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Dinner on the Pacific Rim

Entrée:  White Wine Poached Salmon

Side: Lemon Couscous

Salad:  Chopped Carrot and Cabbage Slaw (with Ranch dressing)

Dessert: Chocolate Ricotta

The wine poached salmon sitting atop the lemon couscous is a visual treat while the subtle flavors tempt your palate.  If you prefer not to use wine, chicken broth makes an acceptable poaching liquid.


Equipment: for on the road:  Fondue pot, makeshift cover for the fondue pot, fork, cutting board and knife, can opener (use a Panini grill with ridged plates if grilling salmon)

Equipment: for at home: 3 quart cooking pot, large skillet with lid

Serves: 2–3

Ingredients:

Lemon Couscous   

1/2 medium lemon (or 1 whole small lemon), zested, squeezed to get 1 1/2–2 Tablespoons juice

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1/2 small (2 inch diameter) onion, chopped (1/3 cup chopped)

1 (4–ounce) can baby peas, drained

1 3/4 cups water

3/4 cup whole-wheat couscous

For the salmon fillets

1/2 lb. fresh salmon fillets (2 large)

1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

Dash black pepper

1 cup white wine (optional)

1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed (optional); or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary

Procedure:

Set aside separately lemon juice and zest.

Put couscous in a small bowl.

In fondue pot or a 3 quart pot, sauté onion in olive oil until tender.  Stir in peas, lemon juice, and water and bring to a boil. Pour onion-lemon water over couscous in small bowl, cover immediately, and let stand for 5–8 minutes.

Add about 1 Tablespoon olive oil to hot fondue pot (or medium skillet with a lid) and 1 cup white wine, place salmon fillets in the wine, skin side down.  Wine should come two-thirds  of the way up the sides of the fillets.  Drizzle tops of fillets with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and dill (if using).  Set fondue pot on very low heat and bring to simmer.  Simmer very gently until fillets are opaque.  Turn off heat.

Uncover and fluff couscous with fork and mound in center of a large plate, or put equal amounts on separate dining plates.  Lift salmon from fondue pot and place on top of couscous on plate, or divide salmon into equal portions and place on couscous mounds on individual plates.  Sprinkle with lemon zest.

Nutrition for couscous per serving: Calories 333, Total Fat 8g (Sat Fat 1g), Chol 0mg, Sodium 117mg, Potassium 131mg, Total Carbs 58g, Fiber 5g, Sugars 2g, Protein 11g

Nutrition for salmon per serving: Calories 525, Total Fat 22g (Sat Fat 4g), Chol 61mg, Sodium 424mg, Potassium 1,527mg, Total Carbs 1g, Fiber 0g, Sugars 0g, Protein 58g

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Make this delicious Greek Dinner in any room that has electricity with one small appliance and eat healthier and save $$$

Appetizer: Roasted Eggplant Spread on Pita

Salad:  Greek Barley Salad

Entrée: Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast

Side:  Roasted or Mashed Potatoes

Dessert:  Pistachio Pudding (Instant)

This easy salad, low in calories (salad + dressing= 249 calories) and loaded with good nutrition, is part of the Greek Dinner menu featured in Meals in Motion: Slash Your Travel Budget with Simple to Gourmet Cooking on the Road

Greek Barley Salad

Equipment:Fondue pot (for cooking barley), fork or whisk, 1 medium bowl for salad, 1 small bowl or cup
Serves:  4
Ingredients
1 1/2 cup cooked pearl barley
1 can (6-7 oz) artichoke hearts, chopped
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives (4 1/2 -5 oz can)
1/2 cup (2 oz) crumbled feta cheese 1/4C finely chopped red onion
1/4 cup chopped parsley
If you don't have cooked barley already on hand, plan to make the salad one day later. 
Soak 1 cup of pearl barley in cold water (6-10 hours).  Drain and follow cooking instructions.

Remember 1 cup uncooked pearl barley yields about 3-3 1/2 cups cooked.

To soak barley: I put the barley in a Ziploc bag in cold water early in the morning and pack it in my cooler, letting it soak all day as we drive toward our destination. If we are staying in one place for several days, I soak the barley overnight, cook it the next day, use part of the hot barley immediately as a substitute for rice in a meal, and cool the remaining barley for making this salad.  Cooked barley will keep refrigerated for about 1 week.

To cook pearl barley:  In fondue pot, bring 3 cups water to a boil.  Add 1 cup pearl barley; return to boil.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 45 minutes or until barley is tender and liquid is absorbed.  If you cooked 1 cup of soaked barley you will have about 1 1/2 -2 cups of cooked barley for another use after making the salad. 

To assemble salad: Mix all salad ingredients in a medium bowl, drizzle with dressing. 

Dressing for Greek Barley Salad

Equipment: Bowl, whisk or fork 
Yield:  about 12 Tablespoons (3/4 cup); extra used for marinating chicken
Ingredients
1 Tablespoon grated lemon peel
1/2 cup (8 Tablespoons) fresh lemon juice (about 2 large lemons)
1/3 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon Dijon style mustard (1-2 packets mustard)
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt (1 packet salt)
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper (1-2 packets pepper)

Grate the lemons before juicing them.  Combine all ingredients in bowl and whisk.  Use about 4 Tablespoons for dressing the salad or about 1 Tablespoon per individual serving.

Variations on a Theme: 
 
Substitute an equal amount of arborio rice or Kasha for the pearl barley.

Substitute cooked vegetables such as finely chopped leeks (or other variety of onion) and fennel sprinkled with finely chopped fresh thyme.

These and other variations can be found in Meals in Motion.

Visit Contact Me to share your recipe variations, ask questions, or contribute comments.
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