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Black Sesame Crusted Salmon: Nourishing and Delicious

5.0 from 1 vote

You know I like to live in sync with the seasons, and that goes for how we eat as a family, as well. This Black Sesame Crusted Salmon we had for dinner recently hits the spot on many levels.

The Ingredients

First, let’s talk about why these ingredients are beneficial, especially for this time of year. Winter in particular is a time to pay extra attention to your kidneys, and in Chinese medicine, nurturing your kidney energy is vital to your overall well-being. They are known as the keepers of your vital life energy, or Qi (pronounced CHI) that you’re born with, and it’s your kidney Qi that plays a large part in nourishing your body as a whole. Who knew they were so important?!

There are certain foods in particular that help aid the functions of your kidneys during the winter months, and I’ve used lots of them in this recipe. The black sesame seeds, for instance, help nurture kidney Qi, as do most seeds and nuts (like chia, walnut, flax, etc.). The black sesame seeds are the star of the show here, as you can see.

They stay affixed to the salmon with the help of a bit of avocado oil I lightly brushed on the filets before pressing them into the seeds. Avocado is also a nourishing tonic for the kidneys. And the salmon itself is packed with nutrition! I used king salmon for this recipe, which is a once-in-a-while splurge for me, but with Omega 3 fatty acids that decrease inflammation and protect against certain chronic diseases, while being a great source of protein, any salmon will do.

Purple potatoes are highly nutritious in and of themselves, with a wide range of minerals and vitamins – and more potassium than bananas! They also have a lower glycemic index (GI) than most other potatoes, thanks to their extra polyphenols, so if you’re watching your blood sugar, these potatoes are a wise choice. And they are loaded with antioxidants and gut-healthy resistant starch.

Bok Choy is high on the list for a healthy, leafy green that will nourish your kidney energy. While considered a cruciferous vegetable, I love that it’s easy to prep, mild in taste, and cooks fast, which is a much better alternative (for me personally) than broccoli or Brussels sprouts, which I love but take longer to cook and prep.

The water chestnuts pack a nutritious punch: they can reduce oxidative stress, are loaded with antioxidants, and again, super easy to prep! You can almost eat them straight out of the can: just rinse, and toss them right into your recipe. I simmer the potatoes, a shallot, some garlic, a bit of dried ginger and coriander in coconut milk (another wonderful addition to boost kidney energy), and at the very end I toss in the Bok Choy and water chestnuts.

Place the sesame salmon over a bed of the potato mixture, squeeze a bit of lime, top with cilantro, and savor this yin-boosting, kidney-Qi-nurturing, delicious dinner.

I linked the sesame seeds and avocado oil below. I’m excited to start using these powerhouse seeds even more in future recipes. Enjoy!

Black Sesame Crusted Salmon

Recipe by Alessandra Macaluso
5.0 from 1 vote
Course: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Recipes, Season, WinterCuisine: Dinner
Servings

4

servings
Cooking time

40

minutes
Cook Mode

Keep the screen of your device on

Ingredients

  • 2-4 6 oz salmon filets, rinsed and patted dry, skin removed and checked for bones

  • 1 tsp. sea salt

  • 1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper

  • 3 tbsp. avocado oil, divided

  • 1/4 cup black sesame seeds, spread evenly on a flat plate

  • 2 tbsp. ghee or unsalted butter

  • 1 medium shallot, diced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger

  • 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom

  • 4-5 medium purple potatoes, chopped into 1-inch chunks (mine were skinny, so I used extra)

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk

  • 1 head Bok Choy, stalks separated and white stems removed

  • 1 can water chestnuts, rinsed

  • 1 lime, sliced

  • 3 tbsp. cilantro

Directions

  • Season the salmon filets with the salt and pepper. Drizzle 1 tbsp. of the avocado oil over the top of the salmon and use your hands or a brush to evenly coat. Carefully press the tops of the filets into the sesame seeds until fully coated with the seeds. Set aside.
  • Heat 2 tbsp. ghee or butter in a deep skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the shallot and stir until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, and coriander, stirring continuously for 30 seconds until fragrant, careful not to burn the garlic.
  • Add potatoes to the skillet and stir until well coated with the oil, shallots, garlic, and spices. cover and cook for 10 minutes to allow potatoes to soften. Remove cover, add coconut milk, return the cover to the pan, and cook for 20 minutes until potatoes are fork-tender.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, place a second pan over medium heat and add remaining 2 tablespoons of avocado oil. Once the oil is hot add the salmon filets, top-side down (with the sesame seeds face down), to the pan. Cook for about 4 minutes, untouched, until seeds become slightly browned. Carefully flip the filets with a spatula or tongs, cover, and cook for 4 additional minutes, untouched. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes.
  • Remove cover from potato mixture. Add Bok Choy, water chestnuts, and a squeeze of lime juice. Stir until evenly combined and allow to cook for about 5 minutes, just until the Bok Choy has slightly wilted. Transfer potato mixture to plates and top with salmon filets. Garnish with lime juice and cilantro.

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Organic Black Sesame Seeds
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Organic Avocado Oil

Alessandra Macaluso is the author of What a Good Eater! , Lucy the Bee and the Healing Honey, and The Real-Deal Bridal Bible. She’s also a Qigong and Tai Chi instructor, and overall wellness advocate. Her work has been featured in several anthologies which can all be found on her Amazon author page, and she has contributed to The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, TODAY Parents, and many other online publications.

Alessandra is a northerner-turned-southerner, enjoying the south with her children, Penelope and Ciro, and her husband, Greg.

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