Easy mirin-glazed salmon

This must be the fastest way there is to create a culinary sensation. Nigella Lawson’s gorgeous combination of salty, sweet and spicy.
If there are only two of you eating, I would be inclined to stick to the quantities given here, letting a couple of pieces or whatever you don’t eat get cold, as it makes a fantastic salad the next day.

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1/4 cup mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
1/4 cup soft light brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
4 x 5oz pieces wild salmon, skinned, cut from the thick part, so narrow and tall, rather than wide and flat
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 – 2 scallions (halved and shredded into fine strips)

Mix the mirin, brown sugar and soy sauce in a shallow dish that will take all 4 pieces of salmon, and marinate the salmon in it for 3 minutes on the first side and 2 minutes on the second. Meanwhile heat a large non-stick frying pan on the hob.
Cook the salmon in the hot, dry pan for 2 minutes and then turn the salmon over, add the marinade and cook for another 2 minutes.
Remove the salmon to whatever plate you’re serving it on, add the rice vinegar to the hot pan, and warm through.
Pour the dark, sweet, salty glaze over the salmon and top with the scallion strips.
Serve with rice or noodles as you wish, and consider putting some sushi ginger on the table, too.

Teriyaki salmon bowl with udon and spinach.

This is a delectable and light dish packed with flavor. It’s very low calorie and you’re going to love it!

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Serves 4

8 cups dashi broth (You can buy this ready made)
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin
1 knob fresh ginger (about 2 inch piece)
13 oz dried udon noodles
4 small salmon fillets, skinned
1 bunch spinach, washed
4 green onions, sliced on the diagonal

Teriyaki sauce
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp sake
1 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp peanut oil
1 tsp sugar

For the teriyaki sauce

Combine the dark soy, sake, mirin, oil and sugar in a small pot and heat, stirring, until sugar has dissolved. Set aside.
Heat the dashi in a second pot and add the soy and mirin. Peel the ginger, cut into cubes and crush in a garlic press to get 1 tbsp ginger juice. Add the juice to the broth and adjust the flavorings to taste.
Cook the noodles in plenty of boiling water until al dente, about 8 minutes.Drain and rinse in cold water, cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Brush the salmon with the teriyaki sauce and grill on a hot well oiled grill, or a heavy cast iron flat pan, leaving the inside lightly pink.
Bring the dashi broth to just below a boil and add the noodles to the broth for 30 seconds to heat through, then divide the noodles among 4 warmed bowls.
Dip the spinach leaves briefly into the broth to wilt them and distribute them among the bowls.
Ladle the hot broth into each bowl and top the noodles with the grilled salmon, broken into large chunks or left whole.
Scatter the green onions on top and serve with chopsticks and spoons.

Simple, stunning salmon tartare

On a hot day with a glass of champagne or Rose what could be more wonderful than this?

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Serves 4

8 oz fresh boneless wild salmon, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp good quality mayonnaise

In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients. Refrigerate until very cold before serving.

Dried apricot-cured salmon

This recipe comes from “The Girl and the Fig” cookbook and it really stood out as something worth doing.

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Apricot-Cured Salmon
Yield depends on usage 

½ cup dried apricots
½ cup Pernod
¼ cup kosher salt
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
2 fennel fronds
1 pound wild salmon, skin on

Place the apricots in a bowl with ½ cup hot water and the Pernod and rehydrate for 20 minutes. Purée the apricots in a food processor. Mix the purée with the salt, sugar, pepper, and fennel fronds.

Cut a piece of cheesecloth large enough to cover the salmon. Place the cheesecloth in a large baking dish and lay the salmon skin-side down on the cheesecloth. Cover the salmon evenly with the apricot-salt mixture and wrap it with the cheesecloth. Place another baking pan over the cheesecloth and weigh it down with at least 3 pounds of pressure (you can use water jugs, tomato cans, or even books). Refrigerate for 48 to 72 hours. Remove the weights and unwrap the salmon. Remove the excess salt mixture from the salmon and pat dry.

Slice very thin to serve.

Compote of salmon and cauliflower cream

This really gorgeous starter can be ideally served for both lunch and dinner. Either make it in a 4″ ring mold or make it like in this picture, in a small chilled glass.

