Dairy free salmon, broccoli and pasta bake

I came up with this recipe as my eldest daughter has gone off salmon. Usually I just cook whole salmon. I buy Wild Alaskan as that’s the most sustainable and healthy salmon you can get.* However, wild salmon extrudes white albumin when cooked at a high temperature for too long. I must have been doing one of these things as the albumin, I think was what was putting her off.  This dish will appeal to children as it makes the salmon part of a pasta dish. If you’re not avoiding dairy or gluten then just use butter, milk, and normal pasta – though I tend to buy spelt as it has a lower gluten content.

DSCN6731

Portions
This recipe makes enough for one adult and 2 children (based on children having about 50-60g of fish and adult having about 100g).

Allergen free
This recipe was made without dairy or gluten. Though if you don’t need to avoid dairy – then you can use milk and butter. And of course use conventional wheat flour and breadcrumbs too.

You will need…
2 wild* (or if you can’t find wild then organically farmed) salmon fillets (about 200g)
1 carrot chopped
1/2 an onion whole
a few peppercorns
Bayleaf
40g vegan unhydrogenated olive oil spread
40g gluten free flour**
400ml coconut milk drink***
100g fresh or frozen peas
200g broccoli broken into small florets
150g gluten free pasta shapes
Handful of gluten free breadcrumbs

How to…

Put the fish fillets in a heavy bottomed pan and cover with the coconut milk.
Add the chopped vegetables, peppercorns and bay leaf.
Bring to the boil and then turn off the heat and put the lid on so the fish is poached in the milk and the flavours of the fish and vegetables infuse the milk.
Strain the milk and dispose of the vegetables.
Put the fish fillets to one side.
Cook the pasta.
Steam the broccoli and peas.
Pre-heat the oven to about 190°c / 160°c in a fan oven or gas mark 5.

Now make the Roux…
Melt the 40g of vegan spread in a pan.
Add the flour and combine and keep stirring, for a few minutes to cook the flour through.
Now start to add the milk from the fish infusion a little a time, combining with the paste completely before adding a little more.
It takes time and care, and if you get interrupted then it’s best to take the pan off the heat as if the sauce sticks to the bottom of the pan you can end up with a lumpy sauce (though if you do end up with a lumpy sauce you can pass it through a sieve).
Once it’s completely combined, keep stirring until it’s just about to start to boil. If you want to add a bit of flavour add a teaspoon of French mustard and 30g or so of cheese.

Bring it all together…
Rinse through the pasta with cold water so it doesn’t stick together.
Flake the fish carefully by hand ensuring there are no bones remaining.
Scatter the pasta, peas, broccoli and salmon carefully and evenly in a shallow dish, and pour the sauce over it.
Top with the breadcrumbs.
Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes.

And the verdict? It was a winner, of course.

*Farmed salmon are not sustainable, they are kept in cages in the sea at high stocking density, see this article from Channel 4 on Hugh’s Fish Fight for more information. If you’re buying wild salmon too, buy from sustainable stocks as some are becoming depleted. Retailers have to label which part of the world the fish comes from, so you can check it on the Marine Conservation Society’s database.

**I used Dove’s farm gluten free flour though am sure that others would work just as well.

***This is not the coconut milk in cans but the milk alternative drink which is sold in cartons and has a thinner consistency.

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