Citrus Salmon over Watercress

As I am sitting here about to start writing, my husband is behind me, singing, “Dinner was so good. It was so de-li-cious. Followed by that cookie that was also delicious…”

I wish I could tell you what tune he is singing it to in order to help you envision it…but I do not recognize any song I have ever heard.

The point is, dinner was thoroughly enjoyed.  Therefore, you should try making this dinner and see if you catch your dining partner(s) singing to themselves afterward.

Let me also point out that this is the perfect dinner to make when you have a hectic day.

I know.  You are saying, ‘Really, Annie?  Salmon over Watercress is the perfect dinner to make on a hectic day?! Do I look like Martha Friggin’ Stewart to you?’

But seriously. It is.

Today it was hailing. Hailing. I’m not talking cabs.  I’m talking little shards and balls of ice pelting us throughout the day.  Fun fun fun.

Also, my younger son went through THREE outfits. (And not because he is a diva…more because there were multiple diaper malfunctions.  I guess we’ve got to pay at some point for going with Kirkland.)  And my older son managed to fall out of the car flat on his face on the dirty, wet sidewalk…in the hail…while I was holding Xavi and two big bags of groceries.

He is okay. Minus the fact that he suffered his first bloody nose.  And Lord only knows what kind of nasty, wet sidewalk grossness came in contact with his little face.

Clearly it wasn’t the best or easiest of days.

So, here is where dinner actually was easy. Because the main part of this recipe can be (and is actually supposed to be) done ahead of time.  Personally, I actually have a spare minute to do something in the morning or mid-day (or the night before for those who work outside of the house all day).  It’s the two hours before dinner time that are always the most packed with picking up kids, seeing clients, returning from classes, etc.  So, it was nice to do the main part of this dish ahead of time.  And by main, I mean putting fish in a dish and leaving it the oven for 15 minutes. Like I said, this is a great meal for a hectic day.

I should also note, that my husband came home really late tonight, so I actually fed the boys mac n’ cheese with some salmon, rather than whip up the full recipe twice.  I believe whole heartedly in feeding kids the same thing we are eating…for the most part.  However, sometimes it is necessary to cave to the mac n’ cheese.

At least it was the $1.29 organic mac n’ cheese from Trader Joe’s.  That makes it a little better.  Or so I tell myself.

Anyway, please enjoy this recipe responsibly.  Like I said, you could have your dining partners singing afterward and I wouldn’t want you to take advantage of that in any way.

Citrus Salmon over Watercress:

Ingredients: (The salmon served 4, and the rest served 2…so, I’m, uh, leaving that math up to you.  I’m a language teacher.  Not math.)

Salmon ~ about 1.5 lbs

Bay leaves ~ 2

Watercress ~ 1 bunch

Pink Grapefruit ~ 1

Cucumber ~ 1

Rice Vinegar ~ 1/4 cup

Olive oil ~ 1/4 cup

Sugar ~ 1 tbsp

Salt ~ 1/2 tsp

Cooked rice ~ 2 cups (optional)

To make:

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.

Place the salmon in a glass baking dish and fill it with water half way up the side of the salmon.  Add two bay leaves.

Cook at 375 degrees for 15 minutes, or until it is opaque and flakey.

Since I ‘misplaced’ my camera charger and am back to iphone photos, I decided I at least better offer you some exciting, action shots…like this one of the fish cooking in the water in the oven.  Seriously, Calm. Down.

Let it cool.

While it is cooking, segment a grapefruit.

There is something very satisfying about cutting the outer skin off of a grapefruit.  I mean, don’t lump me with Dexter or anything, but it is definitely satisfying.

Cut out the segments over a bowl so that all juice falls into the bowl.  Also squeeze all juice left in the pieces of cut-off rind into the bowl.  Then place the actual segments of grapefruit in a separate bowl.

In the bowl of grapefruit juice, whisk in the rice vinegar, olive oil, sugar and salt.

Once the fish has cooled a little, put it in a Ziploc bag, along with the vinaigrette you just made – except leave one tablespoon of the vinaigrette in the bowl.

Leave the fish in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

Thinly slice the cucumber and wash the watercress.

When ready to serve, add the watercress, cucumber and grapefruit segments to the left over tablespoon of vinaigrette and toss.

Why, yes, I do want to get lost in you, you enchanting-looking forest.

Put it on a plate and place the salmon on top (after discarding the marinating liquid).

And, uh, just wait for the singing.

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15 Responses to Citrus Salmon over Watercress

  1. Nina says:

    holy cow. first of all, i am one of those trader joe mac and cheese kind of mom–but, i am not proud of this. i am so motivated by your beautiful and yummy looking dishes. i am totally making this dish. thank you SO much for making dinner time look fun, easy and delish! now let’s hope i can do it.

  2. Um, how about thank YOU for reading, commenting mere moments after I posted it and being so complimentary!

    This was seriously super easy. And I feel full, but am pretty sure I will weigh a pound less in the morning.

    Which is why the boys HAD to have some mac n’ cheese….they can not afford to weigh a pound less! 😉

    Please let me know how it goes!

  3. Monica says:

    dayum that looks deeelicious!!

    Ps even nutrition counselors purchase organic trader joes Mac and cheese. It’s about balance and survival and–hi, your kids eat salmon! Bravo 🙂

  4. It WAS delicious! (If I do say so myself)

    So happy to hear even YOU feed your kids mac n’ cheese sometimes because I totally know they are also eating like, sea kelp and roasted fava bean salad, or something every day at lunch when Carlitos is eating peanut butter and jelly. 😉

    And yes, they both love salmon. I swear salmon skin is one of Carlitos’ favorite foods. (It used to definitely be THE favorite…until he discovered ice-cream and cookies.)

  5. this looks wonderful…but more importantly…it looks doable!

    i get nervous every time i step foot in the kitchen. i always manage to burn something or break something. but, i think i can do this one.=)

    thanks for the delish idea. actually, my family thanks you more.

  6. !Si se puede!

    Nothing to burn (hard to burn things submerged in water) and nothing to break…except the stems off of the watercress.

    I think you are good to go! And you probably have better access to good salmon over there than we do here! 🙂

  7. Monica says:

    Well, both kids do love to snack on seaweed (nori) and Addie loves to sprinkle kelp granules on her eggs, but now I’m just showing off 😉 Trust me that they both don’t eat EVERYthing.

  8. autumn says:

    the tofu and bok choy was a total sucess (i ate all 4 servings myself) so i am 100% trying this one!

  9. autumn says:

    hopefully the recipe police are still on break bc i used talapia instead of salmon and added fresh gound pepper and it was equally amaze!

  10. RealMommyChron says:

    Monica- Show OFF!!!
    (Totally buying some nori)

  11. RealMommyChron says:


    That sounds fabulous! I’m going to try making it again with a white fish. I bet Ono would be great in this….hmmmm….

    Glad you enjoyed it!!!

  12. Emily Richard says:

    Wow Annie…you are truly an amazing cook. This is something I think I could handle making. I still think you should write a cookbook for college students. That would be great for me.

  13. Yes, this is totally something you could make while at college. The boy will be impressed!

    And you have me thinking about the cookbook, my dear…

  14. Nina says:

    so as i revisit this recipe i am also interested in the cookie…did you make it as well? if so, we need more details!

  15. Uh, I’m excited you are ‘revisiting’ it! How cool is that?! 😉
    Yes, Carlitos Eli and I may have made some oatmeal raisin cookies from scratch that day…

    Very basic, though. I will make them again soon (since I am off chocolate until Easter) and will post recipe and photos.

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