I hope you enjoy the food!!!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Salmon and Lentils with Avocado and Chermoula

I know I have said it before, but I am a sucker for a pretty food picture (yes I know, call it as it is, food porn!!).  I guess that is why I am such a big cooking magazine buyer - I buy them all (well just about!!).  When the latest edition of MasterChef Magazine arrived I flipped through it several times marking out the recipes that I wanted to try.  Of course the ones with the full page photos usually get my attention first.  Such was the case with this recipe.

After cooking the recipe though, I feel I may have been duped again by those food stylists!!  I cooked this one down to a T!  My only problem may have been avocados that were on the slightly mushy side - but hey - all else I did exactly as they said.  I can tell you my lentils, as lentils are prone to do - were a little on the mushy side.  Yet when I look back at the photo (again, and again) I see perfectly formed little orange "grains"  All I can say is they undercooked theirs for the photo!!!

Having said all that the dish was not a total failure.  It certainly needed a little pepping up - perhaps some chilli may not have even gone astray - but it contained salmon - so how could it be a disaster???

Salmon and Lentils with Avocado and Chermoula Salad
From MasterChef Magazine - March edition

Serves 4

200g (1 cup lentils)
4 x 200g pieces skinless, pin boned salmon fillet
2 avocados
1 tbs olive oil


1 bunch coriander
2 lemons
3 cloves garlic
2 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1 tbs red wine vinegar
80ml (1/3 cup) olive oil

To make the chermoula, wash the coriander, then pick 1/4 cup of leaves and reserve (for garnish).  Place the remaining coriander, including roots, stems and leaves in the food processor.  Juice lemons, then add to the food processor, along with the garlic, cumin, paprika, vinegar, oil and 1/2 tsp salt.  Process until smooth.  Makes 1 cup.

Cook the lentils in a saucepan of boiling water for 12 minutes, or until tender.

Preheat grill to high.  Place the salmon on a greased oven tray.  Drizzle 1 tbs of chermoula over each piece of salmon, then cook for 8 minutes or until just cooked.  Rest for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile to make the salad, halve and remove the stones from the avocados.  Using a small knife, score the flesh into 1cm pieces while still in the skin.  Using a large spoon, scoop out the flesh close to the skin in one movement, then place in a bowl.  Add remaining chermoula and toss gently to combine.

Drain lentils and return to the pan.  Season with salt and pepper, then toss with 1 tbs oil.

Divide the lentils among serving plates, top with a piece of salmon.  Spoon over avocado and chermoula salad, then scatter with reserved coriander leaves.

I added some steamed asparagus, and halved cherry tomatoes to mine - thought it needed a little more vegie power  (though technically speaking that was one vegie and one fruit)!!!

There were good flavours there - but it just needed a little more pizzaz!  I think I will try it again.  Perhaps cook the lentils a little less.  Add a little more spice to the chermoula??

So Dear Readers do you get sucked in by a pretty face (picture)??  Do you assume that any recipe that has your favourite ingredient in it will be an instant winner?


  1. I'm partial to adding more of whatever flavour a recipe stipulates, some mags in particular play it safe I think. And dodgy stuff definitely goes on with food styling - all part of the illusion ! Salmon looks lovely though :)

  2. All my favourite ingredients so this has to be extra special. Diane

  3. Great flavour! The kind of dinner that I like.