My husband and I met in Pittsburgh while attending law school. We both adore the city and the food is one of the things we miss the most. Primanti’s, pierogies, Pamela’s…oh my. One of our favorite date spots was Kaya in the Strip District. I’m not sure if I ever ordered anything other than the spectacular salmon salad on their menu. Flaky, flavorful salmon atop a light, satisfying salad combining tart apples, nutty Manchego cheese and toasty almonds. Paired with a glass (or pitcher) of sangria on the patio, it was the recipe for a perfect afternoon spent people watching. Oh, and we studied sometimes, too.
While we don’t make it to Pittsburgh very frequently anymore, I can at least revisit those lazy summer Saturday afternoons by way of this salad. I’ve added juicy blackberries and a bright honey lime dressing. Give it a try and see if it doesn’t become one of your favorites, too!
A quick note on sticking the skillet under the broiler- I like to wrap the handle of the skillet in foil before putting it in the oven. When I remove it from the oven, the foil acts as a visual reminder that the handle is HOT and also absorbs some of the heat.
Summer Salmon Salad with Blackberries and Apple
- 1 ½ lb salmon
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 lime, zested and juiced
- 7-8 cups romaine lettuce
- 1 large Granny Smith apple (toss with lemon juice if preparing salad ahead of time)
- 1 cup blackberries
- ½ cup Marcona almonds (or toasted, sliced almonds)
- 1 cup shredded Manchego cheese (you can sub in goat cheese or feta)
- Honey Lime Dressing, recipe follows
Mix honey, water and lime juice in small bowl, until combined.
Pre-heat broiler. In heavy bottomed, oven safe skillet, heat butter and olive oil over medium high heat. Pat salmon dry and season with salt and pepper. When oil is shimmering, carefully put salmon in skillet. Cook 3-4 minutes. Very carefully, so that oil does not splatter, turn salmon over and cook on other side 3-4 minutes, until salmon is cooked to your liking. I prefer my salmon well done.
Add garlic to the pan and cook until it becomes fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add honey, water and lime juice mixture and stir to loosen brown bits on the bottom of the skillet. Spoon honey mixture over salmon. Place salmon under broiler until top is browned, 1-2 minutes.
Remove salmon from oven, being careful not to burn your hand on skillet handle. Allow salmon to rest for a few minutes. Sprinkle top with lime zest. Remove salmon from pan and either cut or flake into portions.
While salmon is cooking, place lettuce, apple, blackberries, almonds and cheese into large bowl. Top with salmon and dressing.
Honey Lime Dressing
- Juice from 3 limes
- Zest of 1 lime
- 1 Tbsp honey
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- ½ Tbsp poppyseeds
Place all ingredients in mason jar or bowl. Shake or whisk until combined.