Doughnuts. They appear on almost every single list of top 10 foods to avoid. Yet I just can’t seem to resist their white flour, sugary, deep-fried fatty goodness.
Doughnuts are the reason I don’t really mind driving my son to his 7am practices. You see, there’s this little hole-in-the-wall coffee shop that bakes outrageously delicious doughnuts. But you only have one chance per day to get ’em hot and fresh, which is, you guessed it, 7am.
Besides these doughnuts, I really do try to eat healthy by reducing unnecessary fats in my diet. I eat Greek Yogurt instead of sour cream, I replace the oil in baked goods with applesauce, and we only drink skim milk. But does that mean I strive to lead a fat-free life? Not at all. While doughnuts are on every list of foods to avoid, nuts, olive oil, avocado, and fatty fish are high-fat foods that are found on almost every list of foods you should not avoid.
And so, on those days, when Billy has an 7am practice and I just can’t resist a hot ‘n fresh honey cruller, I redeem my bad-fat breakfast with a good-fat dinner that uses three out of five healthiest fat foods: grilled salmon with walnut pesto.
For years, pesto has gotten a bad rap for being high in fat, having a super-strong flavor that doesn’t appeal to everyone, and being so “gourmet” that one could only eat it in a fancy restaurant or buy it pre-made from a fancy store. But I know that’s not true…and so will you after making this super-easy, super-fast, super-food, super-good supper.
P.S. I’m not gonna lie to you, this dinner isn’t the easiest one to sell to kids. But my kids do love it and it looks divine. It is my go-to dinner when I’m having company and want to make something that’s quick to make and sure to impress. It always delivers and gets rave reviews.
Super-Green Pesto with Grilled Salmon
1 cup mixed super-greens (I use a mixture of baby spinach, kale, and swiss chard)
1/3 cup of olive oil
1 garlic clove, smashed
¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus a bit more for sprinkling
¼ cup walnuts
Salt to taste.
One package gnocchi
Four palm-sized salmon fillets.
½ a lemon, sliced into four rounds
1 tbsp lemon pepper
A few sprigs of fresh dill
1. Preheat your grill and prepare your fish: sprinkle a bit of the lemon pepper on each section, then top with a sprig of dill, and then a slice of lemon over the dill.
2. Grill until the fish is just barely opaque-about 10 minutes. I like to cook my fish on a piece of tin foil. It’s easy to clean and to transport and I don’t have to worry about the fish falling through the cracks.
3. While the fish is cooking, prepare the pesto: Put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
4. Pour half of the pesto into your serving bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings.
5. Cook gnocchi according to the directions on the package. As soon as it is ready, scoop it out of the hot water directly into the bowl with the pesto. Any leftover pesto can be kept in the fridge for up to a week. Its great on baked potatoes, eggs, and pizza.
6. Gently mix the pesto and gnocchi, adding more sauce if necessary.
7. Serve, leaving the lemon and dill on the fish.