Christmas for my family has not been a huge undertaking in nearly 10 years, but since then, my mom and I have brunch and Christmas dinner together, sometimes with other family or friends, sometimes just the two of us. Several years ago, I decided to take over the cooking. I’ve done maple roasted pork loin, cherry cranberry ham, cherry glazed turkey, maple mustard turkey, each with a random assortment of side dishes that have ranged from goat cheese & cauliflower Mac & cheese to apple sausage stuffing.
Caramelized Salmon with Baked Sweet Potatoes and Roasted Winter Veggies with White Wine Caramel & Pecorino Drizzle
Holiday food contains no calories or fat, so, go ahead and enjoy it
12 oz Salmon filet cut into 3, 4 oz filets
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp fine ground sea salt
1 tbsp Mrs. Dash Garlic & Herb
3 tbsp olive oil
1) Mix brown sugar, salt & Mrs. Dash together in a small bowl.
2) Coat each piece of salmon with olive oil. Then heat remaining olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Heat oven to broil (minimum of 450 degrees).
3) While oil is heating, coat top of each piece of salmon with sugar mixture. Add to hot pan (be careful, the sugar and oil combining may sputter) and cook over medium heat.
4) Cook for 2-3 minutes then flip over, and cook for 2-3 minutes. Coat second side with sugar mixture while first side is cooking.
5) Remove from pan, and add to oven-safe pan that has been coated with non-stick spray. Sprinkle remaining sugar mixture on top. Put into broiler and cook for 2-3 more minutes to brown the top. Remove from oven and enjoy!
*Adjust cooking times depending on the thickness of the pieces of salmon. It should easily fall apart with a fork, but be moist inside.
Roasted Winter Veggies with White Wine Caramel Drizzle & Pecorino
3 cups diced butternut squash
1/2 cup sweet red peppers, diced
1 cup cauliflower, cut into small pieces
1 cup broccoli, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup onion, diced
1 cup Brussels sprouts, quartered
1/8 cup white wine
Sauté pan drippings from Salmon (recipe above)
1/8 cup grated pecorino Romano
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp Mrs. Dash Herb & Garlic
1 tsp salt
1) Heat oven to 375. Coat baking sheet with non-stick spray.
2) Spread veggies onto baking sheet. Sprinkle spices over veggies, and put into the oven. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until brown.
3) While in the oven, add wine to sauté pan with caramel created by cooking the salmon. Heat until the caramel has become a thick liquid.
4) When veggies are cooked, transfer to serving bowl, drizzle wine caramel sauce over veggies, and add pecorino. Mix well.
Easiest Baked Sweet Potatoes Ever
2 -3 sweet potatoes
1 tsp Earth Balance or other butter-like substance
1 tsp grated pecorino
1) Wash sweet potatoes, cut tips off, and cut deep scores all around.
2) Put onto or in a microwave safe dish. Microwave for 4-5 minutes per potato (for 2, I microwaved for 12 minutes)
3) Take out, cut open, add Earth Balance an sprinkle with pecorino.
If done at the same time, all 3 items should be ready simultaneously, for a delicious meal in under 30 minutes.