So, last weekend at the Farmer's Market, on a whim, my girlfriend picked up a bag of kettle corn. They were popping it fresh and the smell just said, "buy me!" The popped corn with its beautiful mix of salt and sweet was delicious. It got me thinking about other ways to incorporate it into a dish. I thought paired with toasted fennel and fresh dill it would be great. I decided to use it on Salmon, but it would also be dynamite on chicken, shrimp, other white fish, you name it. It was an instant hit! Enjoy!!
4 Salmon filets
2-3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 1/2 C. Kettle corn
1 Tbsp. Fennel seeds
2 Tbsp. Fresh Dill, fine chopped
Red pepper flake to taste
1/2 C. flour
2 Tbsp. water (can use milk)
garlic powder, to taste
onion powder, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400°F
Heat a small, ungreased sauté pan over high heat. Once warm, place fennel seeds in pan.
Move or shake the pan briskly back and forth to stir and agitate the seeds so they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan or burn. Or use a wooden spoon to constantly stir the seeds.
Cook the fennel seeds for 3 to 4 minutes, or until they become fragrant and slightly darker brown.
Turn off the heat and remove pan from the stove top. Place the seeds in a small bowl or scattered on a baking sheet to cool. Place seeds in a mortar and grind with the pestle until fully ground.
Add kettle corn to food processor and pulse to make crumbs. Add ground toasted fennel, dill, and pepper flakes. Reserve in large mixing bowl. In a small bowl whisk egg well, mix in water or milk. Reserve. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and reserve on the side.
Season each salmon filet with garlic and onion powder, salt and pepper. Take a filet at a time and dredge with flour, shaking off excess. Place into egg mixture and coat fully. Then place into popcorn mixture and gently press to insure popcorn crumb mixture adheres to all sides of the fish. Place coated filet on the lined baking sheet. Repeat this step until all the filets are coated with popcorn mixture.
Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, add oil and heat. Very carefully place fish in the pan and cook to golden brown on both sides (this will probably need to done in batches as not to overcrowd the pan). Remove browned fish and place back on lined baking sheet. Once all filets are done, place baking sheet with fish into the hot oven. Cook until done, about 8 minutes. Serve and Enjoy!