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Food
Fragrant roast salmon warms all the senses

Thursday, January 03, 2002

By Nancy Anderson, Post-Gazette Staff Writer

One of life's little pleasures on a cold winter's evening is being in a warm kitchen with the tantalizing aroma of something good baking in the oven.

 

In the case of today's Countdown, it's fresh rosemary wafting in the air from Rosemary-Roasted Salmon, a delicious entree that couldn't be easier to make or more attractive on the table.

"This is a perfect entree for a dinner party," said Mary Tambellini, who sent us the recipe. "It's a real time saver and looks so pretty."

This is Mary's fourth Countdown To Dinner -- the others were Meatball Soup, Spaghetti With Bacon and Peas, and Pasta with Basil, Tomatoes and Mozzarella -- and it may be the best yet.

"I probably found the recipe on the Food Network's Web page," the Mt. Lebanon resident said. "The smell of the rosemary roasting is heavenly."

She uses rosemary from her garden and, thanks to above average temperatures, still had a bumper crop in mid-December.

For company, she serves the entree with basmati rice and asparagus with roasted yellow pepper sauce. For an everyday meal, she uses rice and fresh broccoli or spinach.

Since it was a work night, we took the easy way out and bought frozen Stouffer's Scalloped Potatoes and a Greek salad from Giant Eagle's fresh salad case. Both complemented the juicy salmon beautifully.

An avid runner, Mary completed her 15th marathon in Chicago last October with husband Ron, a broker with Morgan Stanley. "We were happy because we did really well," she said.

For her home-based business, Menu Magic, she creates personalized cookbooks for people, taking their interests, favorite foods and cooking skills into account.

The pages are covered with sheet protectors and are housed in a flexible binder.

"It's a lot of fun for me," she said. "Each one has menus for six complete meals -- a total of 20 to 25 recipes geared toward the person and whatever kind of cook they are."

Obviously, Mary knows her way around the kitchen, and the lucky recipients, besides her husband, are children Cara, 20, a student at Northwestern University; and Lea, 18, and Jess, 14, both students in the Mt. Lebanon School District.

Rosemary-Roasted Salmon

2 large bunches fresh rosemary
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
1- to 2-pound center-cut salmon fillet with skin
2 large lemons, thinly sliced
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Arrange half of rosemary sprigs in single layer in center of heavy baking sheet. Arrange sliced red onion on top of the rosemary.

Place salmon, skin side down, on the onion. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover salmon with remaining rosemary sprigs.

Arrange lemon slices over rosemary. Drizzle olive oil over. Sprinkle lemon slices with salt. (Can be prepared 8 hours ahead, covered and refrigerated.)

Roast salmon, uncovered, until just cooked through, about 20 minutes.

Transfer salmon to plates. Serve with roasted onions and lemon slices.

Serves 4.


Do you have an entree, salad or vegetable side dish recipe (no desserts, please!) that can be made in 30 minutes or less from six ingredients or fewer (not counting water, salt and pepper)? Share it with Countdown to Dinner.

The PG tests all recipes and if we select your recipe for publication, you'll receive a free selection from our cookbook grab bag of current releases.

Send your recipe to Countdown to Dinner, Post-Gazette Food, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, or fax to 412-263-1313. Please include your name, neighborhood and daytime phone number. Or e-mail to: nanderson@post-gazette.com Questions? Call 412-263-1760.

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