Coriander-Crusted Salmon and Berbere Roasted Squash with Pepitas and Shallots

I had every intention of taking Liam to the park today and playing outside. Buuuut then nature stepped in with ice/sleet/snow rain and it was freezing out! He also seems to be getting over a cold, so my plans were thrown out the window. : ) Due to these reasons, I never made it to the grocery store and had to "forage" in my kitchen for inspiration and sustenance. 

I try to keep salmon fillets frozen in my freezer as they're healthy, easy to defrost, and super tasty! I also had squash on hand (I almost always do) along with pantry essentials such as a shallot. (If you're not a shallot-keeper, feel free to use an onion.)

  • 1 Delicata (or other squash) cut into quarters
  • 1 shallot cut into thin strips
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp coconut aminos  
  • 1 tbsp Berbere spice blend
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 salmon fillets
  • salt and pepper  
  • fresh ground coriander  

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Toss the sliced squash, the shallots, the coconut oil, and the coconut aminos (or soy sauce if you have that instead)  together in an oven-safe pan. 

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Sprinkle the Berbere all over the squash mixture and mix it in. If you like it spicy, feel free to add more. It can be on the hotter side, depending on the brand. I personally like the Frontier brand, but I'm sure they're all good. (If you cannot find Berbere, use a different African or Middle Eastern spice blend. Many should contain coriander and pair well with squash and salmon. Experiment!)

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Make sure all of the squash pieces are coated in the olive oil and spice mixture and that the pumpkin seeds are not falling to the bottom of the pan. (If they are, just scoop them up and place some on top.) Set a timer for 20 minutes and place the pan in the oven. 

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Season the salmon with salt and the freshly ground coriander. When the timer has 10 minutes left, add the olive oil to a sauté pan over medium high heat. Place the salmon in the pan skin side up. You always want the side you will serve to be cooked first. 

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When the salmon releases from the pan easily, flip it. One piece might be ready before the other - that's okay. Don't try and pull them up before they're ready though or you may rip off some flaky deliciousness. 

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Once both pieces are face up, place the pan in the oven with the squash. There should be about 5 minutes left on the timer. Once the timer goes off, pull both pans from the oven and check for doneness. As the squash roasts it becomes sweet and soft, making it the perfect companion for the smoky, spicy Berbere. This dish would go really well with a nice crisp Sauvignon Blanc or dry Riesling. Avoid a red with any spice to it as the dish and the wine will be fighting and both will taste off. Let me know if you make and alterations - you could easily switch the squash or the fish here and it would still be great. Bon Apetit! 

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