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Scandinavian Salmon with Cabbage and Dill

We present today's recipe in honor of all-too-scarce wild Atlantic salmon and the efforts to save the species. And it tastes equally good made with any of our Alaskan species.

This luscious comfort-food recipe for Scandinavian-Polish style salmon is adapted from Kitchen Life by Art Smith.

The dish may not seem especially healthful at first blush (except for the salmon), but cabbage belongs to the strongly anti-cancer cruciferous vegetable family, while dill is a potent antioxidant food, ranking just above rosemary and thyme on the ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) scale.

Butter is certainly more traditional—and yields an irreplaceable flavor—but this dish is also delicious if made with heart-healthy macadamia nut oil or extra virgin olive oil.

Scandinavian Salmon with Cabbage and Dill

Serves 4

1 tablespoon unsalted butter or organic macadamia nut or extra virgin olive oil
1 pound bag coleslaw cabbage mix (or handmade version)
3 teaspoons chopped fresh dill, divided
1 teaspoon organic fennel seed
Sea salt and organic black pepper to taste
3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
4 (6 oz each) skinless-boneless wild Alaskan salmon fillets
3 tablespoons sour cream
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch (or powdered arrowroot*, cassava* root, or kuzu* root)

*Arrowroot and kuzu are available in natural foods supermarkets and Japanese groceries.  Cassava powder is found in or tropical groceries.

  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the coleslaw mix and 2 teaspoons dill. Cook, stirring often, until the coleslaw wilts and is heated through, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a large platter and cover tightly to keep warm.

  • Wipe out the skillet. Add the broth and bring to a boil over medium heat. Season the salmon with salt and pepper and sprinkle the tops with the remaining 1 teaspoon dill. Add to the skillet and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the fillets have a rosy center when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, 6‒8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the salmon to the sautéed coleslaw and cover.

  • Whisk the sour cream and cornstarch in a small bowl to dissolve the cornstarch. Whisk into the broth in the skillet and cook until the sauce returns to a simmer and thickens slightly. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Pour the sauce over the coleslaw and salmon, serve immediately.

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