Cajun Salmon with Jicama and Melon Salad
- SERVINGS: 4
The sweet notes in the refreshing salad provide a cooling contrast to the spice-crusted fish. If you have a Cajun spice blend in your pantry, you can use it here instead of making you own.
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 10 ounces jicama or bosc pear, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 cups diced Galia or honeydew melon (1/2 inch)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tablespoon coarsely ground white pepper
- 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, crushed
- 2 tablespons paprika
- Four 6-ounce salmon fillets with skin
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
- In a small bowl, combine the orange juice, mint, cilantro, lemon juice and olive oil. In a medium bowl, combine the jicama and melon. Keep both bowls in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Preheat the oven to 450°. On a large plate, combine all of the spices. Season the salmon with salt and coat both sides of each fillet with the spice mixture.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a large ovenproof skillet. When the oil is hot, add the salmon, skin side down. Add the butter and shake the pan to incorporate the butter into the oil. Cook the salmon over high heat for 3 minutes, then transfer the skillet to the oven and roast for 2 minutes. Turn the fillets and roast them for about 3 minutes longer, depending on the thickness of the fish. Set the salmon on 4 large plates, skin side up.
- Toss the jicama and melon with the dressing and season with a pinch of salt. Spoon the salad next to the fish and serve at once.
Pair with an Alsace Pinot Blanc, such as Macel Deiss Bergheim or Trimbach.