In our home, we love one-pan recipes, fish dishes, and pasta. That means that this recipe in particular was like the stars aligning and creating a dish of deliciousness straight into my stomach!
We love how simple and wonderfully delicious this recipe is, and it makes quite a lot of food too - you certainly won’t be feeling hungry afterward.
This recipe called for some onion and garlic as part of the recipe, and we certainly love them. If you wanted to change things up, however, you could try using a different kind of onion! Spring onions would work well here, as would shallots.
An important thing to keep in mind when you’re making this recipe is that when you’re first making the sauce, you’re essentially making a bechamel sauce around some pieces of onion and garlic.
This means that even though the sauce has small chunks of vegetables in it, you need to be able to ensure the flour has been properly whisked in, or the sauce will not be as smooth or thick as you might have hoped.
The Stars of This Recipe: Risoni, Salmon, and Spinach
One thing that I really love about this recipe is how little time it takes. This is one of those wonderful meals that take just about fifteen minutes (or less) and is also a really delicious crowd pleaser.
Of course, those fifteen minutes don’t account for finding all the ingredients, as the box of risoni in your pantry might be hidden away behind any number of mysterious things!
If you’re looking for some quick and easy salmon that would be perfect to add to this dish, then you can consider finding some pre-cooked salmon. That way, all you’ll need to do is warm it up in the pan, and the meal will be nearly ready to go on the table!
If you want to switch up the flavors a little bit, you could consider using smoked salmon instead of unsmoked. The flavors might not be adored by quite so many people (kids especially) but it will be an interesting, new, and delicious take on this recipe.
Risoni and pasta options
Risoni is also known as orzo in a number of places around the world, so if you’re trying to track down a bag you might run into a little trouble. It’s that type of pasta that’s quite small indeed, almost like large risotto rice.
If you didn’t want to use risoni or orzo in this recipe, there are plenty of other types of pasta you could use.
If you wanted to keep things fairly small, then you could use a short pasta like fusilli or penne, and the overall consistency would be similar to using risoni.
If you wanted to completely go in the other direction, then you could definitely use linguini or spaghetti! While these two types of pasta are really long and might pose a challenge during mixing, you’ll certainly be able to get the salmon and peas mixed in with enough elbow grease.
To serve this dish, if you choose to use longer pasta, I recommend using some tongs to pick up small amounts of the dish at a time, and then spooning any residual sauce onto the plates just before you serve.
- ½ stick butter.
- 1 small onion, chopped finely.
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic.
- 1 tablespoon flour.
- 2 cups milk.
- 2 cups chicken broth.
- 1 ½ cups dry risoni or orzo pasta.
- 1 cup frozen peas.
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice.
- 2 salmon fillets, cooked and flaked - you could use one can of salmon, flaked.
- 1 cup baby spinach.
- Zest of one lemon.
How To Make Salmon Risoni
- Firstly, get your largest skillet ready to go. Place it on the stove and preheat it - using that time to melt the stick of butter.
- When the skillet is hot, add in the onion and garlic, before cooking for a minute to release the aromatics and allow them to soften slightly. If you’re having trouble softening onion and garlic, try placing a lid on the pan so that they can steam in their own juices - this works wonders!
- Stir in the flour, making sure not to have any spot that’s too densely packed with flour. That flour will be quite difficult to break up in the liquid and can affect the overall consistency of your meal.
- Slowly add in the milk and broth. As when you might make a macaroni cheese sauce or a simple bechamel, you first make the roux with butter and flour, and then slowly add the milk. It’s important to ensure that the mixture has no lumps of flour before you add the next small amount of milk, otherwise, the texture will be quite poor.
- Add the broth and stir before bringing it to a boil to cook the pasta.
- Reduce the heat under the pot to medium, and add the dry pasta. Cook for roughly ten minutes, or until it’s tender. Ideally, you want to undercook pasta just a little as it will continue to cook as it’s sat in the bowl when you’re eating it. Therefore, having pasta that’s a little too firm can actually be a good thing!
- Add in the frozen peas, and cook the mixture for three minutes in total. This is roughly how long it takes to defrost frozen vegetables.
- Turn off the heat under the dish, and stir in the lemon juice, salmon, spinach, zest, and salt and pepper. Make sure that you’ve properly mixed in all of these things, as otherwise, the spinach won’t wilt properly, making the dish a lot more cumbersome and tough to eat.
- Serve and enjoy! If you wanted to give the meal an extra little push, you could top with a small amount of freshly grated parmesan - it will add so much flavor and give it the classic Italian finish.
One Pan Salmon Risoni
- ½ stick butter
- 1 small onion chopped
- 2 tbsp garlic minced
- 1 tbsp flour
- 2 cups milk
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1½ cups dry risoni or orzo pasta
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 salmon filets, cooked and flaked
- 1 cup baby spinach
- zest of lemon
- In a large skillet melt butter. Add in onion and garlic and cook for 1 minute.
- Stir in flour.
- Slowly add in milk and broth and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to medium heat and add pasta, cook about 10 minutes or until tender.
- Add peas and cook 3 minutes.
- Turn off heat and stir in lemon juice, salmon, spinach, zest and salt and pepper. Serve and enjoy!
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