Project Veggie: Day 22 – Steelhead with Hazelnut Pesto and Lemon Potatoes

I love hazelnuts.  When I lived in the midwest I could never find them, and it was always a treat to come home to Oregon, where they are available everywhere.  Turns out in the U.S. they are only grown in Washington and Oregon, so that explains that mystery.

Pesto is one of my favorite condiments.  Basil is one of the only things I can grow well, so in the summer I grow a lot of it and fill my freezer with pesto for the winter.  Sadly, last summer was a little (a lot!) rainy here and my basil crop was too wimpy to get me through to summertime.  So I bought some yesterday so I could make pesto.  Which just gave me the opportunity to change it up a bit and see how it tasted with roasted hazelnuts.  Mmmmm.

I was in the mood for salmon.  We hadn’t had fish all week and it sounded good.  At the fish counter the salmon looked a little sad, but next to it…lovely fresh steelhead was calling out to me, and it was on sale too!  Steelhead always reminds me of salmon.  It looks a lot alike, cooks up the same way, and tastes sort of similar too, but steelhead is actually a kind of trout.  In any case, I’ve made this recipe with both fish and it’s terrific either way.

My name is April, and I’m a potatoholic. I know I’ve said this before but this is one of the best potato recipes EVER!  I always make a big batch of lemon potatoes because they are so good left over the next day, either by themselves, or scrambled with eggs, or mixed with a little mayo for a potato salad.  And they go perfectly with fish.  Or anything else for that matter.

Broiled Steelhead with Hazelnut Pesto

Broiled Steelhead with Hazelnut Pesto

1 pound steelhead (or salmon) fillet
1/2 cup basil pesto (see below for hazelnut pesto recipe or you can use store bought pesto)
salt & pepper
lemon slices
olive oil

Heat broiler on oven.  Mash pesto on top of the fish, spreading over the entire top surface of the filet.  Sprinkle with sea salt & fresh ground pepper.  Top with lemon slices and a drizzle of olive oil.   Put under the broiler for 10-12 minutes, until fish easily pulls apart with a fork in the middle.

Hazelnut Pesto

Hazelnut Pesto

1 big bunch fresh basil (I used about 2 cups)
1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts
1/4 cup fresh parmesan
salt & pepper
4 cloves garlic
1/4-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Whirl everything up in a food processor except olive oil.  Scrape down the sides.  Drizzle olive oil in with the motor running until it’s the consistency you prefer.

Lemon Potatoes - Yum!!!

Lemon Potatoes
(adapted from Moosewood Restaurant, Simple Suppers)

1-2 pounds red or yukon gold potatoes, cut into 4 or 6 pieces
Zest and juice of 1 large lemon
Salt & pepper
1-2 tbsp. capers
1/4 cup chopped black olives (optional)
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Bring a pot of water to boil over high heat.  Add the potatoes.  Cook 10-15 minutes until fork tender.  Meanwhile, zest and juice lemon into a large bowl.  Add capers and olives if using.  Drain potatoes and add to bowl.  Add sea salt and fresh ground pepper.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Toss to combine all ingredients.  Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

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