Oven Baked Sockeye Salmon with Herb Lemon Butter – Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly, Gluten Free & Paleo

Oven Baked Sockeye Salmon with Herb Lemon Butter - Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly, Gluten Free & Paleo

Ev and I have been on a bit of a salmon kick lately, making the most of the last of the fresh caught salmon this season. It’s still available over winter, just frozen and a little more expensive – though the price here in Seattle has nothing on how much even farmed Atlantic salmon would cost in Australia.

When my parents were visiting us over Easter this year, they went through the same shock that we did when we moved to Seattle – Salmon is how cheap? There are so many varieties! You can get wild caught salmon in the supermarket, without going to a fishmonger?! Bliss. I have a feeling that the reason they are going to visit us again next summer has something to do with the salmon (and the dogs) and less to do with us. When we eventually move from Seattle, we will definitely miss the fresh seafood. Not that we don’t have a plentiful supply of fresh seafood in Australia, it’s just much more affordable over here.

Salmon is a very healthy and abundant source of omega 3/healthy fats, protein – with all the essential amino acids present (22 g/100 g), vitamins B-6 and -12, and selenium, as well as containing moderate amounts of potassium, phosphorous and the other B group vitamins. Definitely something that should be a regular part of an healthy diet for those who eat meat.

Notes: 

  1. Lemon is a low FODMAP fruit. Use slightly sweet, juicy lemons, not bitter lemons, which can impart the bitterness onto the salmon – been there, done that. It can really spoil an otherwise delicious meal.
  2. Oregano is low FODMAP but does contain salicylates, which can also cause IBS symptoms. But once again, low FODMAP.
  3. Butter is lower in lactose due to its reduced water content, though for a dairy free/lactose free version you could use coconut oil or a dairy free spread of your choice for a different, though just as tasty flavour.
  4. Fresh fish will always taste best – a fresh fish shouldn’t smell of much at all. If your fish smells “fishy,” it probably is. We normally buy whole fresh fish, as they are considerably cheaper per pound and you can make stock with the skeleton.

Baked Salmon with Herb Lemon Butter

Serves 10.

  • 2.5 kg/5.5 lb whole sockeye salmon
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed oregano leaves
  • 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 tbsp. garlic infused olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 4-5 lemons, sliced into rounds
  • 2 lemons, sliced into wedges for serving

Clean and fillet your salmon, if not already done – leave the skin on. Rinse and pat dry the salmon, before slicing 4-5 x 1 cm deep slices into the skin. This will require a sharp knife, as the skin can be quite tough.

Choose your baking dish and lay down a bed of the lemon slices, on which you will later lay the salmon.

In a food processor, combine the oregano leaves, butter, garlic oil, lemon juice, sea salt and pepper and blend until smooth, the leaves should end up finely shredded. Rub the mixture on both sides of each salmon fillet, before placing them skin side UP on the lemon rounds. Cover in foil and store in the refrigerator for at least an hour, to let the flavours seep into the fish.

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Preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F; when ready, place the covered tray on the middle shelf and bake for 20 minutes, at which point you’ll remove the foil and bake for a further 10 minutes. If your fish is smaller, it might not need any more time, or 5 minutes at the most. Keep an eye on it.

Once the fish is flaking apart, remove it from the oven and carefully lay it on a bed of greens. The skin will peel off easily, for those who don’t wish to eat it. The lemon livens up the salmon’s natural flavours, while the butter and oregano play very well with everything. Delicious and a definite crowd pleaser… enjoy!

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Oven Baked Sockeye Salmon with Fennel and Lemon – Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly, Gluten Free & Paleo

Oven Baked Sockeye Salmon - Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly, Gluten Free and Paleo

Ev and I had people over a few weeks ago to welcome a couple of friends to Seattle and we decided that it was going to be too hot to have the oven on all day to prepare our usual dinner party staples. What to do, what to do?

Then it hit us.

We’re nearing the end of Sockeye Salmon season here in the Pacific Northwest (*sobs uncontrollably*), so it’s the perfect time to get our Sockeye fix in while we can. In my humble opinion, Sockeye is the best value salmon you can get, at least in Seattle, in terms of taste for the price; and just take a look at the colour of this beauty! You can’t beat wild caught salmon.

