Chili Rubbed Salmon with Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables and Honey Fried Chickpeas

Exciting things are happening for us this week. For the last month and a half our driveway has dominated by Jay’s fishing boat while he prepared for his upcoming charter fishing season. Today was the day he towed it down to St. Joseph to finally load it in Lake Michigan. His first trip is Saturday and I will be joining him for what looks to be a very cold and adventurous weekend.

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Because the Great Lakes offer such a diverse array of fish, Jay follows the season for each species which means every spring he’s fishing for coho salmon in Lake Michigan. Spring coho are pretty small in size, but have a nice mild flavor and are consequently one of my favorite fishes to eat.

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I’m so excited to get back out on the boat and catch more salmon to stock or freezer. Our supply from last year is running dangerously low but I want to use up what we have before bringing more home. Roasting salmon is, by far, my favorite method for cooking it. For this recipe, I rub it with salt, pepper, garlic, chili powder, and brown sugar. It’s a little spicy and a tad sweet and oh so good with roasted vegetables and chickpeas.

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There are a lot of components to this dish, but the vegetables and the salmon roast together in the oven at the same time. While those are rolling, the chickpeas can be fried and the dressing mixed. To assemble the bowls, I dress some baby kale with a drizzle of the dressing then top with the salmon, vegetables, chickpeas, and feta.

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This dish can be served warm or assembled the night before and eaten cold for a filling and delicious lunch. I’d love to hear some of your favorite ways to eat salmon, tell me about them in the comments below!

Chili Rubbed Salmon with Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables and Honey Fried Chickpeas

For the Salmon and Roasted Vegetables

  • 2-4 Salmon Filets
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Tsp Garlic Powder
  • Pepper
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Eggplant, sliced into strips
  • 2 Medium Zucchini, sliced into strips
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, sliced into strips

For the Chickpeas

  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Canned Chickpeas
  • 1 Tbsp Honey
  • 1 Tsp Chili Powder
  • Dash of Salt

For the Dressing

  • Juice from 2 Lemons
  • 1 Tsp Dijon
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

For Serving

  • Romaine Lettuce or Baby Kale
  • Feta Cheese

Preheat the oven to 425. Combine the spices and brown sugar for the salmon in a bowl. Place the salmon on a baking sheet and rub with the mixture. Spread the vegetables on two more baking sheets and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, and additional chili powder and toss with your hands to combine everything. Place the salmon and vegetables the oven for about 15-20 minutes. Cooking times may vary for each element, so be sure to check on them every couple minutes after the first 15.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil for the chickpeas in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chickpeas, honey, chili powder, and salt and stir to coat. Bring to a simmer, stirring every couple minutes until the outside gets toasted.

Add all the ingredients for the dressing to a jar and shake to combine.

To assemble, toss a little bit of the dressing with the lettuce or kale. Top with vegetables, salmon, chickpeas, feta, and additional dressing, if desired.