Salmon for Christmas Eve dinner? I think so

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 21, 2013

It is time to start preparing for the big day and deciding what to cook. Every year, I ponder what I can do that is different, but seem to always come back to a pork or beef roast or perhaps ham for my Christmas Day meal. I want to do a special dinner for Christmas Eve this year since it is my anniversary. We always get home late from the Christmas Eve service, so I decided I could have a good meal if I worked ahead. Since I sing in the choir on Christmas Eve, we always eat afterward. Southern Living had a menu that seemed to be just perfect. A light tomato bisque that can be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator for four days is a simple first course. The salmon dish can be cooked in just a few minutes. So here is my 2013 Christmas Eve meal, even if it is eaten at midnight. I could have a little champagne before the meal!

Merry Christmas to you all!

Taken from Southern Living December 2013 issue.


Serves 4

3 (14.5oz.) cans good quality diced tomatoes

2 large onions, diced (about 2 cups)

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 bay leaves

4 Tbsp. tomato paste

3 Tbsp. fresh brewed coffee

1 Tbsp. jarred beef soup base

1 tsp. jarred chicken soup base

2 fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs

1 ½ tsp. dried thyme

½ cup heavy cream

2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

1 ½ tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. black pepper

Garnishes: whipped cream, golden caviar, fresh parsley or chive sprigs

Bring first 10 ingredients and 5 cups water to a boil in a large stockpot over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-high; simmer, stirring occasionally, 20 minutes or until reduced by one-fourth. Cool 15 minutes.

Process with a blender until smooth. Stir in cream and next three ingredients. Garnish as desired. Serve immediately.

Note: Refrigerate in an airtight container up to four days, or freeze up to eight weeks. Reheat over medium heat until soup simmers. Do not boil.



This salmon dish is really delicious. I did a trial run to see how it would go and found it so easy and wonderful. A few simple side dishes of perhaps potatoes and green beans or broccoli would be just perfect with this dish. A simple dessert would be fine also.

This makes 10-12 servings but I bought a wild caught salmon and only used a pound. It was good for two meals. It may be expensive, but it does go a long way. Shorten the cooking time for just one pound.

1 ½ cups pecan halves

6 Tbsp. butter, melted

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 ½ tsp. dried dill weed

1 (3-3 ½ lb.) boneless, skinless side of salmon

1 ¼ tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Parchment paper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pulse first four ingredients in a food processor five or six times or until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Sprinkle salmon with salt and pepper; place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread pecan mixture over salmon. Bake 18-20 minutes or just until salmon flakes with a fork. And there you have it.