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Makes 6 portions

One side of salmon, about 2 3/4 lbs (skinned, fileted, and pin boned)
1 3/4 pints extra virgin olive oil
A bunch of dill
1 tsp rock salt

For the Cauliflower cream
1 medium cauliflower
whole milk
A handful of fresh cilantro
1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
1 tsp white peppercorns, crushed
17 fl oz heavy cream
salt and white pepper, freshly ground

Salmon
Preheat the oven to 90C/200F/Gas 1/2
Place the salmon in a suitable container lined with foil, and cover with the olive oil and fresh dill. Sprinkle with rock salt.
Fold the foil over and place the container in preheated oven, making sure that the salmon is completely immersed in the oil. The cooking time will be around 20 minutes. The salmon should then be taken out of the oven and left in the oil.

Cauliflower cream
Break the cauliflower into small florets, and place in a pan with enough milk to cover. Tie the fresh cilantro and crushed seeds and peppercorns in a small piece of muslin and place in the milk. Cook until the cauliflower florets are very soft.
Drain off and discard the milk, remove and discard the small muslin bag, then puree the cauliflower.
Leave to cool, then gently fold in the double cream. Season as required, then chill.

Gently remove the salmon from the oil, removing any dill. Drain off any excess oil, then gently flake the salmon.

To serve,
Place a 10cm ring mold (with 7cm diameter) on the first plate. Place some flaked salmon in the bottom of the mold. (or put some flaked salmon into a chilled glass)
Spoon the chilled cauliflower cream on top and garnish with a small seasonal salads, and toasted brioche.
Remove the mold and create compotes of salmon on the other plates.
You can also garnish the dish with tomato (cut into tiny cubes), coriander oil and a mixture of mushroom powder and olive oil.

Creamy lemon, parmesan and smoked salmon linguine

Sometimes you can’t beat simple, especially when the flavors are as good as this. You must try this wonderfully simple recipe from the great “Delicious” website!

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Serves 2 but can easily be augmented

8 oz linguini
butter for sauteing
2 good sized garlic cloves, crushed
7  fl oz creme fraiche
zest of 1 large lemon
2 heaped tbsp grated fresh parmesan cheese
3 to 4 oz sliced smoked salmon, cut into strips
Some wild baby rocket (arugula) leaves for serving, if you like

Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet
Melt the butter in a pan and cook the garlic gently until softened.
Add the creme fraiche, lemon zest and parmesan cheese and cook gently for about 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
Drain the pasta and toss with the sauce and smoked salmon strips.
Divide between two bowls and garnish with the rocket leaves to serve, if you like

Quick salmon fillet poached in coconut milk

Such a simple, delicate and fragrant way to poach salmon fillets.
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Serves 4

About 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
About 1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tsp grated orange zest
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
1 to 3 tsp Asian chile sauce, depending on how hot you like it.
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
2 tbsp chopped cilantro sprigs
4 (6 oz) salmon fillets, skinned, pin bones removed

In a saucepan just large enough to hold the fish, combine the coconut milk, orange juice, orange zest, fish sauce, chile sauce, garlic, ginger, mint and cilantro and mix well.
Add the fish and make sure it is submerged. If it is not submerged, add equal amounts of coconut milk and orange.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a very low simmer. Cover the pan and decrease the heat to low. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes.
If the fish does not flake when prodded with a fork, cover the pan and simmer for 2 minutes more.
(If the fish is not submerged, turn the fish over after 5 minutes of cooking).
Gently remove the fish and place in dinner bowls or plates. Spoon the sauce around the sides and serve at once with some plain steamed rice, steamed snap peas and a wedge of lime.

Easy smoked salmon pate

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Such a lovely pate and gorgeous to start a meal with a crisp glass of dry white wine.Serve with toasted thinly sliced white bread or oatcakes.