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Once your salmon has been filleted, there is very little prep work involved with this dish, making it a quick and easy meal to cook for a lot of wow factor. The beauty of this cooking method is that you don’t have to adjust it much for a smaller fish, especially if the fillets are the same thickness. The skin and the foil help to keep the moisture in – you’ll just need less marinade.

Notes:

  1. Lemons are a low FODMAP fruit.
  2. Fennel leaves are low FODMAP in servings of 1/2 a cup.
  3. Fresh fish will always taste best – a fresh fish shouldn’t smell of much at all. If your fish smells “fishy,” it probably is. We normally buy whole fresh fish, as they are considerably cheaper per pound and you can make stock with the skeleton.

Baked Salmon with Fennel and Lemon

Serves 10.

  • 2.5 kg/5.5 lb whole sockeye salmon
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice (approx. half a lemon)
  • 1 tbsp. ground sea salt
  • 2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1.5 tsp. ground cumin
  • 4 lemons, sliced into rounds
  • 6 sprigs of fennel leaves

Clean and fillet the salmon, if it has not already been done – leave the skin on. Rinse and pat dry the salmon, before slicing 4-5 x 1 cm deep slices into the skin. The skin can be a little tough, so this will require a sharp knife.

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Wash and dry the lemons and fennel sprigs. Next, slice 3.5 lemons into rounds and juice the remaining half. While your hands are clean, get a baking tray ready and line it with baking paper, before laying out two rows of lemon slices and fennel sprigs, on which you will later bake the salmon. Reserve 8-10 lemon slices for the garnish.

Briskly combine the olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt, black pepper and cumin together to emulsify the ingredients and then rub the mixture thoroughly all over both sides of the salmon fillets. Lay each fillet skin side UP on the rows of lemon/fennel and cover the tray with foil. Store in the fridge for at least one hour, to let the marinade work its magic.

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Preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F. When ready, place the covered baking tray on the middle shelf and bake for 20 minutes, at which point you will remove the foil and bake for a further 10 minutes. The fish will be perfectly cooked and flake apart, so be careful when you move it to the serving dish!

To serve, lay out a bed of greens on a long plate and carefully transport each fillet to the dish, along with the lemons/fennel, if you wish. The skin will peel off easily, if you don’t like to eat it and the simple marinade really enhances the flavour of the salmon. I could eat this every day.

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Warm Salmon Salad, Dressed in a Lemon, Ginger and Soy Sauce – Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free

Warm Salmon Salad Dressed in Lemon, Ginger and Soy Sauce - Low FODMAP, Fructose Friendly & Gluten Free 1

Firstly, I apologise for the dodgy photos in this post; my camera’s battery had run out and I used my phone, which isn’t great for indoor photos.

Secondly, have I mentioned how spoilt we are for salmon in the Pacific Northwest? It’s crazy good. In Melbourne, you’re lucky to get lightly ripped off when you buy Atlantic salmon, which is really just farmed salmon that’s never even sniffed the Atlantic Ocean… side note to any ichthyologists out there, can fish smell? In Seattle, Atlantic doesn’t even factor into our choice of salmon, it’s the bottom of the barrel. At your local supermarket you can get whole Chinook, Coho and Sockeye (my personal fav) when they’re in season for about a third of what we pay for Atlantic back home; when they’re out of season, they’re still only about half the price. There are more varieties, of course, if you go to specialty fish markets.

Guess what July is? The middle of Sockeye salmon season.

Notes:

  1. The green tips of leek are low FODMAP.
  2. Zucchini is low FODMAP in servings of 1/2 cup.
  3. Cherry tomatoes are low FODMAP in servings of 1/2 cup.
  4. Mushrooms contain mannitol, so if you malabsorb mannitol then swap them out for more zucchini.
  5. Spinach is low FODMAP in servings of 1 cup.
  6. Lemon, ginger and soy sauce are all low FODMAP. Use gluten free soy sauce if you are a coeliac/sensitive to gluten.

