Try fresh, easy herb crusted salmon for dinner

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We are over halfway through the year 2019 and my master bedroom is still not repainted. Currently, there are 13 painted two-foot by two-foot swatches in various paint colors on three of the four walls, and they have been there since March. I feel like I should explain myself.

Remember back at the beginning of the year I decided to reconfigure and simplify the master bedroom closet? The weekend project turned into a six-week ordeal with a closet kit snafu and home improvement store order mix-up. But the closet got finished. And it’s wonderful, by the way.

But you know what happens when you do one renovation, right? Have you read the popular children’s book, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie?” It is a charmingly, illustrated circular story where a boy gives a mouse a cookie and finds himself on a slippery slope.

The mouse then asks for a glass of milk. Subsequent requests then include a straw, a mirror (to check for a milk mustache), nail scissors (to trim his fur in the mirror) and a broom (to sweep up the fur trimmings).

Next thing you know, the mouse requests to take a nap, have a story read to him, draws a picture and hangs his drawing on the fridge door. Looking at the fridge, the mouse realizes he is thirsty and asks for a glass of milk. And circles back to wanting another cookie to go with it.

So, dear reader, the closet was my cookie. And I’m now on a quest to re-paint and re-decorate the bedroom attached to the closet. But choosing paint colors is where the slippery slope has stopped for several months. Choosing paint color is almost as painful as shopping for a swimsuit.

Warm or cool undertone? Bold or neutral? Light and bright or dark and cozy? Matte finish or high gloss? And dang it all, I still need to decide about the ceiling color. It’s enough to drive a girl to start day-drinking.

Between the painted strips of colors, a few distracting mini-vacay trips and a somehow busy summer schedule, I have finally settled on a hue.

Thankfully, I have a talented decorator friend who has held my hand through the process and cheered me on. And I have an incredibly patient husband who doesn’t mind the crazy multi-color paint samples.

The next few weeks will be a prepping, patching, painting circus (with another East Coast trip thrown in for good measure), but I’m looking forward to finally getting the master bedroom done. Are you wondering about the color I chose? Navy. Yes, really!

Meanwhile, in the kitchen, I’m concentrating on fresh, easy and simple meals. If you will recall, my goal this year is to incorporate five-ingredient dishes into my weekly menu plans.

This week’s recipe is adapted from one by Food Network’s Claire Robinson. She used to host a show called Five Ingredient Fix where each recipe had, you guessed it, just five ingredients. I couldn’t find fresh tarragon in our local grocery stores, so I substituted Italian parsley and it worked out great.

Herb crusted salmon is a wonderful source of protein that makes for a light but filling summertime dinner when paired with crunchy coleslaw and fresh corn. Need a wine pairing?

A crisp white wine or champagne would be my choice. And maybe a cookie or two for dessert.

Photo by Betty Williams

Herb Crusted Salmon

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh tarragon leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs or panko
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • 4 to 6 center-cut salmon fillets

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick spray. Stir together the tarragon, dill, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter to the breadcrumb mixture and stir until it has the consistency of wet sand. Pat the salmon dry with paper towels. Top each fillet with the buttery breadcrumb mixture, lightly pressing to help the mixture adhere to fillets. Put the pan in the oven and bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Remove from oven and serve immediately.

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