Posts tagged salmon

Sticky Salmon-Pineapple Kebabs, Thai black rice salad

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‘m always surprised at the amount of people who are surprised at the flavour that rice can have on its own without additional added flavours. If you pick the right rice that is. If you’re used to the same old white or even brown rice then venture out! I use red French Camargue rice as my staple now due to its wonderful nutty flavour but after stumbling over some Thai black rice recently which fell into my innocent shopping basket I had a salad on the mind. A dark and nutty flavour goes wonderfully with Thai flavours and fruits. Try mango and prawns, basil and coriander (see here) which was my initial intention. However as a nod to the gorgeous weather this weekend a barbeque inspired kebab was required. Seeing as my garden-lacking London flat could not supply my bbq needs, a sticky, sweet and if you cook the salmon well, oh so tender kebab a top this fresh and herby Thai rice salad suited Sunday evening down to the ground. Cold beer to accompany and the BAFTAS.

Serves 2 (make 4 skewers)

  • 2 salmon fillets, cut into 2cm chunks
  • 1 fresh pineapple, cubed into 2cm chunks
  • Broccoli florets (about 6-8)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 large tsp sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp runny honey
  • Small knob ginger, grated
  • 4 oz Thai black rice
  • 4 spring onions, sliced
  • 50g desiccated coconut
  • Bunch coriander, chopped (save some for garnish)
  • 2 sheets nori seaweed, cut into small 1 cm wide pieces or strips (optional)
  • 1 lime
  • 4 skewers (soaked in water for 20 minutes)
  1. Combine the soy sauce, sesame, honey and ginger in a bowl and mix well
  2. Marinade the salmon chunks, broccoli florets and pineapple chunks in this mixture for 1 hour in the fridge.
  3. After 1 hour, prepare your skewers. Feed alternating salmon and pineapple and broccoli chunks onto each. Set aside on a line baking tray and chill. Preheat the oven to 180°C.Jess - Salmon Asian KebabsJess - Salmon Asian Kebabs2
  4. Meanwhile make the rice salad. Simmer the rice for around 25 minutes until just cooked with a little bite.
  5. While this is cooking toasted the coconut in a dry frying pan until just bringing to turn golden. Watch it as it catches easily. When fragrant, remove and add to a bowl.
  6. Combine with the chopped spring onions, coriander and the chopped nori sheets.
  7. When the rice is ready, drain well. Immediately add the bowl of coconut and herbs and squeeze in the juice of the lime. Place a lid on top and keep warm.
  8. Remove the salmon skewers from the fridge and heat a frying pan until hot and add a tsp of oil.
  9. Sear the skewers on both sides to get a lovely caramelised effect all over. Add the rest of the marinade to the pan (it will sizzle) and then immediately transfer the skewers and the pan juices to the baking tray. Pop in the oven for 5 minutes to finish the cooking.
  10. Meanwhile, plate up the rice in warm serving dishes. After 5 minutes check the salmon is tender and cooked through but just pink and remove from the oven. Top your Thai rice salad with the kebabs and any extra chopped coriander to garnish.

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Urfa Chilli Salmon, Polenta Chips, Smashed Avocado

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ts been a long and draining week at work and with Saturday looming and the pressure to make the most of it I could think of nothing better than a casual blogging session in the kitchen to calm the stresses from the week and allow my mind to wonder onto the creative and less challenging. The biggest decision in this recipe was how big to cut the chips!? I went for big naturally.

On reflection, this dish is essentially Mexican fish and chips!? And its for the chilli lovers as its a spicy one so make sure you have a nice cooling beer to hand or at least some soured cream. My inspiration for this one was the cheeky jar of Ottolenghi’s ‘Urfa chilli flakes’ (see here) I received as a gift. What the ‘urfa’ are those you might ask!? Well they are a Turkish medium heat chilli with a smoky flavour. A lovely deep and purposeful taste great for barbecued meats, oily fish, roasted vegetables or chilli con carne. I used them here to coat some moist and succulent salmon fillets. Accompanied with some spicy crisp polenta chips and some smashed green avocado I felt like I bought a bit of Mexico to London. Hopefully one day I can bring a bit of London to Mexico!?

