Disclaimer: By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by USA Rice Federation and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.
All the seafood. GIMME GIMME GIMME.
Any time I spend time by a coast I come back to Houston and want nothing but seafood. Scallops and salmon specifically.
I’ve said before that I don’t understand when people say something is too rich. Like when someone is moaning that a chocolate cake is too rich…I’m like what does that even mean? Life has taught me that if a cake is too rich, all you need is an ice cold glass of milk and problem solved. Chocolate cake being too rich is a “problem” I welcome with open arms.
But let me be a hypocrite for a hot sec.
Sometimes when I’m eating scallops I think they’re just too rich. And I know what I just said about not getting the too rich thing, but scallops are just that…too rich. Those are my thoughts. I still like scallops…just in small quantities.
As I’m typing this up the Cooking Channel is on and they’re talking about all things cheese. I have it muted, but it’s that “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” show. Right now they’re building a burger with a crispy cheese sheet on top and it looks insane. Oh cheese, how I love YOU.
And since risotto has cheese, I love it too. And this risotto has whole grains, which makes my love for it all the more intense.
I really love the risotto + salmon combo. I also really love the risotto + salmon + wine pairing…but we didn’t have any red wine in the house. I suggested to Andrew that we walk to our grocery store to pick up a bottle to serve with dinner, but we ended up walking the opposite direction to the dog park…still a win, especially for Maggie.
If you do have red wine, pour yourself a glass with this meal. Fortunately, balsamic glaze is very nearly like wine since it’s aged to perfection (if you spring for a fancy one).
Now risotto is usually made using just arborio rice, but I thought we’d add a smidge of U.S.-grown brown rice because research has shown that whole grains help reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, including heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers. Research has also shown that rice eaters may lower their risk of high blood pressure by 34%. So that right there is reason enough for me to “Think Rice” for any meal.
For instance, a lunchtime favorite of mine are variations of these bowls. Mainly because they’re quite easy to prep Sunday night for lunches all week and they have whole grains, bunches of veggies and some lean protein. A winner for sure.
Ever since having the slow baked salmon at Reef, I’ve fallen in love with slowly baking salmon. Occasionally we’ll still saute salmon in a pan so it gets that crispy crust, but I think it tastes fresher when you just bake it and it doesn’t get quite as oily. (More on fresh things later this week!!) I guess I could sear the outside of the fish until crispy and then slow bake the salmon until it’s cooked through. Yes. I’ll do that next time.
With the strawberries and thick, tangy balsamic glaze topping the dish seems to remind me of a (rather savory) ice cream sundae of sorts. But it’s dinner!<333
To see a zillion other things you can do with U.S.-grown rice…check out the round-up below!
Strawberry Brown Rice Risotto with Slow Baked Salmon
Yield: serves 4
Prep Time: 15 minute
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
2/3 cup U.S.-grown arborio rice
1/3 cup U.S.-grown brown rice
3+ cups chicken stock, added in increments
1 cup chopped strawberries, divided
1/3 cup Parmesan, shaved
4, 6 oz salmon portions
toppings: balsamic glaze & fresh basil
Preheat oven to 250ºF.
Place salmon pieces on a foil-lined baking sheet. Drizzle each piece of salmon with 1 teaspoon olive oil and top with a sprinkle of salt/pepper. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 145ºF. If your salmon is finished baking before your risotto is ready, remove salmon from oven and tent with foil to keep warm until ready to serve.
While salmon is baking, make your risotto. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat. Once hot, add in onions and saute, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Stir in arborio and brown rice. Let the rice toast for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Then pour in 1 cup chicken stock. Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently until almost all the liquid is absorbed. Then continue adding chicken stock in 1/2 cup increments, stirring throughout, until all rice has softened. This will take 30-35 minutes. Reduce heat to low and stir in parmesan and 1/2 cup strawberries.
Serve salmon over the risotto and top with fresh strawberries, basil and a balsamic glaze drizzle.