Use Seafood for the Perfect Holiday Meals
At Wild for Salmon we enjoy seafood daily, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a perfectly suitable option for the decadent meals of the holiday season!
If you search for seafood Christmas dishes, you will likely discover the Italian-American tradition of the Feast of the Seven Fishes. It’s a wonderful way to use seafood at the holidays! But it does require a lot of time, energy and family-interest to create such a feast.
If you live more like us - that is busy, on the go, and with kids - we’ve compiled a group of simple seafood meals for your holiday cooking this year. These recipes are easy to prepare and sure to be loved by all your guests!
- Baked Alaskan Black Cod with Braised Tomatoes
- Molasses-Ginger Salmon with Roasted Acorn Squash and Pomegranate
- Red Wine and Cranberry Glazed Salmon
- Holiday Smoked Spread Ball
- Seven Layer Salmon Bites
Why Seafood is Great for Holiday Meals!
Seafood is a wonderful, healthy choice at any time of year. It works well for both fancy menus as well as staple, week-night dinners.
The seafood recipes we’re sharing in this post are some of our favorite, more elegant - but not complicated! - recipes. They will help you create the perfect holiday menu for your guests this season.
These dishes are high in protein, Omega-3s and other goodness that Granny’s cookies (while sweet and delicious) just don’t offer. A seafood holiday meal might just become a tradition you'll return to year after year!
To infuse some new ideas into this year’s holiday, we brought in our friend and colleague Emma Frisch. Emma shared the recipes for Baked Alaskan Black Cod with Braised Tomatoes and the Molasses-Ginger Salmon with Roasted Acorn Squash and Pomegranate! Emma is the author of Feast by Firelight (for more great recipes) and founder of Firelight Camps in upstate NY.
Both of her recipes highlight the warmth of winter meals. Plus they will add a splash of color to bring the wow-factor up a notch! With just a pint of cherry tomatoes and one pomegranate you will bring the bright colors of the season to your table.
Baked Alaskan Black Cod With Braised Tomatoes
Alaskan Black Cod, also known as sablefish, is a rich, oily white fish full of good and delicious fats. You may have seen it on a menu in a miso marinade; that recipe is not to be missed, but it is not the only way to enjoy this type of white fish. Emma uses acorn squash as a complement; any good winter squash will do. If you haven’t had black cod prepared in this way, the holidays are a perfect time to try it out. See Emma’s recipe post ”Baked Alaskan Black Cod with Braised Tomatoes” for more on the sustainability and health benefits of this unique, delicious white fish.
Molasses-Ginger Salmon with Roasted Acorn Squash and Pomegranate
The colors are almost as rich as the tastes in this beautiful recipe by Emma Frisch.
With the dark backdrop of cast-iron as a serving dish, the red sockeye salmon and pomegranate seeds over a bed of yellow squash will brighten your Christmas table. If you include the optional parsley garnish, you’ll really get the Christmas colors going! The molasses-ginger glaze offers a feeling of warming spices to the dish and thus it’s perfect for chilly evenings of celebratory meals outside. Sometimes when we are fishing in Bristol Bay (where we’re probably without squash and certainly without pomegranate aboard the boat) we’ll just make the glaze for the wild sockeye salmon and serve it over rice. It’s that good - and quick! Read the full recipe here.
Red Wine and Cranberry Glazed Salmon
Alaskan salmon is delicious on its own with just about any pairing, but with the short days and long nights of the holiday season, sometimes it’s just right to include a red wine in your preparation - with a few sips saved for the chef!
We use a local wine from our neighbors at Freas Farm Winery, but any good dry red wine will work well!
Along with the cranberries, this dish is sure to give you and your guests the fall winter flavor you’ve been looking for this holiday season. This dish can be prepared with our wild-caught Alaska Sockeye Salmon Portions or Fillets, depending on how many you’re feeding. We recommend prepping the salmon into portions before cooking for easy serving and so that the portions absorb as much sauce as possible. Read the complete recipe here.
Holiday Smoked Spread Ball
Sometimes you just need one hors d’oeuvres or starter to dress up a holiday meal or gathering.
This Holiday Smoked Spread Ball is the perfect centerpiece to a cheese board or charcuterie board. This is a rich dip of beautiful colors with our pre-made Smoked Salmon Spread at the center. The smoky flavor of the fish, paired with the tart, bright cranberries is ... perfect. The pistachios add a nice texture. Your most seafood-wary guests will love this spread and enjoy the health benefits of Alaska salmon.
You can find the full recipe here.
Of note … we call this spread a “recipe,” but it’s more like an “assembly” - quick and easy for the last minute platter as the guests start rolling in. The simple list of ingredients will help make this one into your regular rotation.
Seven Layer Salmon Bites
If you have a bit more time to craft the cheeseboard, or some special guests to impress, consider stepping it up a notch with this Seven Layer Salmon Bites recipe - topped with the treasure that is wild Alaska salmon ikura!
Ikura is also known as salmon caviar, roe, or eggs, which are lightly cured with salt. Keta salmon eggs are the largest and most coveted for this recipe, which is why we’re proud to make the Keta species available for this recipe and more!
These bites take some chilling so plan to make this one about an hour in advance of party time. The dressed-up cream cheese, or schmear, is layered with our salty and savory Nova-Style Smoked Lox, which is easy to work with to make these bites the perfect stylish and delicious finger-food.
A Merry “Fishmas” from All of Us at Wild for Salmon!
We love all the classic Christmas cookies here at Wild for Salmon. But our holiday table is not complete without wild seafood.
Every year our team prepares and enjoys an Alaskan salmon Christmas dinner. We are always seeking out new recipes for the occasion!
We’d love to hear about how you are celebrating during this festive season. Please send us photos of your holiday dinner creations and seafood celebrations! If you have a great seafood recipe that you enjoy feel free to share it with us. We love being inspired by what you all come up with and may even share your ideas with our other customers!
2020 has been both an unusual and truly remarkable year. We hope you find comfort knowing that you are getting the best quality, most delicious and sustainable seafood possible while also supporting clean water - every time you order from Wild for Salmon.