I have a confession to make – There were many, many years when I did not like fish.  I grew up on a Kansas farm eating primarily beef and chicken. With the exception tuna fish sandwiches, which I still like to this day, fish was a rarity.

But, our taste buds change and in time, I have come to really like salmon.  I’m always on the lookout for good salmon recipes that are easy to make and best of all, taste good.

One of the reasons why I have grown to love salmon is not only because it has a nice delicate taste, but it’s also one of the best brain foods around. Here’s a recipe of a perfect pairing promoting and protecting brain health – salmon and walnuts.  Both are exceptionally good sources of brain healthy omega-3 fatty acids.  Several studies have shown omega-3s not only help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke but may also help reduce the risk of age-related cognitive decline.

I made this recipe called “Walnut-Crusted Rosemary Salmon,” and this one gets a two thumbs up for probably just about the best salmon recipe I’ve ever made. I loved the crunchy panko/walnut crust and the Dijon mustard mixture.  You will too – give it a try!

Walnut-Crusted Rosemary Salmon – serves 4

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 clove garlic, minced

¼ teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

½ teaspoon honey

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper

3 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs

3 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts – a food processor or blender can do this too

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 1-pound skinless salmon fillet, fresh or frozen

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine mustard, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, rosemary, honey, salt, and crushed red pepper in a small bowl. Combine panko, walnuts, and oil in another small bowl.
  3. Place salmon on the prepared baking sheet. Spread the mustard mixture over the fish and sprinkle with the panko mixture, pressing to adhere.
  4. Bake until the fish flakes easily with a fork, about 8 to 12 minutes, depending on thickness.
Categories: Recipes

Cheryl Mussatto

Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD, is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and Institutional Management from Kansas State University. She is a clinical dietitian for Cotton O’Neil Clinics in Topeka and Osage City, an adjunct professor for Allen Community College, Burlingame, Ks where she teaches Basic Nutrition, and is a blog contributor for Dr. David Samadi and nutroutine.com, an online market place connecting nutrition experts with customers worldwide. She can be contacted here.

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