Losing Aunt Lois was a heart-breaking event that capped off a pretty lousy year. Having to break the news to my ailing mom on Christmas Eve was a challenge which I hoped I handled well (as well as one can, under those circumstances), but it was not a challenge I wanted.
Our Christmas Eve was bittersweet as we reminisced about Aunt Lois while arranging gifts on the tree, listening to Christmas carols, watching holiday films, and other pleasant, festive holiday distractions. I had planned a lovely, but low key, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day for us. On Christmas Day, the kids and grandkids would be joining us later in the afternoon (I’d picked up a rib roast for that occasion), but Christmas Eve would just be hubby, Mom, and me. I wanted something easy, but also something special — I wanted us to have an Enchanted Evening. 🙂 (And heaven knows we all deserved one.) I happily wiled away time Googling and pondering recipes. Then my menu came together — something new that I’d never tried before (although when has that stopped me? LOL): Pecan Crusted Salmon and Cheesy Rice with Broccoli.
When it came time for supper, I poured Mom and me both some wine. Mom and hubby both asked what we were having. “It’s a surprise,” I said, “Something we’ve never had before!” Hubby, eyeing the salmon fillets thawing in the sink, said, “Salmon? We’ve had that before!” To which I replied “Not the way we’re having it tonight!”
After our supper, Mom commented that were it not for the sad news we’d gotten casting a pall over things, it would have been absolutely perfect and wonderfully festive.
This menu, although easy, will make any evening enchanted, making it perfect for a holiday, date night, or other festive or celebratory occasion. 🙂 The recipe, as written, serve four, but the recipe can be adjusted up or down. You can substitute another medium-textured fish, such as tilapia, for the salmon, if you prefer.
It smells, tastes, and looks yummy!
Pecan-Crusted Salmon (Serves 4)
- 1 pound boneless, skinless salmon, cut into 4 serving pieces
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
- approximately 1/4 cup bread crumbs (soft or dry will work)
- Parsley to taste (dried or minced fresh)
- 1 egg
- Splash of milk
- Grated peel from one lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste (I used a sprinkling of sea salt and coarse ground pepper)
- Couple tablespoons of oil or mix of oil and butter
NOTE: You can substitute another medium-textured fish, such as tilapia, for the salmon if you wish.
- Preheat oven to 425F . About halfway through the preheating time, add oil or butter and oil in a 13″x9″ pan and place in oven to preheat pan and oil or oil/butter combo.
- In a shallow dish, mix together pecans, bread crumbs, parsley, and lemon zest.
- In another shallow dish, mix together egg and milk.
- Season salmon to taste with salt and pepper. Coat salmon in egg mixture, then in pecan/bread crumb mixture, pressing in the pecans as needed.
- Place in preheated pan and bake (uncovered) for 15 to 20 minutes, until fillets are done. (If desired, you can GENTLY turn the fillets about halfway through). Let rest in a warm place for 5 or 10 minutes before serving.
- Sprinkle with lemon juice before serving, if desired.
- Refrigerate leftovers.
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