A Very Special Potato Crusted Salmon

Evelyn Dawn’s Potato Crusted Salmon
Sautéed Vegetables, Lemon Dill Sauce
@ Gina Lee’s Bistro, Redondo Beach, California

Evelyn Dawn was my grandmother-in-law. She passed away at 93 years of age in the year 2000.

As a tribute when Evelyn passed, my dear friends Scott & Gina Lee, proprietors of Gina Lee’s Bistro, named this dish after her. They keep her memory alive in their fabulous restaurant. New patrons ask, who is Evelyn Dawn and why is the salmon named for her? They are quick to tell about Evelyn; an independent woman ahead of her time, with impeccable taste, a successful businesswoman, friend, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and educator of hundreds. A framed photograph of Evelyn sits atop the sideboard in the restaurant.

Gina said of the salmon dish, “This is a crowd favorite. Lots of people remember Miss Dawn the founder of Rolling Hills Country Day School. She came in the restaurant nearly daily and always had the salmon professing that the omega 3 fatty acids kept her going at top speed. We’ve had former students and teachers come in, they marvel that she lives on, on our menu.”

Miss Evelyn Dawn
July 8, 1907 – July 16, 2000

Evelyn in her 90’s with a glass of red wine and a cigar!

Rolling Hills Country Day School was founded by Evelyn Dawn who began educating children in the early 50’s. She bought and operated her first school in Manhattan Beach, California – a preschool. In 1961, Miss Dawn, with very little assistance, broke ground on a beautiful piece of land on the Palos Verdes Peninsula and realized her dream of a Kindergarten through Grade 8 School. She named it Rolling Hills Country Day School, now about to celebrate 50 successful years of educating children in the South Bay.

I previously wrote about Evelyn Dawn’s Potato Crusted Salmon in 2008. We are dining on the salmon and remembering Evelyn again this July, the month of her birth and 10th anniversary of her passing. Rest in peace Nana.

Evelyn Dawn’s Potato Crusted Salmon
Sautéed Vegetables, Lemon Dill Sauce
Recipe from Scott & Gina Lee
Ingredients:
  • Salmon
  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Hash Brown Potatoes
  • Flat Leaf Italian Parsley
  • Salt and Pepper
Cut salmon on a bit of an angle into 3.5 ounce portions. Dust in flour. Dip in egg. Roll in hash browns to which you have added salt and pepper and coarsely chopped Italian parsley. Put aside.

Lemon Dill Sauce:

  • 3 cups White Wine
  • Juice of two Lemons and their Zest
  • 1/2 cup of chopped Shallots
  • One bunch of chopped Fresh Dill
  • 1 cup unsalted Butter
Heat first four ingredients in a sauce pan. Reduce by 1/3. When reduced, strain and slowly add 1 cup of all melted butter. This is your sauce. Keep warm. The salmon is pan sauteed in olive oil on one side, flipped and then put into a 450 degree oven for 7-10 minutes depending on how you like it cooked. The salmon is served pan roasted side up…on top of zucchini, yellow squash and carrots that have been sautéed in olive oil and mirin. For plating…vegetables on the bottom, salmon on top, coat with lemon dill sauce and a dash of fresh lemon juice.


Gina Lee’s Bistro
211 Palos Verdes Blvd.
Redondo Beach, CA
310-375-4462
Gina Lee’s Menu here.

Blackened Salmon-Skin Chopped Salad

Alaskan Copper River King Salmon was selling at our nearby market for $40/lb. The local Whole Foods fishmonger told me that their store was not carrying Copper River this year because it was too expensive. Luckily we discovered another fabulous source for King Salmon (aka Chinook): Youngs Bay, Oregon. Copper River King Salmon is still a treat, the world’s finest salmon, the ultimate fish luxury due to its very high oil content stored for the long journey in pristine icy waters. But the less expensive Youngs Bay does come in a very close second…

This past Saturday I shared a recipe for a steamed filet of Salmon with Meyer Lemon Cream. Before steaming a filet, the skin must be removed. Here, the skin removed from that filet is made into a spicy crunchy chopped salad. Youngs Bay Chinook may be less expensive, but it’s not cheap, so we don’t want to waste any bit of it!

Continue reading “Blackened Salmon-Skin Chopped Salad”

Steamed Salmon & Spinach Salad, Meyer Lemon Cream

Fresh Youngs Bay Spring Chinook Salmon
Baby Spinach, Meyer Lemon Wheels,
Toasted Pine Nuts, Cherry Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives
Meyer Lemon Cream, Parsley Garnish

“The quality of the Youngs Bay Spring Chinook is comparable, if not superior to the fabled Copper River king salmon,” says Michael Morrissey, Ph.D., director and professor, Oregon State University Seafood Laboratory.

Youngs Bay is a body of water just west of Astoria, Oregon near the mouth of the mighty Columbia River. I am so excited to have discovered this fabulous salmon with its high (good) fat content, rich flavor and firm texture – and it’s less expensive than Copper River salmon!

We are smitten with our Meyer Lemons (salad with endive and violas here) and addicted to Meyer Lemon Cream… For this salmon salad the lemons are sliced thin – the entire fruit is edible, including the thin, soft, smooth rind. The dressing is made with shallot, lemon juice and cream (or heart-healthy cream substitute).