Serves 2

  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 2 tsp urfa chilli flakes
  • 1 large avocado
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped
  • Large bunch coriander, chopped
  • Large bunch basil, chopped
  • 1/2 green chilli, finely chopped
  • Juice 1/2 – 1 lime
  • 100g fast cook polenta
  • 500ml chicken stock or water
  • 1 heaped tsp chilli flakes
  • Knob butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • Sunflower oil

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  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Oil a bowl/small baking tray or something appropriate to hold your polenta in and allow it to set before cutting into chips.
  2. Start with the polenta. Bring the stock or water to the boil in a saucepan. Mix the polenta, chilli flakes and some salt and pepper in a bowl. In a gentle stream add this polenta to the stock in the saucepan, whisking all the time and turn the heat down to a medium low instantly. Whisk continuously for about 5-7 minutes until the polenta thickens and bubbles. Add the butter and mix in well.
  3. Pour the mixture into the oil lined tray spreading it out into an even layer of about 2inch thickness. Quickly chill by placing in the freezer for 5-10 minutes and then in the fridge and cooling completely until set.
  4. Meanwhile mix the urfa chilli flakes and some salt and pepper with a tablespoon of oil. Rub this on the salmon fillets and leave to marinade at room temperature.
  5. Next, cut the avocado into chunks and use a fork to mash into a chunky paste. Season and then add the spring onion, herbs, lime juice and combine into a chunky paste. Check the taste and add more lime if needed.
  6. When the polenta has set, turn it out onto a chopping board dusted with lots of excess polenta. Chop the set polenta (which should be the texture of halloumi!?) into chip sized chunks and roll in the excess polenta.
  7. Heat a frying pan on a medium high heat and fry the chips in a few tablespoons of sunflower oil until golden brown all over making sure they don’t stick to the pan or catch. Once crispy remove from the pan, scatter with flaky sea salt and set aside to keep warm.
  8. In the same pan cook the salmon on a high heat skin side down for about 1 minutes to crisp the skin. Turn to char the flesh side for about another minute or so before placing in the oven skin side down to finish cooking for no more than 5 minutes to ensure it remains succulent and just pink.
  9. To serve, top the chips with the salmon and spoon on a generous quenelle of avocado. Scatter with extra coriander and chilli flakes if you like

Have some beer or soured cream to hand…

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Cajuan Salmon and Sweetcorn Puree

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k. I’ll admit this isn’t very festive…or wintery…or seasonal. Apologies. But frankly the unprecedented warm weather recently has sent us all into a state of confusion!? And following a few too many glasses of mulled wine after the annual village Christmas carol concert and a need for something fresh, filling and quick, Cajuan salmon seemed like the obvious choice…? Obvious right?

Serves 2

  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 1 tsp of smoked paprika and cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 can sweetcorn
  • 1/2 lime, zest and juice
  • Pinch chilli flakes
  • 30g butter
  • Bunch coriander, chopped
  • Mix of broccoli – purple sprouting and normal (enough for 2), chopped into florets
  • 1 banana shallot, halved and finely sliced into half moons
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • Sunflower oil for frying
  • Natural yoghurt to serve
  1. Marinade the salmon in the dried spices, some seasoning and the olive oil and put in the fridge for about 20 minutes
  2. Heat a good layer of sunflower oil in a frying pan until hot. Mix the flour and the chopped shallots in a bowl and season.
  3. When the oil is hot add the shallots and fry, moving around with a fork, until deep golden and crisp. Tip into a bowl lined with kitchen roll and season. Set aside.
  4. In the same pan, add another drop of oil and stir fry the broccoli gently until charred. Set aside to keep warm in a low oven.
  5. Simmer the sweetcorn in the canned juices and enough water to cover for 3-4 minutes. Drain
  6. Add to the bowl of a food processor while hot and add the butter, chilli, coriander, juice and zest of the lime and some seasoning. Puree until smooth and taste. Set aside to keep warm in a pan.
  7. Finally, heat a splash of oil in your frying pan until hot. Fry the salmon, skin side down for about 5 minutes, turning halfway, depending on the thickness. Equally this would be excellent grilled on a grilled but mine was out of action!Jess - salmon
  8. When ready to serve, spoon a generous helping of sweetcorn puree onto a warmed plate. Top with the salmon. Mix the crispy onions with the warm broccoli and serve on the side and sprinkle with any extra coriander leaves.

Add some natural yoghurt if the what gets too much!

Jess - broccoli

Harissa Salmon

This is a beautiful salmon recipe. Not just aesthetically but a taste bud teaser too. And not just for salmon….the first time I made this I used a lovely white sea bream fillet which also stands up to the harissa flavour well. Harissa is a lovely firey Tunisian paste made form red peppers, hot chillis and spices and has a natural affinity with rose from its neighbouring Moroccan friend. Salmon filliets rubbed in this spicy paste and cooled with a vibrant lime and turmeric yoghurt were a match made in North African Tunisian heaven.