Warm Salmon Salad

Sauce

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 cm of ginger root, minced finely
  • Juice of half a lemon, plus a little from the other half

Salad

  • Olive oil
  • Garlic infused olive oil
  • 225 g/8 oz salmon fillet – I like sockeye
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup green leek tips, finely sliced
  • 1 large zucchini, halved and sliced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 8 button mushrooms, finely sliced

Seal your pan with the olive oil and pan fry the salmon fillets over a med-high heat; it should take about 4 minutes on the first side and 2 minutes on the second, though this will depend on the thickness of the fillets. Once for each side, drizzle with the “little bit” of lemon juice from the second half of the lemon.

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Meanwhile, lay out washed baby spinach on a serving dish. Saute the leek tips, zucchini, cherry toms and button mushrooms in the garlic infused olive oil until tender (not over cooked) and remove from the heat.

By this time, the salmon should almost be done. Turn down the heat to low and cut the salmon into bite-sized chunks and stir through the sauce ingredients. Once the sizzling has stopped, stir through the sauteed veggies.

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Layer the warm salmon and veggies over a bed of fresh baby spinach (you could wilt the spinach if you like but I prefer it fresh) and serve with white rice. The white rice takes 30 minutes to cook (without a rice cooker, I couldn’t tell you how long it would take with one), so make sure you get it going before you start cooking the salmon and veggies, as they only take 10 minutes once they’re on the heat.

Oh and the most important part – enjoy!

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Huckleberry Slice – Low Fructose & Gluten Free

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Huckleberries are pretty exclusive to the Pacific Northwest and few months back I was lucky enough to inherit a bag of frozen huckleberries that a friend had picked last summer but couldn’t take with her when she moved back to Georgia. I say lucky, because they grow in mountainous regions and are usually handpicked. They look like mini blueberries and (to me) taste like blueberries with a citrus twist.

They had been sitting in the freezer since March and they were really beginning to bug me. Why wasn’t I proactive enough to thaw them out and actually do something with them? We have a tiny freezer, well in proportion with our “closet kitchen” and space is precious with a capital P.

Finally I decided what I would do: when we were back in Australia this Easter, my little sister made me a raspberry slice that she very kindly altered to be fructose friendly. It was delicious, and I especially liked the almond meal base.

I figured that huckleberries, with their slight citrus tang, would go nicely with the maple syrup in the almond meal slice. Not knowing the recipe that Lisa used, I altered my almond meal pastry recipe slightly to suit.

Almond Slice Base

  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 4 tbsp. coconut butter/unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 egg

Preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F. Hand or stand mix all of the above ingredients until they are thoroughly combined. Adjust the mixture with more almond meal if it’s too runny or more maple syrup or butter if it’s too dry. It should be tacky and easily moldable – not dry/crumbly or too sloppy.

Line a 9″ square cake pan/casserole dish with baking paper and press the mixture evenly across the dish and into the corners.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, until it is slightly firm to the touch.

Huckleberry Topping

  • 2 cups huckleberries (or other berries of your choice, fresh or frozen)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup shredded desiccated coconut – swap for slivered nuts of your choice if coconut is problematic for you

Simmer the berries and maple syrup for 20-30 minutes, until the berries have burst, let their juices out and the mixture has begun to thicken. You could cheat a little here and add some corn starch dissolved in a tsp. of water but we don’t want starchy flavours in this.

Pour the mixture on top of the semi-baked slice base and top with the shredded coconut/slivered nuts. Return to the oven and continue baking for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven when topping is slightly firmed and then allow it to cool. The slice will continue to firm up with cooling and is best eaten after at least 3-4 hours. You could eat it straight away, of course – but you’ll probably require a spoon.

Here is the slice post baking.

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Serving it is as easy as letting it cool then slicing it into 2.5 x 5 cm sections and plating them up.

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The edge pieces were nearly all stained dark blue but the inner pieces had a clear definition between slice base and topping.

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Enjoy with freshly whipped cream, ice cream, vanilla bean custard, tea or coffee. Once sliced, these would also make a handy and nutritious snack on the go or a morning tea to have at work/school.

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