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Spiced Salmon & Warm Honeyed Autumn Salsa

Here’s the Autumn special I’m running this week at the restaurant. I’m trying the make the most of the fall harvest ingredients while they’re so bountiful and beautiful! This one is so easy to prepare and plate. It’s also a great combination of savory and sweet, which you all know by know is one of my “things”. This one takes minimal work and will really wow your family and guests. This recipe is also beautiful on a plate and very visually appealing. As always, enjoy and please post your comments and photos!

Chef’s Note: The most tedious part of this is cubing the squash or pumpkin, but there are some stores that sell squash already cleaned and cubed; I know that Whole Foods sells that as an option. Or you can cube the squash/pumpkin a day in advance and refrigerate it for a day. By the way, the squash/pumpkin part of this recipe also makes a great side dish to accompany other meals!! Also, you can use dried cranberries if you wish, but the fresh ones add a nice tartness to the salsa that balances out the sweetness of the squash/pumpkin.

Ingredients • 4 whole wild caught salmon filets, 4-6 oz each • 1 tsp ground cinnamon • 1 tbsp granulated stevia • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes • 1/2 tsp paprika • 1/2 tsp chili powder • 1/2 tsp garlic powder • 1 whole tomato, diced • 1/4 whole onion, diced • 1/2 cup fresh cranberries, chopped roughly • 1 cup butternut squash and/or pumpkin, prepared with the ingredients listed below • 1 Tbsp lime juice • 1/2 Tbsp cumin • 2 tsp salt and pepper each, divided

Ingredients to cook the squash/pumpkin: • 1 small or medium butternut squash (about 1-2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes, AND/OR • 1 small pumpkin, peeled, seeded and cut into cubes • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey • 1-2 teaspoons sea salt • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary

Instructions- 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat two baking sheets with clean nonstick cooking spray. 2. Place the squash/pumpkin cubes in a large bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and honey, then sprinkle with the salt, cinnamon, rosemary and pepper (the ingredients listed speeately for this part). Toss to coat, then divide between the two baking sheets. Spread the cubes into a single layer on the prepared baking sheets. 3. Bake for 15 minutes. Then remove the pans from the oven, turn the cubes with a spatula, then return to the oven. 4. Continue baking until the squash is tender, about 10 to 15 additional minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the rosemary over the squash. 5. Turn the oven up to 450F. 6. In a medium sized bowl, combine the squash/pumpkin, tomato, onion, lime juice, cumin, and 1 tsp each salt & pepper. Mix well, allowing the mixture to marinate while you cook. (This salsa should be served warm or room temperature). 7. Next, combine all the other spices in a shallow bowl: cinnamon, stevia, red pepper flakes, paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, and 1 tsp each salt and pepper. 8. Pat the salmon filets dry with a paper towel. Then coat the salmon evenly in the spice blend and place them on a cooking sheet that’s been prepared with clean cooking spray. 9. Bake the salmon for 12-15 minutes, or until done to your liking. 10. Spoon the salsa over salmon.

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