Friday, September 20, 2013

Spicy Salmon and Cucumber "Noodle" Salad from Diana Rodgers

I got home late from work and errands one evening and decided that it was a good time to try this dish from Diana Rodgers' new book, Paleo Lunches and Breakfasts on the Go.  Yes, the book says lunches and breakfasts, but I really don't categorize my food by meal anymore.  I will say that when I started eating a paleo template, my biggest problem was breakfast.  If you're just starting out and breakfast perplexes you, perhaps this is the book for you.  Any recipe is fair game for any meal for me.  

When reading the instructions, the name of the recipe says salmon, the description of the recipe talks about salmon, but the ingredient list and recipe instructions talk about tuna.  I emailed Diana and she said it was a typo and that it should be salmon.   I think she was embarrassed, but typos happen to everyone and I'm quite sure my blog is rife with them.  If I treated this blog like a work document, I'd probably have a mental breakdown.  Back to the kitchen! 

I gathered my ingredients, which were few and started by mincing mint.  

Next, I got my trusty spiral slicer out to make some "noodles."  If you've been skeptical about getting a spiral slicer, check out my review of this one.  I've enjoyed the new textures it has brought to my kitchen.  If you don't have a spiral slicer, just use a julienne peeler.   

Next, I drained my salmon in the sink and added some pepper flakes.

I used tongs to mix everything up.  

Ooooo noodles!

Here's my plate. 

Make sure to squeeze some lemon juice on the salad!

Accessibility & Cost of Ingredients: You should be able to find everything you need at your "big box" grocery store.  I need to grow some  mint.  The small package of mint I bought was $2.50.  The recipe calls for English cucumber.  I'm guessing because it has fewer seeds and won't have as much moisture as a regular cucumber.  If you're planning on eating this immediately and you are using a spiral slicer, a regular cucumber would likely work out just fine.  One of the beauties of the spiral slicer is that it takes out the seed core of cucumbers as you slice.  Don't let the lack of an English cucumber stop you from making this recipe.  If you are using a julienne peeler, an English cucumber will be easier to handle in my opinion.  

Preparation Time:  It tool me a a total of 15 minutes to prepare this dish to eat. 

Clean Up:  Even though the spiral slicer is hand wash only, that was pretty much the clean up for this recipe.  

The Paleo Review:  Thumbs Up! This salad had a very Vietnamese flavor to me.  It was refreshing and light.  Yum.  On a hot Texas evening, having a cool salad for dinner that didn't require me to turn on the stove or oven was very very nice.   I  used water packed salmon and it seemed a little dry.  I'll try oil packed next time.  

The recipe serves one and initially because the spiral slicer creates an incredible volume of noodles from one cucumber, you might think you can't eat the entire thing in one sitting.  Yes, yes you can.  I had to use a lot of control not to eat the entire salad in one sitting.  The only reason I didn't was that I wanted to test it out over night.  After an evening in the refrigerator, I had the remaining salad for breakfast.  It was a little soggy for my taste, so I'd recommend eating this salad as soon as possible after assembling.  I think it would likely hold up if you assembled it in the morning and had it for lunch, just not overnight.   

If you are following Autoimmune Paleo protocol, just don't add the red chili flakes and substitute some plain black pepper to taste.  

When I emailed Diana about the Salmon-Tuna question, she mentioned that she had made it with tuna as well.  I think that's a great idea.  

Are you hungry?  Short on time?  Like good food?  Give this dish a try.  

I've not seen where Diana has posted this recipe online, so you'll have to get the book to enjoy it.