmon Hand Rolls with Spicy Kimchi and Kumquats

My baby slept well last night, so naturally, I was awake and thinking about breakfast while it was still dark outside. It reminded me of the early days, when he was a newborn and the birds would sing in the spring around 4 or 5 in the morning and I would think, I made it through another night, and I would be so excited for the sun to come up. The birds brought the dawn and the sun followed and made me feel awake and capable, and as the sun went down, I thought about the birds and how their song would comfort me and remind me the sun was coming.

Now, my baby sleeps (usually), but I still wake up sometimes in these dark pre-dawn moments and it’s winter so the birds aren’t singing yet, but thoughts about my morning coffee and what to make for breakfast today provide me with the same comfort and same excitement when the sun comes up and the day officially begins.

When the sun came up today, I made these salmon hand rolls. If you can find kumquats and a good quality, spicy kimchi, they add the requisite sweet, spicy, and sour these hand rolls depend on for tastiness beyond the ordinary. I thoroughly enjoyed eating these for breakfast, as did my little man who appears to especially enjoy the feeling, sensation and surprise of salmon roe in his mouth.

Salmon Hand Rolls with Kimchi and Kumquats

Several sheets of Nori, cut in half
1 filet of salmon (6 oz.)
1 meyer lemon
5 kumquats, thinly sliced
Kimchi, thinly sliced
1 avocado, thinly sliced
1 handful of arugula
Greek yogurt
Salmon Roe
Togarashi
Ghee
Sea salt

Method:

  1. Mise en place! Prepare your ingredients so you can get rolling. Your station will include: cooked salmon, sliced kimchi, avocado, Greek yogurt, salmon roe, togarashi and arugula.
  2. Heat a cast iron to medium and add a spoonful of ghee. Season the filet of salmon with salt and a generous squeeze of lemon and cook for a few minutes on each side. Medium-low and slow works well for salmon and I always turn the heat off before it’s done so it doesn’t dry out and overcook.
  3. During the last few minutes of cooking, throw the sliced kumquats into the cast iron and cook until the salmon is finished.
  4. With two forks, gently flake the fish apart in the pan, mixing in the juices and kumquats.
  5. Lay out the nori sheet horizontally and place the fillings on the left mid-upper quadrant. Carefully tuck the outer edge under the ingredients and roll into a cone. I am not an expert hand roller and a quick google search about how to roll one is better than any text instructions I can offer.
  6. Eat the hand roll right away. Alternatively, set out all of the ingredients and let people roll their own and serve with a side salad of arugula dressed simply with olive oil and more sliced kumquats.

Sourcing: My wild salmon filet and roe came from Loki Fish Co., meyer lemon and kumquats from the food coop, arugula from my garden, Greek yogurt from Straus, kimchi from Mother in Laws, and togarashi from Healdsburg Shed.

Salmon Tacos with Fruit Salsa and Queso Fresco

Fish tacos are one of my favorite foods of all time. They are so easy, satisfying and fresh-the perfect dish to start summer with. The fruit salsa offsets the savory salmon and the spicy jalapeno is balanced by queso fresco. When I’m in Reno I get my salmon from the coop. It’s some of the best fish around and they don’t take the skin off. The skin is one of the best parts and it’s rich in all the best oils-omega 3s, Vitamins A & C, calcium and iron and all the other important nutrients that aren’t covered by nutritional science- don’t waste it!

Salmon Tacos with Fruit Salsa and Queso Fresco

Corn tortillas
Salmon filet
Queso Fresco
Salt & pepper
Lemon juice
Olive oil

Fruit Salsa
Avocado
Green onions, sliced
Oranges, diced
Jalapeno, about a tbsp, minced
Lemon juice
salt & pepper
cilantro

Method:

Mix the salsa ingredients together, you can add other fruits you have on hand, or shallots, whatever you want.

Season both sides of the salmon with salt, pepper and lemon juice. Add oil to your skillet and cook on medium high-heat, for just a few minutes on both sides. Make sure you don’t overcook the fish, or it will be dry and flavorless.

Heat the tortillas on the skillet until they are a little bit crispy. Spread the salmon and salsa on the tortillas and top with queso fresco. You can also add a bit of plain whole milk yogurt or creme fraiche if the salsa is too spicy.

Bacon Wrapped Wild Salmon with Bok Choy, Purple Potatoes & Turnips

Bacon Wrapped Salmon with Root Vegetables

1 turnip
1 sweet potato
3 purple potatoes
bok choy
wild salmon
3 slices bacon (I use Niman Ranch)
olive oil
salt & pepper

Method:

Oven 425. Chop the root vegetables into pretty uniform squares. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt & pepper. Roast until tender, about 20 minutes.

Add the bok choy to the root vegetable pan (I use my cast iron) and roast until softened, around three minutes. Set the bok choy aside.

Set the oven to broil. Season the salmon with salt & pepper. Wrap the salmon in three pieces of bacon.  Push the root vegetables to one side of the cast iron, and set the salmon in the pan. Broil for 3-5 minutes on one side, until the bacon is crisp and the veggies brown and roast in some of the bacon’s drippings.

Remove the veggies from the pan, then flip the salmon and broil the other side for 3-5 minutes. Once you remove the cast iron from the oven, put the root veggies and bok choy back in the pan so they heat up. You need very little oil and seasoning if you use the bacon’s drippings to cook the veggies, salmon and bok choy. Enjoy!
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