Tuesday, September 24, 2013

# Paleo # Post

Mahi Mahi-Spinach Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing and Candied Cashews

It's Too Yummy Tuesday!

On select Tuesdays I share delicious recipes either inspired by my books or that are just plain delicious!

I recently had a dish similar to this while dining out at Islamorada Fish Company. I was so intrigued I wanted to experiment with some variations (a different blend of greens, dressing, and fruit). Since the dressing and toppings are all cooked as well as the fish, this involves a little more doing than your average salad. But boy, are the results worth it!

Mahi Mahi-Spinach Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing and Candied Cashews

For the salad:
1 package (or 2 bunches, washed) organic baby spinach leaves
1 handful crumbled feta cheese (strict Paleo foodies may omit this, or opt for a raw, grass-fed, organic variety of crumbly cheese where available)
½ cup dried cranberries (or grapes cut in half for those avoiding dried fruits)

For the dressing:
4 slices bacon, chopped fine (I like uncured/nitrite-free cherry wood bacon)
1Tbsp reserved bacon fat
½ red onion, sliced thin
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1Tbsp raw wild honey
1Tbsp citrus juice (lemon, lime, or orange)

For the nut salad topping:
½ cup cashews, chopped fine (a quick pulse in the grinder or processor helps)
½ Tbsp coconut oil (or your preferred oil)
1 Tbsp raw honey, coconut sugar, or maple syrup

For the mahi mahi:
2 mahi-mahi fillets
A squeeze or two of fresh lemon, lime, or orange juice (whatever you use for the dressing)
Salt/pepper to taste
Garlic powder to taste
½ tsp smoked paprika (or regular if that’s all you have)
1Tbsp extra virgin olive oil


Directions
Put spinach leaves in a large bowl. Top with feta, if using, and cranberries or grapes. Start preparing the dressing: Cook bacon over medium heat until fairly crisp. While that is cooking, heat coconut oil in small skillet and add cashews. Cook over medium to medium-high heat 1 minute, stirring to coat with oil. Drizzle/sprinkle evenly with honey, sugar, or syrup and continue to cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Meanwhile, when bacon is done cooking, remove with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Pour all but 1Tbsp fat/drippings from skillet. Sautee onions in reserved fat until softening, 2-3 minutes. Add vinegar, honey, and citrus juice and stir well, scraping browned bits from bottom of pan. Let reduce for a minute or two and then remove from heat. Pour over salad. Top with nuts.

For mahi mahi, squeeze small amount of citrus juice over each fillet. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic to taste; evenly sprinkle with paprika. Cook in hot oil in skillet or on indoor grill pan 5-10 minutes per side until fish flakes with a fork. Serve alongside or on top of salad.


Serves 2

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J. Rose Allister is the author of more than twenty-five books, primarily romance and erotic romance. A former editor and submissions director, she now works as a mild-mannered hospital secretary by day, naughty writer by night. Connect with her on Twitter or Goodreads. She loves talking to people!

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