Pan-seared Salmon & Mashed Potatoes

I cooked a proper dinner last night. It was a simple dinner, and another one where I didn’t really need recipes, but that’s the best kind of dinner for a weeknight, I think.

The main course was salmon fillet, pan-seared in a little butter and olive oil with lemon slices and capers. This is pretty much my favorite way of cooking salmon fillet. Most of the cooking is done skin-side-down and then finished briefly on the other side. When it was done, I removed it from the pan and deglazed with a mixture of white wine and lemon juice. I spooned the reduced sauce and pan juices over the salmon to serve. This dish could have used more lemon; I was too skimpy with it.

Speaking of salmon, I see that Target has stopped selling farm-raised salmon. I imagine that many of you do not buy your fish at Target — I sure don’t — but I’m also sure that plenty of people do all their grocery shopping there, and salmon is a very popular fish. Farm-raised salmon is highly polluting, dirtying the ocean and the fish alike. Wild-caught is better, but only if done sustainably. Arctic char is a great alternative, but I never see it for sale. The truth is, it’s so confusing what fish we should and should not be eating at any one time. My reaction has been to reduce my consumption of fish altogether and to try to eat as sustainably as I can when I do choose it.

I think mashed potatoes go really well with salmon, so that’s what I made for a side dish. I used these lovely, large Yukon Gold potatoes I found at the market. I mixed the mash with sauteed mushroooms and onions, butter and a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream. It’s hard to go wrong with mashed potatoes.

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