Sunday, July 31, 2011

asian-inspired baked salmon

dinner in the oven!

This meal is quick, easy and you won't have any pots to clean!

Sometimes you get home from work and you just don't feel like making a big mess in the kitchen.  This dinner is perfect for those days - all you need is your oven, a cookie sheet and an oven-proof baking dish.  The Asian-inspired flavour combination of salty, sweet, sour, and umami really make this meal satisfying and delicious.

what you need:
*serves 2*

  • 1 small bunch of asparagus
  • 2 pieces of salmon fillet (about 4-5 ounces each)
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1 green onion
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • canola oil, olive oil
  • 2 gloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 5 dashes each of mirin and ponzu 
  • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper
what to do:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  
  2. Mix 1 tbsp canola oil, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, mirin, ponzu and vinegar in a bowl.  Add the salmon and gently roll it around so the entire fish is covered with the marinade.  Set aside in the fridge.
  3. Wash sweet potato thoroughly and leaving the skin on, cut into 1 1/2" thick medallions.  Toss in a bowl with 1 tbsp olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper.  Arrange on one half of your cookie sheet (line with parchment paper or aluminum foil).  Place in the middle rack of your oven.
  4. Trim off tough bottom bits of the asparagus (about 1" off).  Toss the same bowl as above, adding a little more olive oil, salt and pepper as required.  Once the sweet potatoes have been in the oven for about 10 minutes, remove cookie sheet and spread asparagus out on the other half of the cookie sheet, do not stack them.  Return the cookie sheet into the middle rack of your oven.
  5. Cut the green onion on a sharp angle to get the blade effect.
  6. Line a oven-proof glass baking dish with parchment paper (make sure there is extra paper that flows over the edges of the dish) and place salmon fillets in the centre with the skin side up.  Add the rest of the marinating liquid and then take each corner of the paper and bring it to the centre and fold a few times to make a loose package enclosing the salmon.
  7. Check the vegetables in about 10 minutes.  You want to flip the sweet potatoes and roll the asparagus around a little to get even browning.  Once you flip the veggies, put the dish with the salmon onto the top rack of the oven. Continue baking for about 10-15 minutes, depending on how well done you like your salmon.
  8. Remove veggies once they are lightly browned.  Remove the salmon baking dish and cut away the extra parchment paper - turn the oven to broil and put the salmon back in for another minute or two (keep a close eye, it can burn quickly). The skin should crisp up nicely and become golden brown.
  9. Arrange the asparagus, salmon and sweet potatoes on a plate.  Drizzle honey on the salmon and then sprinkle sesame seeds and scallions to garnish.  Serve hot and enjoy!
Enjoy minimal cleaning since you've lined all your bake-ware with parchment paper :)

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