Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Brown Sugar Salmon with Caramelized Pineapple Quinoa



Brown sugar and honey marinated salmon is baked and served on a bed of coconut milk quinoa and caramelized pineapples. This sweet, Asian inspired meal is quick and delicious!

Last week, I was at camp with my church kids on the beach - which is amazing in itself - but it also makes me crave all things seafood. Is there anything better than fresh seafood right on the coast? I didn't have any control over the camp food menu but the trip sure inspired me to stock my menu this week full of seafood - salmon included! I love salmon any way it's prepared but this may just be my new favorite way.

The marinade gives a sweet and teriyaki-like flavor to the salmon but that brown sugar glaze takes it over the top. And paired with quinoa? Sold! I don't eat much raw pineapple but I can throw down some cooked pineapple and it paired beautifully with quinoa.

Set this to marinade before you leave for work and you can whip up dinner in minutes when you get home. Just don't overcook the salmon!



Brown Sugar Salmon with Caramelized Pineapple Quinoa
For the salmon:
1 pound salmon
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup fresh pineapple juice
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 of a whole pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into small chunks

For the quinoa:
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
lime juice, to taste
salt


In a large bowl, whisk together the marinade: brown sugar, honey, soy sauce, pineapple juice, dijon mustard, sesame oil, olive oil, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Place the salmon in a ziplock and pour the marinade over top. Seal and place in the refrigerator for up to 8 hours (at least 1 hour).

Once ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 and spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Use tongs to remove the salmon from the marinade and place it skin side down on the pan. Scatter the pineapple chunks around the salmon. Brush leftover marinade over top of both salmon and pineapple and sprinkle a little brown sugar for extra caramelization. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until salmon flakes easily. Flip the oven to broil and broil a minute or two for additional caramelization on top.

While the salmon bakes, prepare the quinoa. In a medium saucepan, bring the water and coconut milk to a boil. Reduce heat to low, add quinoa, and cover. Simmer until all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand another 5-10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and add red onion and cilantro. When pineapple is finished cooking, add it to the quinoa along with salt and lime juice to taste.

Serve salmon alongside quinoa, drizzling with extra honey is desired.

Source: slightly adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

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