No Salt…

No Problem!

You can’t open a newspaper, read a blog, or even make it through your facebook feed without hearing about salt, and in particular sodium. Hypertension, weight gain, lack of brain function and just about anything else regularly occurring as a health issue in this country is being linked to sodium intake. But quite frankly, do we really need scientific studies and governmental organizations to realize that restaurants use a lot of salt. Or that frozen entrees rely on a ton of salt for preservation. Or that eating chips makes you thirsty. Salt tastes good. So use it in moderation and move on…

So all that being said, you must be wondering what the hell my “no salt, no problem” blog entry is all about. Well last night I was faced with a unique dilemma. Here I was, dinner plans in place, ready to cook when I realized the one ingredient you never seem to run out of was the one ingredient I was missing. I was out of salt! I was just about to throw on my sneakers and head for the store when laziness creativity took over…

Honestly this may have been the best dinner I have ever made. I know I’ve said that before but this one blew me away. And to think, not a single grain of salt was added. Luckily for me my fridge was stocked with a few typically salty ingredients. Olives, feta cheese, and tomatoes all posess a satisfying saltiness either naturally occurring or through the process of curing. And incorporating these three ingredients throughout the dish is what made this meal so good.

First I made an arugula, broccoli, and feta pesto. It may sound a bit odd but honestly I may never want the traditional basil again. Then I made the sauce to poach Mahi Mahi fillets in. Tomatoes, olives, and fresh thyme melded sweetness and saltiness to act as the perfect flavor enhancement for the meaty fish. Lastly I made a simple bean salad of red beans, mushrooms, and sautéed broccoli stems. This salad was inspired by the three bean salad I had in Puerto Rico that was frustratingly simple and delicious. The addition of the broccoli stems which I am always trying to incorporate to eliminate my waste, acted as a nice crispy element while everything soaked up a bit of that pesto and a splash of red wine vinegar.

So, faced with my lack of salt and subsequent lack of enthusiasm for heading out to the store, creativity prevailed, and in a big way. Borrowing flavor from some salty ingredients, I was able to produce a “salt free” restaurant ready meal. Did I reduce my sodium intake? Probably not, but hey, it’s all about how you spin it…

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