What makes this dish not a recipe in the strict sense of the term is, I don’t go and make two quarts of chutney just so I can use some of it to make a salmon dish. Rather, apples being plentiful in the fall, I make a large batch of chutney, confident I will find great uses for it. For example, this past week, Rosh Hashanah lasting three whole days, I was reluctant to make all of Shabbos food at the same time I made the food for the two first days, especially fish. So I remembered my magic solution: As always, I had my apple chutney on hand. I mixed some with a little olive oil, smeared the mixture on a side of salmon, and roasted it at very high temperature. It was delicious, and easy as 1-2-3! Having some good homemade condiments on hand is something I’m very big on: . These condiments and preserves are so fabulous and so easy to prepare the dish you use them on hardly needs any other adorning: Totally plain poached chicken breasts or baked fish or tofu, for example, will find their rightful place in the gastronomic world wearing a different but very becoming hat each time you decide to top them with one of the many foolproof preparations I have included in my cookbooks.
Apple Chutney Roasted Salmon
- Cooking and Prep: 1 h 15 m
- Serves: 4
Apple Raisin Chutney
For the Apple Raisin Chutney
Chutneys, from the Hindi “to be licked” (an inspired derivation, if you have ever tasted a good one), are relishes that originated in India as a way of preserving fruits and vegetables. Sweet, tart, chunky and with a bit of fire, a good chutney is complex and intriguing, as well as incredibly versatile. Serve chutneys with curries, roasts or cold cuts. Mix them with a little honey and add to fruit salads. Stir into low-fat mayonnaise or creamed tofu and serve as a dip. Incorporate it in recipes, as I do here, with salmon or meatballs. Chutney preparation is always based on the same principle: Fruits and/or vegetables are simmered in a hot liquid containing vinegar, sugar and spices until the mixture is reduced and thickened. Chutney is easy to make and to modify. After a few batches, you will learn to adjust the amounts of spices to your own taste.
Put the mustard seeds, sugar, vinegar, tomatoes, salt, cayenne, turmeric, cardamom, curry and 2 and 1/2 cups water in a heavy pot, and bring to a boil.
Coarsely grind the raisins, apples, onions, celery and ginger in the food processor, using the pulse button.
Add the ground mixture to the boiling liquid, and bring to a boil again. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for about 30 minutes. The mixture will thicken as it cools.
Cool completely before storing in clean wide-mouth glass jars. Store refrigerated.
For the Salmon
Use just one cup of the chutney in this salmon. Reserve the rest for another delicious use.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix the chutney and the oil and smear the salmon all over with the mixture. Place the salmon in a baking pan just large enough to fit it snugly. (If it’s easier to half the fillet to fit it more easily in the pan, go ahead and halve it.)
Bake 25 minutes.
Serve hot or at room temperature.