Get a healthy dose of omega-3 fats, fibre, vitamins and minerals with my chilli bean wild salmon and noodle stir-fry.
Despite eating much smaller portions of food these days, I’m staying satisfied for much more extended periods. I also haven’t experienced bloating or any other horrible digestive problems since changing my diet over a week ago. A very welcome change indeed!
My audience has been very encouraging and supportive for the most part, but Instagram wouldn’t be the same without trolls and hateful comments. As you can imagine, I’ve had my fair share of those too. My egg Buddha bowl wound a lot of people up the wrong way, so I’m expecting more hate for this wild salmon bowl. It is what it is, onwards and upwards!
On a side note, I’m still adjusting to eating seafood and egg. I have been sourcing organic eggs and fish from my local grocery stores and fishmonger, respectively. I’m not convinced about the source of the fish from my fishmonger, so I plan to subscribe to an organic food delivery service eventually. Quite a few of them have caught my eye, but of course, I need to narrow them down to one. As soon as I make my choice, I’ll share it with you.
Fish and Mercury – To Eat or Not to Eat?
There are a lot of controversies surrounding wild-caught fish and seafood consumption in general because of mercury, plastic and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contamination. I get it because it was one of the reasons why I switched to a plant-exclusive diet. There is no doubt that the sea is contaminated, but the risk of toxicity from seafood consumption is exaggerated to a degree.
If it were as bad as ‘people’ claim, healthcare professionals would not be advocating for us to adopt a Mediterranean-style diet that is high in seafood. The media would also be rife with daily stories of mercury and PCB poisoning from seafood consumption.
We tend to underestimate how resilient our bodies detoxifying mechanisms are. Besides, we all have different genetics, and we are exposed to various environmental factors, so while seafood and mercury may adversely affect one person, it won’t necessarily affect another in the same way. I’m not suggesting that you eat fish with reckless abandon, nor am I trying to defend my decision to eat it, I’m only stating my science-based opinion.
Murine studies show a lower risk of mercury poisoning from eating fish that have higher selenium to mercury ratios. This is because selenium neutralises some of the toxic effects of mercury.
Fish including salmon, trout, tuna, cod flounder, halibut, pollock, sole and snapper have high selenium to mercury ratio and are the safest options to eat. Stay away from shark, king mackerel, swordfish and whale because they contain much more mercury than selenium.
You can increase the amount of selenium in your diet by eating grains, nuts, seeds and certain vegetables like broccoli boost your mercury-fighting power. Please don’t buy or start taking a selenium supplement because you could develop a toxic reaction.
We certainly need more robust human studies to verify these selenium claims, but I’m confident enough in the studies available to eat the recommended two-three portions of fish per week without much worry.
Finally, there is evidence to suggest that cooking reduces the bioavailability (the amount we absorb) of mercury in fish. This phenomenon has only been studied in Spanish mackerel (85% lower mercury in cooked fish) and swordfish (16% lower in cooked fish). While I can’t categorically say that cooking reduces the bioavailability of mercury in the fish we typically consume, there is a good chance that it does.
Salmon is undoubtedly a great source of nutrients. Per 100g, wild salmon provides 1.6g of omega-3 fats, 22.1g protein, 382mg potassium, 250g phosphorus, 27mcg selenium, 8.6mcg vitamin D, 1.1mg vitamin E, 12.7mg vitamin B3 and 7mcg vitamin B12 (almost three times the RDA). I no longer have to worry about taking a B12 supplement, hallelujah!Print
Omega-3 and vitamin B12-rich wild salmon with noodle stir-fry. This makes a brilliant, satisfying lunch or dinner.
For the noodles
- 50g whole wheat or egg noodles
- 100g stir-fry vegetables (broccoli, baby corn, mangetout)
- 1 small garlic clove, finely minced or crushed
- 1 small spring onion, finely chopped
- 1 small sweet red pepper, chopped
- 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon Shaoxing rice wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
- Black pepper, to taste
For the Salmon
- 100g wild salmon
- 1 teaspoon tomato puree
- 1 teaspoon chilli bean sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- Black pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 200ºC. Combine the tomato puree, chilli bean sauce, cider vinegar and honey in a medium container then coat the salmon thoroughly with the marinade. Marinate the salmon in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes then place on a lined baking tray and cook in the oven for 20 minutes
Start cooking the noodles in a pan of boiling water for 4 minutes. While the noodles are cooking, heat a large frying pan or wok with one teaspoon of sesame oil. Once hot, add the spring onions and garlic and stir-fry for 15 seconds then add the vegetables. Stir-fry for three minutes then add the drained noodles, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and pepper. Continue to stir-fry for two minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
Take the pan off the heat, transfer to a bowl alongside the baked salmon. Garnish with fresh coriander, chilli flakes and toasted sesame seeds if you desire.
Replace wheat noodles with rice noodles for a gluten-free option. You can also use tofu and tempeh in place of salmon for a vegan option.
Keywords: noodles, salmon, stir-fry