Monday, August 14, 2017


Salmon and Freekeh Salad with Sweet Peppers, Dates and Olives

An ongoing series of Blue Apron Recipes.  This one can be found here.

Cooking time: 50 to 60 minutes
Serves: 2
Calorie count per serving: 810

2 skin-on Salmon Filets
3/4 cup Cracked Freekeh
4 ozs. Sweet Peppers
2 cloves Garlic
4 ozs. fresh Spinach
1 Lemon
1 bunch of Oregano
1 bunch of Parsley
2 tablespoons of Roasted Almonds
1 oz. Castelvetrano Olives
1 oz. dried Medjool Dates
1 tablespoon of Salmon Spice Blend (Sumac and Sesame Seeds)

Cook the freekeh:

Heat a medium pot of salted water to boiling on high.  Once boiling add the freekeh and cook, uncovered, 23 to 25 minutes, or until tender. Drain thoroughly and return to the pot.  Set aside in a warm place.

Prepare the ingredients:

While the freekeh cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce.

Finely chop the parsley leaves and steams. Transfer to a bowl.

Pick the oregano leaves off the steams; discard the stems and finely chop the leaves.  Transfer to the bowl of parsley.

Quarter and deseed the lemon.

Peel and finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press).

Cut off and discard the pepper stems; halve lengthwise, then remove and discard the ribs and seeds.  Cut the peppers crosswise into 1/4 inch thick pieces.

Using the flat side of your knife, smash the olives; remove and discard the pits, then roughly chop.

Pit and roughly chop the dates.

Make the sesame salsa verde:

While the freekeh continues to cook, to the bowl of parsley and oregano, add the spice blend, the juice of 2 lemon wedges, up to half the garlic and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cook the vegetables:

While the freekeh continues to cook, in a medium pan (nonstick if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot.

Add the peppers and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned and softened.

Add the spinach and remaining garlic; season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until the spinach is wilted. Turn off the heat and stir in the juice of 1 lemon wedge.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer to the pot of cooked freekeh.

Wipe out the pan.

Cook the salmon:

Pat the salmon filets dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper on both sides.

In the same pan heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot.

Add the seasoned filets, skinless side down.  Cook 4 to 5 minutes on the first side, or until lightly browned.  Flip and cook 1 to 2 minutes or until lightly browned and cooked to your desired degree of doneness.  Turn off the heat.

Finish the freekeh and plate your dish:

While the salmon cooks, to the pot of cooked freekeh and vegetables, add the olives, dates, almonds, the juice of the remaining lemon wedge, and a drizzle of olive oil. Stir to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste.


There was a mixed reaction to this dish.  Gregg doesn't really like salmon but I was impressed he at least tried it. He says he finds it interesting because he likes every other type of fish.  I have him to thank for encouraging me to broaden my taste in seafood. This salmon was plainly cooked with only salt and pepper to season.  I like salmon any which way so no problem, but I think next time we will be getting another type of fish to cook along with the filet of salmon for me.  

The freekah was new to both of us.  I enjoyed it, especially as it was mixed with many interesting ingredients, and I found it quite tasty.  

We both added a few dashes of Sciracha to the Freekah, which gave it a little extra zip. I was careful how much I added as I am not much of a hot sauce person.  We both enjoyed the added chopped olives and dates.  Gregg also added Teryaki Sauce.   

It wasn't called for but we chopped up the almonds to disperse it better throughout.

The salsa verde, I liked it more and Gregg thought it was okay, but he didn't like the addition of the oregano.  We could leave that out next time.

It's important for us to note how much we enjoy each meal.  The previous one he liked a lot and I didn't, though for the life of me I can't remember what it was now.  

I think we have to be careful on the cooking time of the salmon as I felt the four minutes made it a tad overdone.  

Gregg decided to forego the salmon.  After trying a small piece it was wrapped up and refrigerated and I ate it for lunch the next day.  

I guess you could say one thumb's up and one thumb's down on this dish.  Most of the time our liking for certain foods is very similar, but there are also areas where our tastes differ, as with this dish.  

I was surprised to see how high the calorie count was in one servings, 850 calories, but will factor that in and we can go carefully the rest of the day. 

I am not familiar with Sumac (part of the spice blend for the Salsa Verde) and looked it up.  If you go to this link you can find that information.  It says a good substitute for this spice is lemon zest combined with a little salt.

I will make this again but would put a different fish on the shopping list.


  1. I am impressed at how varied Blue Apron's recipes are.
    My partner loves suman and uses it as a rub on chicken often.

    1. It is impressive EC. I will have to look for this spice next time I go to the store.

  2. Freekeh! Never heard of it. Even the spell checker wants me to change it to Freehold. I do love salmon!!

    1. A first for us too and I can understand the spell checker having a hard time :) Thanks Ginny' me too :)

  3. I'm off salmon right now but there are times when I love it. Crazy, huh?
    Well, the recipe looks interesting (looks being half the battle) but I have to check on Freekeh. It's something I've never heard of.

    1. I know the feeling Valerie, there are times I am the same with certain foods. I would be curious if yo have freekeh in your stores. I have never noticed it here but maybe it is just a case of me overlooking it.

  4. Hello, I love salmon. The meal looks delicious. I have never heard of freekah? It looks like rice? Thanks for sharing. Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

    1. Thank you Eileen and the freekeh seems new to several of us. I think it is more of a grain. I will have to look it up again. Happy week to you too :)

  5. It looks so good, sorry hubby didn't like the salmon.

  6. I am off to find out what freekeh is and if I want some of it.

  7. This looks delicious, and fit for a king, Denise! And I love salmon!

  8. Hi Denise, some years ago I was a very keen Salmon fisherman and spent many happy hours casting my flies at these wonderful fish, but invariably put them back as I cannot stand the taste. Always kept the odd one for a friend. All the best, John

    1. And I bet that friend appreciated your gift very much John. I can just imagine you castling on the river, a lovely scene in my mind :) All the best to you too, Denise :)

  9. Replies
    1. Glad you like the look of it Gosia, thank you :)

  10. I suppose one could substitute lamb or chicken for the salmon.

    1. We have thought of substituting chicken next time. It would be a great meal to change it to your own taste.

  11. It looks delicious but I do like my salmon underdone, yes 4 minutes is way too long for me. Thanks for sharing this recipe. Take care Diane

    1. That's very interesting Diane, I will be lessening the time on each side next time.

  12. Thankfully, we both enjoy salmon, but have to wait for a good sale at the local market. That's when we usually stock up on enough for 2 meals. And, now I know what freekah is because I looked it up!

    1. It's always great to find those good deals. I honestly did not know what Freekeh was before this. One of the reasons I love these meals. We are trying so many different foods.

  13. had never heard of freekah -- there are so many 'new' (to us) grains around now.... I'm impressed that Blue Apron gives you these interesting new foods to try!

    1. Thanks Sallie and I agree, several of those new things have turned up in my Blue Apron box. It has been very eye opening.

  14. It's always nice to try out new recipes.
    I love salmon and spinach, but not had Freekeh.

    Thanks for sharing this recipe Denise.

    All the best Jan

    1. Hope you try it soon, if it's available :)


I thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I enjoy reading them very much and always try to return a visit. As I do monitor comments it may take a while for them to appear, even quite late depending on what is going on and how much time I am able to spend on the computer.

Also, there are times when I delete by mistake, so if something you have written to me is gone, it's usually because my fingers have pushed the wrong button!