Serves 6 to 8
4 oz butter
8 oz smoked salmon, preferably wild
salt and pepper
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 pint (150 mls) heavy cream, lightly whipped
chopped fresh chives and extra smoked salmon for garnish

Put the butter in a small saucepan and heat gently until melted. Leave for 5 minutes to cool slightly.
Place the smoked salmon in a blender or food processor. With the machine running, pour in the melted butter and mix until the salmon is a smooth paste. Remove the mixture from the bowl, season to taste, then stir in the lemon juice and lightly whipped cream.
Spoon the pate into a serving dish and garnish with chopped chives and smoked salmon. Chill for 30 minutes before serving.

 

 

 

Thai Butternut squash and seafood curry

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This has the most amazing flavors and I have made it at least 6 times, always successfully. With the yellow (or red) curry paste, go carefully as different curry pastes have different strengths. You don’t want to overpower the seafood.
If you use green beans as the green vegetable, make sure you parboil and shock them in cold water before adding them to the pan.

Serves 4 generously.
1 (14 oz) can coconut milk ( about 1 2/3 cups)
1 to 2 tbsp yellow or red curry paste ( I used 1 tbsp)
1 1/2 cups fish stock
3 tbsp fish sauce (Nam Pla is a great one)
2 tbsp sugar
3 lemongrass stalks, each cut into 1/3’s and bruised with the flat of a knife
3 keffir lime leaves, (or regular ones if you can’t get keffir lime leaves) stalked and cut into very thin strips.
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 1/4 lbs butternut squash, peeled and cut into large, bite sized chunks
1lb 2oz salmon fillet, skinned and cut into large bite sized chunks
1/b 2oz peeled, deveined raw shrimp
Bok Choy or any other green vegetable of your choice
1/2 to 1 lime, juiced or more to taste
Cilantro, for garnish

Skin the thick creamy top off the can of coconut milk and put it into a large saucepan or Dutch oven with the curry paste, over medium heat.
Let it sizzle and, using a fork, whisk or wooden spoon, beat the cream and paste together until combined. Still beating gently, add the rest of the coconut milk, fish sauce, fish stock,  sugar, lemongrass, lime leaves and turmeric.
Bring to the boil then add the butternut squash. Cook on a fast simmer until the squash is tender, about 15 mins.

*  You can cook the recipe up until this part in advance, maybe leaving the butternut squash with some bite still in it as it will continue to soften as the pan cools. Either way, when you’re about 5 mins from wanting to eat, get ready to cook the seafood.

To the robustly simmering pan, add the salmon and shrimp. When the salmon and shrimp have cooked through, which will only take about 3 to 4 minutes, stir in any green vegetable you’re using – sliced, chopped or shredded as suits and push down into the sauce with a wooden spoon.
When the green vegetable is cooked, squeeze in the juice of half a lime, stir and taste and add the juice of the remaining half if you feel it needs it.
Take the pan off the heat and pour the curry into a large bowl and sprinkle over the cilantro; the point is that the cilantro goes in just before serving.
Serve with more chopped cilantro for people to add to their own bowls as they eat and some plain Thai jasmine or Basmati rice.

 

 

Avocado salsa to have with cold poached salmon

 

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Serves 4

This is gorgeous on a hot summers day with cold poached salmon.  The recipe is from Delia Smith, a British recipe book writer whose recipes are absolutely fail-safe. This is a cross between a sauce and a salsa and complements the flavor of salmon and it also looks really pretty with the color of the salmon.

1 ripe but firm avocado
2 large firm tomatoes
1/2 small red onion
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 rounded tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
A few drops Tabasco
Salt and freshly milled black pepper

Skin the tomatoes by pouring boiling water over them, then leaving for exactly 1 minute before draining and slipping the skins off when they’re cool enough to handle.
Then cut each tomato in half and, holding each half over a saucer (cut side downwards), squeeze gently to extract the seeds.
Now chop the tomato flesh as finely as possible.
Next, halve the avocado, remove the stone, cut each half into quarters and peel off the skin.
Chop the avocado into minutely small dice, and do the same with the onion. Finally, combine everything together in a bowl, adding seasoning, the lime juice, chopped cilantro and a few drops of Tabasco sauce.
Cover with clingfilm and leave on one side for an hour before serving to allow the flavors to develop.
Serve this salsa with grilled, poached or baked salmon salmon