01 Feb Sockeye Salmon with Leeks
Thought I would sneak in a heart-healthy recipe post before Super Bowl Sunday tempts us all with its wings and poppers. Heart-heathy eating is a topic on Petiterie because there’s some evidence that being petite places you at slightly higher risk for cardiovascular issues (here are the details). If you are surprised to read this, you’re not on your own. I was, too, and so is pretty much anyone I mention it to. I think of it this way: heart-healthy eating is a wise choice for everyone, and appears to be even more so if you are petite.
The benefits of eating fish on the health of your heart come from the presence of omega-3 fatty acids. Research shows that regular consumption of the omega-3 fatty acids found in seafood can decrease the risk of abnormal heart rhythms, lower triglyceride levels, slow the growth of fatty deposits that clog arteries, and even lower blood pressure a bit. Evidence continues to accumulate about the beneficial effect of eating fish in preventing a whole host of cardiovascular issues (including heart disease, stroke, heart failure, sudden cardiac death, and congestive heart failure). This has prompted the American Heart Association to issue an updated advisory statement recently touting the link between eating fish and heart health, along with their recommended guidelines.
To maximize the benefits of eating fish, the AHA recommends eating two 3.5-ounce servings of non-fried fish every week, particularly of the kinds that contain the highest amounts of omega-3’s. These include certain types of salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines and albacore tuna. You can read more about this from the American Heart Association here and here.
Whenever possible, I try to eat wild-caught salmon, like wild sockeye. It’s been shown to have fewer calories, less saturated fat, and lower levels of contaminants than farm-raised salmon.
Leeks are good for your heart, too. Dietician Michelle Rauch, MS RD, one of Petiterie’s expert recipe reviewers, says: “Leeks are good sources of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, and magnesium, and are also a very good source of folate, as well as vitamins A, C, and K.”
This recipe could not be easier — a few simple ingredients, easy to prepare… and tasty as you please.
From my heart to yours… Bon appetit!
Sockeye Salmon and Leeks
3 medium leeks
1 clove garlic
2 3.5 ounce fillets of wild-caught Sockeye salmon, skin removed
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Slice leeks lengthwise, wash and pat dry with a towel. Slice into 1/4″ wide half-rings.
3. Peel garlic clove and mince.
4. Place salmon fillets on a baking dish.
5. Rub about 1/4 of the minced garlic clove on the top of each fillet.
6. Season with the fillets with about 1/8 teaspoon of sea salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes each.
7. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
8. While the fish is baking, heat the olive oil in a medium sized sautee pan on medium heat. Add the leeks and remaining garlic, salt, and pepper, and sautee about 10 minutes, stirring frequently until the leeks are soft and some are beginning to slightly carmelize (turn brown).
9. Serve the salmon on top of a bed of the sauteed leeks.
Thanks to Petiterie’s consultants Michelle Rauch, MS RD, and Andrea Rein, NPc, for their expertise in reviewing and contributing to this post.