Salmon is a perfect summer food. It’s readily available, nourishing and quick and easy to cook.
New Zealand’s fresh salmon is farmed in pristine coastal waters and in the chilly canals close to the Southern Alps.
Salmon is a naturally rich source of top-quality protein, vitamins and long chain Omega-3s which are linked to the protection against heart disease and certain cancers, alleviation of arthritic pain, and the boosting of the immune system. But best of all its taste and versatility makes salmon a favourite of home cooks.
When purchasing salmon allow about 100 to 200 grams per person depending on the cut, bones and skin. Fresh salmon should have a clean ‘sea’ smell — it should never smell ‘fishy’. Salmon can be stored in the fridge at less than four degrees Celsius for three to four days. However, it is best enjoyed as fresh as possible. Be careful not to overcook salmon — it is ready to eat when the flesh turns opaque and can be flaked easily with a fork.
Smoked salmon is cured in a wet brine then cold smoked for 12 hours at 23°Celsius. Wood roasted salmon is also cured then hot smoked at 40°Celcius for about six hours and further cooked for a further 40 minutes at 90°Celsius. Smoked salmon can be enjoyed without further cooking.
MIRIN & SOY GRILLED SALMON
Serve with noodles or potato mash flavoured with a little grated lemon rind.
4 tablespoons each: soy sauce, mirin
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon each: wasabi, brown sugar
4 x 175g skinned and boned salmon fillets
2 spring onions
Combine the soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil , wasabi and sugar in a bowl. Slice each fillet in half lengthways. Place in the bowl and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Thinly slice the green parts of the spring onions and place in ice-cold water to curl.
Preheat a grill to medium. Place the salmon skin-side down on a foil-lined baking tray. Grill for about 5 minutes — brushing occasionally with the marinade — until golden. Drain the spring onions and garnish the salmon. Serves 4.
SALMON WITH POMEGRANATE GLAZE
Excellent served with Auntsfield Sauvignon Blanc.
1/2 cup pomegranate syrup or molasses
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
8 salmon loins or 600g salmon fillets
Combine the pomegranate syrup, orange juice, soy sauce and
mustard. Brush about half over the skinless sides of the salmon.
Marinate in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes.
Preheat the grill or a ridged frying pan to medium heat. Cook
the salmon on medium-low, about 2-4 minutes each side
depending on the thickness. Baste once during cooking with
the reserved sauce.
Great served with a rocket or watercress salad and potato rosti.
SALMON & PINEAPPLE SALSA
Summer entertaining sorted.
Pineapple Salsa: 1 medium ripe tomato, diced
1/4 cup diced red capsicum
2 slices jalapeno pepper, diced
3/4 cup fresh pineapple cubes
salt to taste
1 tablespoon sugar
Marinade: 3 tablespoons teriyaki sauce, pineapple juice
1 teaspoon finely grated root ginger
1 clove garlic, crushed
4 boned salmon fillets (about 600g)
To prepare the salsa, place all the ingredients in a small saucepan. Poach over low heat for about 5 minutes. Cool. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Combine the teriyaki sauce, pineapple juice, ginger and garlic in a bowl. Place the salmon in a shallow dish. Pour the marinade over. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
Cook the salmon on medium in a ridged frying pan or under a grill for about 2 minutes each side or until cooked. Serve with the pineapple salsa on the side. Serves 4.