Today’s recipe was chosen by Little Chef C, Coriander and Mustard Seed Crusted Salmon from
Chef Robert Irvine. We watched an episode of his show, Restaurant Impossible, where he was making over a school restaurant. I think because he was working with High School student chefs my Little Chefs were OVERLY excited and enthrawled. Since viewing this episode every time I ask Little Chef D to do something she responds “Yes, Chef!” Its not a quiet response, because Chef Robert explained to the kids when he asks you to do something you need to respond like this, as he yelled “Yes, Chef!” Little Chef D repeats over and over in louder and louder tones with more and more conviction, “Yes, Chef! Yes, Chef! Yes, Chef!” It makes me laugh, but at the same time I know I will get in trouble REALLY soon. Currently she only does this at home. One day very soon I KNOW she will do it in public somewhere where others don’t know the back story and give me some pretty funny looks. Oh well, that is the joy of being a parent!
I do have to note at the beginning of this recipe we had a hard time finding the right ingredients. Some adaptations were made as will be explained.
First, the ingredients were gathered. We did not use all fresh herbs. I have a hope that we will start our own herb garden here at home. I don’t think it will be hard, but I am having a hard time buying fresh herbs and only using a very small portion.
The first thing Little Chef C did was make the sauce. I have purchased a pair of kitchen scissors to cut herbs with. She cut the mint using this method and it worked so much better then a knife. The pieces were still not as small as the recipe called for and were not uniform in size, but it was a success because she was able to do it herself! She did the same with the watercress.
Next, Little Chef C measured out the yogurt, sour cream, vinegar and garlic and added them to the bowl. She wisked everything together, covered it with plastic and placed it in the refrigerator. The recipe does say it can stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, but it does take a long time to cook in my kitchen now days! I did not think the rest of the recipe would be completed in that time period.
Next was the crust. Here is where we had ingredient problems. We could locate mustard and coriander seeds, however we do not have a mortar and pestle. That seemed like the likely way to crush the seeds as directed. We tried crushing them with spoons and other methods to no avail. In the end Little Chef C added a little mustard powder and coriander powder instead. The parsley was cut with scissors, the same method as the mint. When recipes such as this says “season with salt and pepper” it is very hard to explain to a Little Chef how much that exactly is. When you begin to learn to cook everything is about measurements, then to have directions with no measurements, what a contradiction!
Now it was time for Little Chef C to cook the salmon. The wash was easy to make. Mustard and water were wisked together. The salmon was covered in the wash, then one side was pressed into the crust mixture. Our fish did not have skin. Little Chef C loves the hands on work, but is always eager to be done and wash her hands after the first one was completed. I had to remind her its ok to get your hands dirty, they can be washed in a minute!
Obviously the pan was a little crowed. Next time we will talk about that and do the fish, or whatever she will be cooking next in either a larger pan, or cook in two batches. I explained how to put the fish in close to you first then gently lay down the part farther away from you so the oil splashed away from you.
The trickiest part was flipping the fish. Since the pan was crowded Little Chef C needed some assistance. To be honest, yes some pieces of fish fell apart. It would have been thrown out in a professional kitchen, but it was good in our books. The salmon was completed and now for the best part, plating! All my Little Chefs love to plate their food and show off their accomplishment!
Coriander and Mustard Seed Crusted Salmon
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon crushed mustard seeds
- 2 teaspoons cracked coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup fresh watercress, minced
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh mint
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- Six 6 to 7-ounce salmon fillets, with skin
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- Fresh herbs, for garnish, optional
For the wash: In a second bowl, blend the mustard with 1/2 cup water, whisking well to blend.
For the sauce: Whisk the yogurt, sour cream, watercress, vinegar, mint and garlic in a bowl. To ensure the spices are blended, scrape the sides and whisk a second time. Hold at room temperature if using within 30 minutes, or refrigerate for future usage.
For the salmon: Coat the salmon with the wash, and then finish the top side (skin side) with the crust. Repeat the process with each fillet.
In medium saute pan over medium heat, coat the bottom of the pan with the oil. When warmed, add the crusted side of the salmon to the pan and cook, in batches, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the fish and finish cooking until desired temperature. Remove from the pan.
Finally, sauce the plates with 2 ounces of the watercress/mint sauce. Top with the salmon and fresh herbs if desired.