Friday, March 23, 2007

Poaching Salmon

Friday night is fish night at our house. Lately I have been having salmon while my wife has tilapia. She prefers the milder taste of the tilapia. I usually grill or broil my salmon but tonight I decided to poach it instead. Poaching fish usually is done in a small sauce pan in a liquid frequently consisting of half water and half white wine, or any of a number of other combinations. Poaching results in a mild flavor for the fish (as some of the natural flavor leaches out) and the poaching liquid helps to replace some of the lost flavor. Fish prepared this way is frequently served with or in a fairly aromatic sauce (often a cream sauce) or with a raw salsa or relish.

How to Poach

As I have didn’t have any wine in the house, I thought I would try a water broth with a few seasonings. (I don’t drink and we live in a dry county-I wasn’t about to drive to buy the real thing and I also wasn’t about to use a sodium-filled cooking wine) I filled a small sauce pan with enough water to submerge the salmon and added the juice of ¼ lemon, ¼ t. cinnamon, ¼ t. cumin, and 1 T white wine vinegar. I brought the poaching liquid up to a simmer and reduced the heat to just below a simmer. I slipped a small salmon filet in the liquid and covered the sauce pan. I had to keep adjusting the temperature to just below a simmer so the water was moving, but not bubbling. About ten minutes later the filet was done and I tasted it. It was indeed mild with a pleasantly aromatic Middle Eastern flavor.

I could have eaten it without much more than a squeeze of lemon juice, but I felt I needed a more substantial meal (and I had the calories to spare). So I heated three corn tortillas about 30 seconds per side in a dry skillet and folded them with salmon, mozzarella cheese, and shredded cabbage. All they needed then was a squeeze of lemon juice. I was surprised to find that the fragrance and taste of the cinnamon came through in one bite and of the cumin in another. It was very delicate and quite satisfying. Corn and Brussels sprouts completed this very satisfying meal.

The whole meal with 2/3 cup of corn, 9 Brussels sprouts (I am quite fond of them), three corn tortillas, a couple tablespoons of shredded cabbage, and 1 tablespoon of mozzarella cheese, only had 387.5 calories, 57.8 g carbohydrates, 5.77 g fat, and 179 mg sodium.

The Big Three 0

I almost forgot that I went to the fitness center today and weighed in. My cumulative weight loss since January 3, 2007 is 30.25 pounds. That is an average loss of .37 pounds per day. My blood pressure was a respectable 105/74. I feel like I am winning and eating well at the same time.

Here is my recap for yesterday and Wednesday. (I left my thumb drive with my spreadsheet on it at school yesterday.)

Daily Dietary Recap-3/21/2007
Calories Protein Carbohydrates SodiumFat % Calories from Fat
1105.42 63.14 g 164.83 g950.53 mg 14.05 g 10.22%

Daily Dietary Recap-3/22/2007
Calories Protein Carbohydrates SodiumFat % Calories from Fat
1114.3 61.87 g 188.71 g675.37 mg 10.83 g 8.73%

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