A fish recipe summarized from Ferran Adrià’s beautiful cookbook, The Family Meal. I make it with tuna rather than salmon, but the original says to use salmon. I’ve made this 3 or 4 times now, including for family holidays, and it gets great reviews.
Salmon or Tuna Stewed with Lentils (For 2):
- salmon (or tuna) steaks
- parsey sprigs
- olive oil
- fish stock (1.75 cups)
- canned lentils drained (1.25 cups) or cook your own!
- salt (pinch)
- Sofrito (1 T or to taste) — see below
- Picada (2 tsp, I use more for brain health) — see below
Cook oil and sofrito in pan for 1 minute. Pour in stock, add lentils. Add picada and simmer 10 minutes. Carefully put cubes of raw salmon (or seared tuna) in stock. If they are totally raw, after 1 min, turn them. (If you pre-seared tuna, as I do, this isn’t necessary.) Stir in fresh chopped parsley. Serve.
The “hard” parts are the sofrito and picada, also where the main flavor components lie.
Sofrito is a much reduced tomato sauce with finely cut onion/garlic/olive oil. I approximate for speed by using tomato paste plus a lot of garlic and onion. In some places (like MA), you can buy it in jars. (You can find a full recipe for it from Adria here.)
Picada is not so easily approximable, but can be made and frozen:
For 1/2 cup of picada:
- 1 tsp saffron
- garlic cloves - 1 or to taste (I use 2-3 or more for health/taste)
- parsley leaves, chopped - 2/3 cup
- toasted blanched hazelnuts (or almonds) - 1/4 cup
Very lightly warm the saffon in aluminun foil in a pan for a few seconds. Then mix everything in a small food processor, to get as close to a pesto-y sauce as you can. You can freeze this, or use it right away. (I notice some versions of this recipe call for bread crumbs, but Adria’s does not.)
To increase your heart-brain health value, sear your tuna steaks with sesame seeds before throwing them in the lentils and broth at the end. That’s how I do it!
If you want the original recipe (sans all the gorgeous photos), I found it online. The photo above is served from that recipe.
What Makes This Brain Food?
Omega-3 in fish and nuts, as well as the sesame seeds if you use the seared tuna method. Garlic and parsley are anti-inflammatory. Lentils are full of nutrients like B vitamins, protein and fiber, and also may help your glucose levels, good for mood as well.