Continue reading “Steamed Salmon & Spinach Salad, Meyer Lemon Cream”

Salmon & Goat Cheese Quiche


Ah yes, more salmon! This time it is the cold-smoked salmon baked in a quiche with goat cheese, fresh chives and dill.


Fresh sniped dill added to the custard.


Pour the herbed mixture of eggs and cream over the goat cheese and salmon layered in the crust.


I use my Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron Tarte Tatin pan for making quiche as well as tarte tatin. This is a great pan!


My ratio for quiche custard is:

  • 5 whole large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups of warm light cream
  • 1 T flour
  • salt and pepper
I beat this with an electric hand mixer.
Bake at 350 for about 1 hour (maybe a little longer).


Uh, oops. How did that get in here?

I’m keeping no secrets from you: I used Trader Joe’s Baking Spray with Flour and Pillsbury Pie Crust 🙂

P.S. Happy Pi Day! 3.14.2008

My egg pie is a tribute to this mysterious and most important mathematical constant known as pi: 3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105820974944592307816406286208998628034825342117067982148086513282306647093844609550582231725359408128481117450284102701938521105559644622948954930381964428810975665933446128475648233786783165271201909145648566923460348610454326648213393607260249141273724587006606315588174881520920962829254091715364367892590360011330530548204665213841469…it’s an irrational and transcendental number that never terminates…

Pi Day has an official website: www.piday.org
Pi Palindrome: I PREFER PI
Did you know Albert Einstein was born on Pi Day 1879?

Wild Salmon Dinner Party

The White Cane is a vessel in Bristol Bay, Alaska fished by Randy Houghton for 36 years. Randy was born with macular degeneration, a visual disorder that rendered him legally blind with only peripheral vision…hence the name White Cane. In spite of his visual handicap, Randy, with the help of his crew and improved technology, is able to successfully operate his 32 ft. fishing vessel in the Bristol Bay waters.
Very recently, the White Cane and a few other dedicated fishers decided to independently harvest their catch of sockeye with the goal of producing the finest quality of fish in Bristol Bay. The have assured that the sockeye are maintained at a temperature of 34 degrees while on the vessel, and processed and packaged within 24 hours. Because of the fishers’ experience, their overall diligence and care, we enjoyed this #1 rated Wild Sockeye Salmon at our party!
This was a fabulous and unique dinner party for several reasons:

  • It was a five course dinner, four of the courses were salmon from the Bristol Bay in Alaska! (We passed on a salmon dessert)
  • The fisherman flew into LA just to join us for dinner and teach us all about the salmon.
  • Everyone took part in the food preparation
  • Good wine, good friends, new friends, fun music
  • The finest of fish…
Menu



Starters

Lox Platter (Cold Smoked Sockeye) and Smoked Sockeye Salmon Spread
Construct your own canapés with Creme Fraiche, Chopped Egg, Chives, Capers, Lemon, Olives, Cream Cheese, Toasted Baguette, Crackers
Soup
Manhattan Salmon Chowder: Fragrant Tomato Chowder with Orange Zest, Pernod, Topped with Warm Steamed Sockeye

Bottega Vinaia Pinot Grigio

Salad


Sockeye Salmon Mousse & Mixed Greens with Herbs, Rice Wine Shallot Vinaigrette

Main Course


(Please see 3/09/08 post for complete recipe)
Slow Roasted Wild Sockeye, Red Potatoes, Citrus Herb Vinaigrette


Dessert

Lemon Sorbet with Limoncello and Chiffonade of Fresh Basil

Bristol Bay fishing photos courtesy of White Cane Sockeye Salmon. For more information on Wild Alaskan Sockeye straight from the fisherman contact our new friend Randy and his wife, Janis, at wcsockeye@yahoo.com.

Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon

This unique species of salmon begin their lives by spawning in the Alaskan fresh water lakes that flow into the Naknek and Egegik river systems. After living and growing for 1 to 2 years in these pristine waters, they make their way down river and thrive for another 2 to 3 years in the cold waters of the North Pacific and the Bering Sea.
During their life in the Pacific Ocean, the sockeye feed on plankton and krill, this gives them their bright red color.

Also their unique natural diet promotes their healthy high levels of Omega-3 fatty acids. On their return to the bay as mature wild sockeye salmon, the fish are selectively harvested only after enough salmon have returned safely to their spawning grounds. The fishery is carefully monitored to allow future generations of sockeye the same life cycle, and preserve this wonderful and unique salmon species. They are truly one of the healthiest fish to eat in the world.
This fabulous salmon was fished by Randy Houghton and his crew of White Cane Sockeye Salmon.

Slow Roasted Wild Sockeye, Red Potatoes, Citrus Herb Vinaigrette
Red Potatoes are sliced on a mandoline, layered into the roasting pan, drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with sea salt and pepper. Baked at 425 for about 20 to 25 minutes.
Lemon slices are scattered over the potatoes, topped with the seasoned sockeye, and more lemon slices and pitted kalamata olives. Roasted at 250 for 25 to 30 minutes (or to your preference).
Citrus Herb Vinaigrette: 4 parts olive oil, 2 parts lemon juice, 1 part orange juice, salt and pepper are whisked together. Mix in fresh thyme leaves and chopped basil. When the salmon is cooked, the vinaigrette is generously ladled over the warm fish.
This excellent recipe was inspired by one in Country Living magazine.