PAN-FRIED SALMON WITH CREAMY LEMON ORZO – Beautifully seasoned, tender, pan-fried salmon, nestled in a bed of creamy orzo with lemon and Parmesan. It seems like a really special dinner, yet it’s quick to prepare and all is cooked in one pan (no pre-boiling of the orzo needed).
Salmon and spice rub:
— 4 salmon fillets
— 1 Pinch salt
— 1 Pinch garlic salt
— ¼ tsp black pepper
— 1/8 tsp paprika
— ½ tsp dried parsley
— 2 tbsp olive oil
— 2 tbsp unsalted butter
— 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
— 1 cup plus 2 tbsp dried orzo
— 2 cups chicken stock
— ¼ cup double (heavy) cream
— 75 g (¾ cup) grated Parmesan
— Zest and juice of ½ a lemon
— ¼ tsp salt
— ½ tsp black pepper
— Small bunch of fresh parsley, finely chopped
— Lemon wedges
— Black pepper
Place the salmon fillets on a plate.
Mix together the salt, garlic salt, pepper, paprika and dried parsley. Sprinkle onto the top of the salmon and pat it down, so it sticks.
Heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan (skillet), over a medium-high heat.
Add the salmon fillets, skin-side-up (so the part coated with the spice mix is in the oil).
Cook for 3-4 minutes, until the salmon is golden brown, then remove the salmon from the pan and place on a plate, skin-side-down (we’ll continue cooking it shortly).
Turn the heat down to medium and add the garlic to the pan. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly, so the garlic doesn’t burn.
Add the dried orzo to the pan, stir with the garlic, then add the chicken stock and stir again.
Nestle the salmon fillets into the orzo, skin-side down.
Turn the heat back up to medium-high and bring to the boil, then turn the heat down and simmer for 8-9 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the orzo is al dente (cooked, but with a little bite). You’ll need to move the salmon with a set of tongs to stir the orzo underneath, so it doesn’t stick to the pan.
Add the cream, Parmesan, lemon zest and juice, salt and pepper to the orzo and stir together.
Turn off the heat, sprinkle on the chopped parsley and a little black pepper. Arrange the lemon wedges in the pan, then serve.