Happy 2015, everyone! Hard to believe that the holidays are already behind us, isn’t it? I’m sure I say this every year, but they seem to have flown by especially fast this time around. Now that we’re back-to-business, it seems especially obvious that while December is the most wonderful time of the year, January is the worst. It’s cold, the holiday hangover is still fresh, the decorations are gone, and the credit card statements are even scarier than we expected. In short, there isn’t anything to look forward to.
Which brings me to my first recipe of 2015.
My Salmon Wellington with dijon greek yogurt is a stunner… and is such a crowd pleaser, it’ll brighten up even the gloomiest of early January days. Perfect for a dinner party, date-night, or visit from the in-laws, this lightened-up take on beef wellington is a surprisingly easy (but still impressive) dinner.
Now, let’s be clear here: this dinner is lighter, not light. The most recognizable part of a wellington-style dish is puff pastry and, well, there really is no way to make that low-cal. But (and this is a big but), my recipe clocks in at about half the calories and fat of traditional beef wellington, which is nothing to sneeze at.
- 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large leek, sliced
- 1 1/2 Tbsp marjoram (if you don't have it, oregano will do the trick)
- 1/2 cup chicken stock (vegetable stock works, too)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 pound skinless salmon fillet
- 2 sheets puff pastry (either store bought or homemade)**
- 2 Tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1/2 cup greek yogurt
- 1 1/2 Tbsp dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Squeeze of lemon (optional)
- **I've done it both ways, and unless you really want to be able to say that you made everything from scratch, I highly recommend using store bought puff pastry. It'll save you a ton of time, it's just as good as anything you're going to make at home, and it's actually probably the cheaper option.
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Add leeks and marjoram, and cook for 8-10 minutes, until leeks are soft and fragrant.
- Add chicken stock, bring to a simmer, and let cool to room temperature. Add salt & pepper.
- Preheat oven to 350F/175C.
- Roll out one pastry sheet (lightly flour your counter so it doesn't stick), and move to a parchment-lined baking sheet (if you don't do this now, you're going to have a hell of a time moving the finished project onto your baking sheet, trust me).
- Brush the pastry with 1 Tbsp dijon mustard (leaving about a 1/2 inch perimeter).
- Spoon leek mixture onto pastry and spread evenly (leaving the same 1/2 inch perimeter).
- Place salmon on top of leeks.
- Roll out second piece of pastry, and coat with the remaining 1 Tbsp dijon mustard.
- Place second piece of pastry (mustard side down) on top of fish.
- Using a pastry brush, brush egg wash over the edges of your pastry (this makes them a bit more sticky and able to seal well).
- Use whatever pinch-and-crimp technique you like to seal the two sheets of pastry together at the perimeter of the wellington. You can really use your own preference here, but I simply pinched the edges together, folded them up, and used a simple thumbprint pattern to crimp (like a pie crust!).*
- Brush the entire thing with egg wash.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, until pastry is golden and browning on the top.
- Let sit for 10 minutes before you cut into it; serve with dijon greek yogurt and a simple green salad.
- Mix all ingredients together in a medium bowl,. Serve immediately, or store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week.
- *I like to cut a little design into the pastry before I bake it! It kills two birds with one stone by allowing steam to escape (so that the pastry doesn't puff up too too high in the oven), and it looks cute. Use a sharp, unserrated knife to cut whatever design you like into the top of your pastry, being careful not to cut all the way through. A few simple lines or a crosshatch pattern are great for a french country vibe, or you can fancy it up with more creative designs. For a dinner party I hosted a few years back, I made individual salmon wellingtons, and I cut each guests monogram into their dish! It's a fun and easy way to make the meal even more special.