Salmon is one of those meals I don’t make very often but I really should make more of it. It is very good for you, but Michelle really only likes the Wild salmon, which does have a different taste and look than that of farm-raised salmon and tends to cost quite a bit more. For this reason, I really only get some when I notice it on sale and looking particularly good. This was the case recently when I saw some at Adam’s Farm and picked up a pound for us to have for dinner. The great thing about fish meals is that they take almost no time at all to prepare, and this simple dish from Cook’s Illustrated is no exception and gives the salmon a great Asian flavor.
1 teaspoon packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
1 (1 1/2 – 2-pound)skin-on salmon fillet
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 recipe Asian Barbecue Glaze (to follow)
Asian Barbecue Glaze:
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons Asian chili-garlic sauce
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
For the Asian barbecue glaze, whisk all the ingredients together in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat; simmer until it is thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and cover the saucepan to keep the glaze warm until use.
For the salmon, adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Combine the brown sugar, kosher salt and cornstarch together in a small bowl. Use a sharp knife to remove any whitish fat from the belly of the salmon and then cut the fillet into 4 equal portions. Pat the fillets dry with paper towels and season with pepper. Sprinkle the brown sugar mixture evenly over the top of the flesh side of the salmon fillets, rubbing it to distribute it evenly.
Heat oil in a large, oven-safe nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until it is just smoking. Place the salmon, flesh side down, in the skillet and cook until it is well browned, about 1 minute. Using tongs, carefully flip the salmon and cook it on the skin side for about 1 minute.
Remove the skillet from the heat and spoon the Asian barbecue glaze evenly over all the salmon fillets. Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook until the fillets register 125 degrees (for medium-rare) and are still translucent when cut into with a paring knife, about 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer the fillets to a serving platter or individual plates and serve.
The brown sugar on the salmon helps it develop a nice crust when you first sear it while the cornstarch helps the glaze to adhere nicely to the fish. You end up with a beautiful pink salmon with just a nice crust and a great glaze to top it off. The whole meal can be cooked in about 20 minutes. I served this with white rice and spinach, though I also had a bit of the leftover Fall vegetable risotto with mine instead of the white rice. It was very good and simple enough to make anytime you have salmon and just want a quick and easy meal.
That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for some more recipes. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!