Monday, June 13, 2016

Heart healthy meals need not be boring

"No red meat" was what the stroke specialist ordered. Stick mostly to fish, chicken and turkey -- the white meat, not the dark. Smoked salmon is on the approved list.

So for tonight's dinner, I served smoked salmon on a Montreal-style bagel. My wife hates fish, or so she claims, but she loved tonight's dinner. The secret: high quality fish.

The bagel came from Farm Boy on Beaverbrook Avenue just off Wonderland Road North. This grocery brings Kettleman's wood-fired bagels in from Ottawa. These bagels are made in the traditional Montreal bagel manner and they are delicious. These are not just puffy, doughnut-shaped hunks of bread. These  bagels are slightly sweet, dense and chewy.

The smoked salmon came from Remark on Hyde Park just south of Oxford St. W. Although it was frozen, I thawed it carefully in cold water. There was too much fish for two simple sandwiches, so I cut the salmon in half while still frozen and placed half in a zip-lock plastic lunch bag to thaw. The rest I returned to the fridge for later. When thawed, I squeezed a little fresh lemon juice over the salmon.

The fresh dill also came from Remark. I mixed a tablespoon of finely chopped dill into 60 grams of light cream cheese. I also mixed in some finely chopped red onion.

To assemble, I spread a quarter of the cheese mixture on each bagel half. Next, I placed a very thin slice of red onion on each half bagel and placed half the salmon, about 50 grams, on two of the bagel halves. I sprinkled the capers over the salmon, dusted all with a little coarse pepper (optional) and finished by placing the remaining bagel halves over the salmon.

Since asparagus is still in season, I served fresh, steamed asparagus as the vegetable. You can use butter on your vegetables if you like, I must use non-hydrogenated margarine. I choose Becel with olive oil. As there was still juice in the lemon, I squeezed some lemon juice onto both my wife's and my asparagus.

I should mention the restaurant that inspired this meal: Little Red's in St. Marys. Little Red's Pub and Eatery is the latest restaurant from the team of chef Chris Woolf and his wife Mary. Chris is simply an amazing chef and his wife is a delightful hostess. Everything they serve  is made from seasonal, and mostly local, ingredients. The pub is a little gem, a real delight. We'll be going there again for lunch before the summer is over. Click on the link and check out their Web page.

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