Light and fast: poached salmon with avocado sauce and quinoa tabbouleh

Late Spring cooking should be fresh and easy.  With all of the wonderful fruits and veggies making their way into the markets, there’s plenty of reasons to put a quick and delicious meal on the table once in a while.

This dinner, inspired by my leafing though Bon Appetit magazine which I started receiving free for some unknown reason, takes about 25 minutes tops.  Plus it’s healthy, fresh, seasonal, and delicious, especially when enjoyed at sunset on the patio.

Start by cooking off your quinoa so it has a chance to cool.  Then prepare your poaching liquid.  Poaching salmon is about as easy as it gets, and there’s really no guesswork involved. Bring your liquid just to a boil, turn off the heat, plop in your salmon, and wait 10-15 minutes (depending on how pink you like your center).

And the sauce is also a breeze, throw everything in the blender and give it a whirl.

While your salmon is poaching you can finish off your quinoa tabbouleh.  Quinoa is a superfood!  It’s a cinch to make (see below) and is a complete protein high in plenty of vitamins.  Eat it often.  It has a bit of a nutty flavor on its own served hot, but also goes well in cold salads.  The tabbouleh is crunchy from the hothouse cucumbers, tangy from the acids, and fresh tasting from the parsley.  A winner with the salmon and creamy avocado sauce.

25 minutes to a healthy dinner your family will love.  Ain’t that a treat.

Poached Salmon with Avocado Sauce

Serves 2
Prep time 5 minutes
Cook time 15 minutes
Total time 20 minutes


  • 1 lb salmon (preferably fresh and wild)
  • 3 cups stock (chicken, vegetable, or fish)
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 sprigs thyme (or tarragon (but then omit wine and add more stock))
  • 2 avocados
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 lime, juice and zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin


  • Chives (chopped)


Adapted from Bon Appetit


1. Cut fish into 2 portions and season with salt and pepper
2. Bring stock and wine just to a boil, then throw in thyme. Remove from heat and add salmon. Let stand until cooked to medium-rare (about 10-15 minutes). Remove salmon and transfer to plate. Chill if desired.
3. Make sauce by scooping avocado, yogurt, lime zest and juice and cumin into blender or food processor. Blend until combined, then season with salt and pepper and additional lime juice if needed.
4. Spoon avocado sauce on bottom of plate and layer salmon on top. Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with a lime wedge and chives if desired.

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Serves 4
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 15 minutes
Total time 25 minutes


  • 1 cup quinoa (rinsed)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus zest
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1 hothouse cucumber (or 2 persian cucumbers)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes (halved)
  • 1/3 cup flat leaf (italian) parsley (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint (chopped)
  • 2 scallions (sliced thin)
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil (good quality)


Adapted from Bon Appetit


1. Bring quinoa, 1 1/4 cups water and a pinch of salt to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and simmer until quinoa is tender, about 10 minutes. Let stand covered for 5 minutes, then fluff with fork. Let cool.
2. In a bowl whisk lemon juice, olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
3. Mix quinoa with cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, and herbs. Mix in dressing and season to taste.
4. Will keep one day in refrigerator.


  1. Steve Shender says:

    Now that looks GOOD!

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