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Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon

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Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon Recipe

Introduction

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Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon is a delectable dish that combines the creamy richness of corn-infused orzo with the flavorful tenderness of perfectly cooked salmon. This recipe is ideal for those who enjoy a blend of hearty pasta, fresh seafood, and comforting, creamy textures. Each bite is a delightful fusion of flavors that makes for a satisfying and elegant meal, suitable for both family dinners and special occasions.

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Ingredients

For the Salmon:

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  • 4 salmon fillets (about 6 oz each)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lemon (sliced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

For the Creamed Corn Orzo:

  • 1 cup orzo pasta
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley (chopped, for garnish)

Instructions

Preparing the Salmon

1. Season the Salmon:

  • Start by patting the salmon fillets dry with paper towels. This step ensures that the salmon will sear properly and achieve a nice, crispy exterior.
  • Season both sides of each fillet generously with salt, pepper, and dried thyme. The thyme adds a subtle herbaceous note that complements the richness of the salmon.

2. Sear the Salmon:

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Make sure the skillet is hot before adding the salmon to get a good sear.
  • Place the salmon fillets in the skillet, skin-side down if they have skin. Sear them for about 4-5 minutes without moving them. This helps to develop a crispy skin and a flavorful crust.
  • Carefully flip the fillets using a spatula and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes on the other side. The salmon should be cooked through and flake easily with a fork.
  • Remove the salmon from the skillet and set aside on a plate. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm while you prepare the orzo.

3. Prepare the Lemon-Garlic Topping:

  • In the same skillet, add the minced garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Be careful not to burn the garlic, as it can become bitter.
  • Add lemon slices to the skillet and cook for about 1 minute on each side until they start to caramelize and release their juices.
  • Spoon the lemon-garlic mixture over the cooked salmon fillets. This topping adds a bright, zesty flavor that cuts through the richness of the salmon.

Preparing the Creamed Corn Orzo

1. Cook the Orzo:

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. The salted water ensures that the orzo is well-seasoned from the inside out.
  • Add the orzo pasta and cook according to the package instructions until al dente, usually about 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  • Drain the orzo and set aside. Drizzle with a little olive oil to keep it from clumping together while you prepare the rest of the dish.

2. Sauté the Vegetables:

  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. The combination of oil and butter provides a rich base for sautéing the vegetables.
  • Add the chopped onion and cook until it becomes translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent the onion from browning.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Garlic should be cooked gently to release its flavor without burning.

3. Add the Corn:

  • Stir in the corn kernels and cook for about 3-4 minutes until they are tender and slightly golden. If using frozen corn, ensure it is thawed and drained before adding to the skillet.
  • Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste. This helps to build layers of flavor in the dish.

4. Create the Cream Sauce:

  • Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth and bring the mixture to a simmer. The broth adds depth and enhances the overall flavor of the dish.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and stir in the heavy cream. Cook the mixture for about 5 minutes until it thickens slightly. The cream adds a luxurious texture and richness to the sauce.
  • Add the grated Parmesan cheese and stir until melted and well combined. The cheese not only thickens the sauce but also adds a nutty, savory element.

5. Combine with Orzo:

  • Add the cooked orzo to the skillet and stir to combine with the cream sauce and vegetables. Make sure the orzo is well coated with the sauce.
  • Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the orzo is heated through and the sauce has thickened to your desired consistency.

6. Adjust Seasoning:

  • Taste the dish and adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed. Proper seasoning is key to bringing out the best flavors in the dish.

7. Serve:

  • Divide the creamed corn orzo among four plates.
  • Top each serving with a salmon fillet.
  • Garnish with fresh chopped parsley for a burst of color and freshness.

Tips and Variations

  1. Choosing Salmon:
    • Fresh, high-quality salmon fillets are essential for the best flavor. If possible, opt for wild-caught salmon for its superior taste and texture.
    • If you prefer, you can use skinless salmon fillets. Just ensure to sear them gently to avoid sticking.
  2. Corn Options:
    • Fresh corn kernels are ideal, especially when in season. Simply cut them off the cob.
    • Frozen corn is a convenient alternative and works well in this recipe. Thaw and drain the corn before using to avoid excess water.
  3. Cream Substitutes:
    • For a lighter version, you can substitute half-and-half or whole milk for the heavy cream. Keep in mind this will result in a less rich sauce.
    • For a dairy-free option, coconut milk can be used, though it will impart a slight coconut flavor to the dish.
  4. Additional Vegetables:
    • Feel free to add other vegetables to the orzo. Spinach, peas, or bell peppers would be excellent additions.
    • Sauté the vegetables until tender before adding the broth and cream.
  5. Herbs and Spices:
    • Experiment with different herbs to change the flavor profile. Fresh basil, dill, or chives would complement the dish beautifully.
    • A pinch of red pepper flakes can add a touch of heat to the sauce if desired.
  6. Grain Alternatives:
    • While orzo is traditional for this recipe, you can substitute other small pasta shapes like acini di pepe or small shells.
    • For a gluten-free option, try using quinoa or rice.

Nutritional Information (Per Serving)

  • Calories: 680
  • Protein: 35g
  • Carbohydrates: 45g
  • Fat: 40g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Sugar: 4g
  • Sodium: 750mg

Conclusion

Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon is a versatile and comforting dish that is sure to impress. The creamy orzo combined with the fresh, zesty salmon creates a harmonious balance of flavors and textures. This recipe is not only delicious but also visually appealing, making it perfect for any occasion. Enjoy this meal with a side of roasted vegetables or a fresh green salad for a complete and satisfying dining experience.

Source: servingdumplings.com

Yield: 4

Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon

Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon

Creamed Corn Orzo with Salmon is a delectable dish that combines the creamy richness of corn-infused orzo with the flavorful tenderness of perfectly cooked salmon. This recipe is ideal for those who enjoy a blend of hearty pasta, fresh seafood, and comforting, creamy textures. Each bite is a delightful fusion of flavors that makes for a satisfying and elegant meal, suitable for both family dinners and special occasions.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

Seared Salmon:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 salmon fillets skin removed
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp Cajun seasoning

Creamed Corn Orzo:

  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 small yellow onion finely chopped
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 sprigs of thyme more for serving
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 3 ears corn
  • 2 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • chili flakes for serving optional

Instructions

  • Get your prep done before you start cooking. Pat the salmon fillets dry with a paper towel. Season both sides with salt, garlic powder and Cajun seasoning. Grate the Parmesan, finely chop the onion and mince the garlic.

  • Shuck the corn, removing the husks and silks. Cut each cob in half to get 2 equal parts. Hold a halved ear of corn upright on your cutting board, steadying the tapered end against the board. Use a large sharp knife to shave the corn kernels from the cob, working in long strips down towards the bottom. Repeat the process with the remaining ears of corn.

  • Heat oil and 1 tbsp butter over medium high in a large nonstick pan or skillet. Add salmon fillets and sear, 3-4 minutes per side. Remove from skillet and set aside.

  • Reduce heat to medium, add garlic and shallot. Cook until soft and fragrant for about 2 minutes. Stir in salt, pepper and thyme leaves. Add orzo and corn kernels, toast for 1 minute.

  • Pour in broth and bring to a boil. To maintain a simmer, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook uncovered while stirring frequently to keep the orzo from sticking, until almost al dente and most of the liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes.

  • Stir in Parmesan. Next add cream and lemon juice, simmer for 2 minutes. Return salmon to the skillet and simmer everything for 2-3 more minutes or until the salmon is heated through.

  • Top with thyme, black pepper and chili flakes. Enjoy!

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