Sesame-crusted Arctic Char with Warm Spinach Salad with Roasted Squash and Mushrooms
It seemed that half of my appointments last week were cancelled due to sickness so I thought it was a good time to boost the immune system with a nutritional powerhouse meal. Char is very similar to salmon in consistency and is high in beneficial Omega 3 and essential fatty acids. I served this on a spinach salad warmed by roasted squash and mushrooms, fresh from the oven. The dressing has a little sweetness, added by pomegranate molasses. This ingredient is an excellent addition to dressings and can be found in Middle Eastern groceries or in a well-stocked grocery store like Whole Foods or Fairway. The spinach wilts just a little with the heat of the Char and the roasted veggies, and makes for a perfect cold-weather salad.
1 pound Arctic Char
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Spinach salad with Roasted Squash and Mushrooms
8 oz of baby spinach
4 oz Oyster Mushrooms (or Cremini), sliced in half
1 small Delicata Squash, cored and cut into 1/2″ half moons
Leaves from 1 sprig of thyme
2 tablespoons of olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon of salt
Few grinds of black pepper
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon pomegranite molasses
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 medium shallot, finely minced (about 3 tablespoons)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Slice Char into four equal pieces. Sprinkle the flesh lightly with salt and pepper. Place sesame seeds on a plate and press the flesh to the seeds to coat and place in a baking sheet.
3. Line another baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss squash in one tablespoon of olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and half the thyme. Place on one side of the baking sheet.
4. Toss the mushrooms in the remaining oil, salt, and thyme and put on the other side of the baking sheet. Grind black pepper over squash and mushrooms. Roast until both are tender, about 10 minutes for the mushrooms. Remove the mushrooms when they are done.
5. Place the Char in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes, until the center of the filets are just firm to touch. Continue roasting the squash for the same amount of time (a total of 20 minutes for the squash or until its soft and a touch brown).
4. While the Char and Squash are roasting, wash and dry the spinach in a spinner.
5. Wisk the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Combine spinach, mushrooms and warm squash together and toss with about 1/8 cup of the dressing, just enough to lightly coat.
6. Top with Char and serve immediately.