Today we have a protein upon protein recipe. We will be using pasta, so that means we have some carbs involved, however, the sauce can be the main ingredient here. We will be mixing lentils and so the sauce will not be too strong, in fact, if you really wanted to, you could add more lentils and skip the pasta altogether!! Lentils are a great source of fiber, a decent source of protein, iron, and Vitamin B6, so a good pasta replacement if you want to add even more proteins! ! Salmon as we all know is a great source of Vitamin D, and those healthy fatty acids and Greek yogurt is a great source of probiotics, (however, there is a chance we will kill them as we’re cooking the yogurt)! Yogurt and cottage cheese also help the protein boost here as well as give us some lovely calcium, which is a great combo with Vitamin D, since Vitamin D will help us absorb the calcium better!! So, let’s see how this lovely recipe goes!
- Red Lentils
- Wine (preferably white)
- Soy Cream (optional)
- Greek Yogurt
- Cottage Cheese
- Salt and Pepper to taste
First off, dice the onions and garlic finely and start grilling them with some coriander. Add a little wine once the pan is nice and hot and let the garlic and onions absorb all the flavors (the wine will evaporate very quickly). In the meantime, start boiling the red lentils in water and some wine (or milk for extra proteins, however, if you’re using milk you might want to avoid tossing wine in there, it has a not-so-pleasant reaction).
Add the salmon to the onions and grill it until it looks cooked on the outside. Once our fish looks cooked, cover it and leave it for a while so it can cook from the inside without drying out. When the salmon is soft enough, flake it and remove the skin (preferably you cook the salmon on its skin, it helps it cook better without drying out and it helps to keep more of those good fatty acids). Add the soy cream, Greek yogurt, and cottage cheese to the salmon flakes and let it simmer for a minute or two, add the lentils, mix well and let the sauce rest on very low heat for a few more minutes.
While our sauce is slowly reducing, cook the pasta to your favorite state (I like mine al dente), toss the pasta in the sauce, and turn off the heat if you haven’t already (keep an eye out, we don’t want a dried out sauce). Mix in some rosemary (and maybe some more herbs if you like) and lunch is served!
Some herb ideas you might want to try include dill, oregano, marjoram, parsley, mint, and basil, all usually blend nicely with fish. I, however, prefer to leave the salmon rather plain cos I really enjoy its taste, and this recipe will actually let all the ingredients taste very similar to salmon so it’s perfect for me! I overcooked the lentils, however, this made the sauce thicker and creamier so it wasn’t an issue. However, if the lentils had kept their lovely color it would have looked better as in presentation. Another idea is adding caviar to the mix, either just before plating or as a decoration to add taste and style to your plate (caviar shouldn’t be cooked). Here we continued to grill the salmon skin and rolled it for some extra healthy fats and protein. Salmon skin may not be the best idea for weight loss, however, it has a ton of health benefits so, even if you’re trying to lose weight, maybe you should indulge in some salmon skin occasionally! We added a little parsley for some extra color and style (and extra health benefits too!)
Another way to enjoy this recipe is drying out the sauce a little more and blending it to create a perfectly healthy dip! In this case, I would add the yogurt and cottage cheese to the lentils and dry them out a little before adding them to the salmon, just not to overcook our fish. Flaking the salmon well and making sure it is well cooked before mixing it with the rest of the recipe can also create a lovely dip with fun and colorful bits to it, creating both texture and visual interest! Hope you enjoy this recipe, and try some variation of it! You can also try our similar recipe using smoked salmon if you enjoyed this idea! As always, we would like to hear your thoughts and experiences!