Healthy Cook

Fishing for Citrus

by Kate Sherwood, March 2010

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A spritz of lemon does wonders for grilled or broiled fish. But that’s just the beginning.
Make these three recipes and you’ll understand why the Italians and Greeks and Chinese and
Japanese—we could go on—love to pair seafood with citrus fruit.

Pan-Seared Wild Salmon with Citrus Salsa

Other sustainable fish that you can use: Arctic
char and Spanish mackerel.

small red onion, very thinly sliced
jalapeño, seeded and minced (optional)
cilantro leaves
¼ cup
canola oil, divided
2 Tbs.
bell peppers, sliced
zucchini, sliced
½ lb.
kosher salt, divided
½ tsp.
Freshly ground black pepper
wild salmon, cut into 4 pieces
1 lb.

Pan-Seared Wild Salmon with Citrus Salad

Make the salsa: Segment the orange and lime (see box). Cut the orange segments into quarters. Toss the orange and lime segments in a bowl with the onion, jalapeño, and cilantro. Set aside.

Heat 1 Tbs. of oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the peppers and zucchini until well browned, 3-5 minutes. Season with ¼ tsp. of salt and pepper. Remove the vegetables and keep them warm. Wipe out the skillet with paper towels.

Heat the remaining 1 Tbs. of oil until shimmering. Season the fish on both sides with the remaining ¼ tsp. of salt and pepper and add to the skillet, skin side up. Cook until golden brown on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook for another 3 minutes, or until just cooked through.

Transfer the fish to 4 plates, spoon on the salsa, and serve with the vegetables. Serves 4.


  • Calories: 280
  • Total Fat: 14 g
  • Sat Fat: 2 g
  • Protein: 27 g
  • Sodium: 300 mg
  • Cholesterol: 50 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 12 g
  • Fiber: 3 g

Pacific Cod with Citrus Dressing

Other sustainable fish that you can use: Pacific halibut and farmed U.S. tilapia. The cooking time for the fish is based on a 1½-inch-thick fillet.

juice oranges or blood oranges
fresh lemon juice
2 tsp.
flat-leaf parsley leaves, minced
¼ cup
dill, minced
8 sprigs
low-fat sour cream
½ cup
kosher salt
¼ tsp.
low-sodium vegetable broth
2 cups
broccolini or broccoli florets
1 lb.
Pacific cod, cut into 4 pieces
1 lb.
Terra Exotic Vegetable Chips
1 oz.

Make the citrus herb dressing: Segment the oranges and squeeze the leftovers to get 1 Tbs. of juice (see box). In a separate bowl, whisk the orange juice with the lemon juice, parsley, dill, sour cream, and salt. Set aside.

Bring the broth to a boil in a large, deep skillet. Add the broccolini and cook, covered, until just tender, about 3 minutes. Remove the broccolini and keep it warm.

Reduce the heat to low and add the fish. Cover and poach for 2 minutes. Gently turn the fish and cook for another 1-3 minutes, until cooked through. Discard the poaching liquid.

Arrange the broccolini and fish on 4 plates. Spoon the citrus herb dressing over the fish and garnish with the orange segments and chips. Serves 4.


  • Calories: 230
  • Total Fat: 5 g
  • Sat Fat: 1.5 g
  • Protein: 26 g
  • Sodium: 280 mg
  • Cholesterol: 50 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 23 g
  • Fiber: 6 g

Citrus Shrimp Salad

For a vegetarian version, substitute sautéed or baked tofu for the steamed shrimp. If you don’t eat grapefruit, you can use 3 oranges instead.

shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1b.
pink grapefruits
¼ cup
fresh lemon juice
2 tsp.
lower-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbs.
English cucumber, sliced
cup edamame, thawed from frozen
1 cup
salad greens
8 cups
sesame seeds, toasted
2 Tbs.

Steam the shrimp until cooked through, 2-3 minutes. Segment the grapefruits and squeeze the leftovers to get 2 tsp. of juice (see box).

In a medium bowl, whisk together the grapefruit juice, mayonnaise, lime juice, and soy sauce. Mix in the shrimp, cucumber, and edamame.

Arrange the salad greens and grapefruit segments on 4 plates, top with the shrimp mixture, and garnish with the sesame seeds. Serves 4.

PER SERVING (3 cups)

  • Calories: 400
  • Total Fat: 17 g
  • Sat Fat: 2 g
  • Protein: 31 g
  • Sodium: 440 mg
  • Cholesterol: 180 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 33 g
  • Fiber: 8 g

How to Segment a Citrus Fruit

    1. Using a sharp knife, cut about a half-inch slice off each end so that the fruit can stand on end.
    2. Slice off strips of the peel, pith, and outer membrane, working from top to bottom around the fruit.
    3. Working over a bowl, cut between the inner membranes to separate out the segments.
    4. If the recipe calls for juice, squeeze the cut-off top and bottom and the leftover inner membranes.

    To watch Kate segment a grapefruit, go to


Watch Kate prepare healthy and delicious dishes at or

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