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Lerato’s recipes for the season of love

(Baked Salmon, Pea & Green Pepper Puree, Braised Spinach with Lemon, Turmeric & scotch Bonnet Oil)

This season of love, a great way to show how much you care is by cooking a spectacular meal, and I have created a wonderfully seductive recipe that will impress your love interest. This recipe is also a great treat for your spouse, partner, family, friends or just for you!
For 2 loving tummies
Preparation time: 1 hour
Ingredients
For the lemon, turmeric & scotch bonnet oil
6 tbsp. olive oil
Zest of one lemon
Juice of half a lemon
½ tsp turmeric
1 scotch bonnet, cut into skin
Pinch of salt

For the baked salmon
2 x 175g Salmon fillets
½ tsp of salt
½ freshly ground alligator pepper or grains of paradise
1 table spoon of olive oil

For the peas & green pepper puree
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large green pepper, cleaned, destalked and deseeded
300g / 2 cup fresh or frozen green peas
1 vegetable or chicken stock cube
2 sprigs of fresh thyme / 1 tsp of dried thyme
1 tsp of sea salt
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp chilli powder

For the braised spinach
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 red onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
225g / 1 cup spinach, washed, destemmed, roughly chopped
½ tsp chilli powder
½ tsp sea salt

Let’s get cooking!
1. Pour 6 tablespoons of olive oil into a small frying pan or shallow pot. Place on low heat, add the zest of a lemon, the juice of half a lemon, turmeric, scotch bonnet and salt. Stir, press onto the scotch bonnet to release its oils and leave to heat gently. After 10 minutes take off the heat and set aside. The oils from the lemon zests and scotch bonnet will continue to infuse into the oil.

2. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6 and prepare a baking dish with foil or greaseproof baking paper. Clean the salmon fillets and dry with a kitchen towel. Place into the baking tray. Season both fillets with salt and alligator pepper (available in West Africa) or grains of paradise (which is more widely available outside West Africa). Crush the pods with a pestle and mortar or a spice mill. Drizzle the salmon fillets with olive oil and bake for 15 minutes in the middle of the oven. Once cooked, cover the salmon with foil to keep it warm and set aside.

3. Prepare another baking dish with foil or grease proof baking paper and place your cut green peppers into it. Drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil and roast in the oven for 15 minutes, alongside the salmon. Once cooked, set aside.

4. For the peas, fill half of a small pot with boiling water, add the green peas, crumbled stock cube, thyme and salt. Cook on high heat. After 15 minutes drain the peas, remove the thyme stalks but save the liquid. Into a blender, add the cooked peas, roasted green pepper, salt, black pepper, chilli powder and the remaining table spoon of olive oil. Add two tablespoons of the pea stock and blend together until smooth. If the puree is too stiff, add a table spoon of the pea stock until you achieved a smooth but thick consistency.

5. Finally, to braise the spinach, place a wide pan onto medium heat, add one tablespoon of olive oil. Once hot, add the sliced onions and chopped garlic. Stir and allow to cook for 5 minutes. Add the washed and chopped spinach, chilli powder and salt, stir and leave to braise for another 5 minutes.

6. Now plate your pea and pepper puree first, place the braised spinach on top of the peas, and then the salmon on top of the spinach. Onto the salon and around the plate, drizzle the lemon, turmeric and scotch bonnet oil. Serve with your favourite sides or a fresh salad.

After all this effort, how can anyone resist you? Enjoy this season of love!

Let me know how you get on with this recipe and follow me for more ideas on – Instagram @lerato_tomato; Twitter @leratotomato; Facebook: leratolovesfood


In this article:
Lerato Umah-Shaylor


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