This dish is a vibrant and delicious home run any day, any time of year!
Arctic char, wild harvested in Canada and Iceland, is a fish with an orange-pink color and flavorful flesh that tastes like a cross between salmon and trout. Thanks to its salmon-like qualities it is very forgiving and adaptable to many cooking methods. Turmeric has been used for thousands of years as both a dye, known for its vibrant yellow color, and as an Ayurvedic medicine, praised for its healing powers for everything from inflammation to heart disease. This recipe features turmeric in both the fish kebab and the couscous, making both components as beautiful as they are delicious.
Equipment: cutting board; chef’s knife; dry and wet measuring cups; measuring spoons; small saucepan with a tight-fitting lid; large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid; wooden spoon; rimmed sheet pan; skewers; wire rack (optional); aluminum foil
Couscous Ingredients: 2 cups chicken stock or water 4 scallions, finely diced
1 large carrot, finely diced 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 1 teaspoon turmeric 1 teaspoon ground cumin 1 teaspoon ground coriander ½ cup sliced kumquats ¼ cup pomegranate arils 2 cups couscous ¼ cup chopped parsley
Salmon Kebab Ingredients:
1½ pounds Arctic char, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon turmeric
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to broil. Bring the chicken stock or water to a simmer in a small saucepan, cover, and keep warm.
2. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté the scallions and diced carrot in 1 tablespoon olive oil for 2-3 minutes, until softened. Add the turmeric, cumin, and coriander and stir well to coat. Add in the couscous and combine well. Remove the pan from the heat.
3. Return the chicken stock or water to a boil over high heat and pour it over the couscous mixture. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, removed from the heat. Let stand for 5-10 minutes, or until the broth is absorbed. Then fluff couscous with fork, and stir in the kumquats, pomegranate arils, and chopped parsley. Stir in the remaining tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Set aside.
4. In a large mixing bowl, mix the olive oil, turmeric, kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Add the cubed fish to the oil mixture and stir well to coat. Set aside.
5. Thread the Arctic char on skewers. Place the skewers on rimmed sheet pan (or on a wire rack on a rimmed sheet pan) lined with aluminum foil. Place under the broiler. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
ILOC tip: If using wooden skewers, don't bother soaking them. They'll only be under the broiler for a couple of minutes. Instead, fold the foil over the tips of the skewers to prevent them from burning. It's all about technique, not torture!
5. Serve the fish skewers with the couscous and a green vegetable of your choice.
Makes 4 servings.