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Serves 2

  • 2 salmon (or sea bream) fillets
  • 1 heaped tsp harissa paste
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 150g natural yoghurt
  • 1 lime, juice and zest
  • Small knob of fresh turmeric
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • Coriander to garnish
  • Rose petal to garish (optional)
  • Brown rice/couscous to serve
  1. Begin by marinading the salmon fillets. Mix together the cumin and harissa in a bowl and rub the salmon fillets in this paste all over. Season and set aside for a few hours in the fridge to infuse
  2. Meanwhile, make the yoghurt. Mix together the yoghurt, zest and ½ the juice of the lime and season. Grated in the turmeric root (careful it will stain your hands!) and finally stir in the ground turmeric.
  3. Season well and taste. Add more lime juice if you think it needs more zesty taste. Set aside
  4. When ready to cook your salmon, heat to over to 190°C.
  5. Heat a frying pan over a medium high heat and add 1tbsp oil.
  6. Fry the salmon, skin side down to crisp the skin for about 1-2 minutes. The harissa may catch and look burnt but this is ok. Turn to sear on the flesh side for a further minute to create a golden crust.
  7. Immediately transfer to the oven on a foil lined baking tray and cook for about 5 minutes depending on how thick your salmon is. Don’t be tempted to over cook this! Salmon will take no time at all in a hot oven and will carry on cooking when removed anyway.
  8. Serve the salmon on a generous spoonful of your creamy yoghurt. Top with a scattering of rose petals and chopped coriander alongside some rice or couscous.

Thai ‘Papaya Noodle’ Salad

 

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I bought a Papaya on a wim. As an extremely disciplined person by nature, I find it annoyingly frustrating that I can never resist a supermarket food offer! After freely placing it in my basket without a second economic thought, my mind began racing over what to make with it. On my walk home, sat in the cinema that same afternoon and whilst relaxing in the bath the culinary devil sat on my shoulder. With salmon in the fridge I couldn’t resist the flavoursome attraction of Thai ingredients to combine with from the pantry.

This recipe is loosely based on one by ‘The Hairy Bikers’. However it does emit some of the ingredients suggested as the pantry let me down (shocker) on tamarind water….but it tasted delicious! And who knows, it could taste even better? The important thing here is to make the dressing seperately and taste as you go along adding more of any ingredient you need depending on the taste which is how I came up with the below. Only then, once you have it to your liking, should you dress the salad. This may sound hard but trust your instinct and taste buds! See below for help.

Serves 2-3 depending on appetite!

  • 1 large papaya, peeled and chopped into matchsticks of julienned with a peeler
  • 3 oz red camague rice
  • 1 small red chilli, finely copped
  • 2cm knob ginger, half grated, half finely chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, grated
  • Juice 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 ½ tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 ½ tbsp sugar (palm or brown sugar)
  • Bunch mint leavves, chopped roughly
  • Bunch basil, chopped roughly
  • Large handful roasted peanuts
  • 2-3 salmon fillets
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  1. Start by simmering the rice in boiling water for about 20 minutes until cooked. Drain and keep warm
  2. Next make the dressing. In a large bowl, mix together the chopped chilli, garlic, ginger, lime juice, soy, fish sauce and sugar. Give it all a good mix and taste. Add more of what you think it needs. This may be hard but use your instinct. Add more lime for sharpness, sugar for sweetness and soy for savoury saltiness. Quantities will all depend on the ingredients you start with. The soy I used here for example was even new to me –  a very dark, intense type unlike my usual light soy which is less pungent.
  3. Set aside the dressing when you’re happy with it while you julienne the papaya. I have a special peeler for this which I highly recommend if you’re into your raw vege noodles (see here). If not, chopp into matchsticks.
  4. You want to assemble the salad at the last minute when ready to eat so cook your salmon and broccoli before this. Heat a large fryng pan until medium-hot. Add a tbsp olive oil and fry the salmon fillets, skin side down for about 3 minutes on the skin side. Once the skin is nice and crispy turn onto the flesh side and cook for a further 2 minutes to brown it all over and create a lovely charred crust on the outside. Don’t be tempted to cook the salmon longer, the crust on the outside will be a delicous contrast to the soft just-pink inside. No matter what thickness the salmon, it should (generally) never take more than 5 minutes in a medium hot pan. Additionally, it will continue cooking while you bring it to the table.
  5. Steam or boil your broccoli and drain. Drizzle with the sesame oil.
  6. When ready to serve, combine the rice with a few tablespoons of dressing. Add the papaya, chopped herbs and peanuts and mix (reserving a handful or herbs for garnish). Add enough dressing to your liking but make sure its not swimming in the stuff!
  7. Top the salad with your tender salmon fillets alongside your freshly cooked broccoli and scatter with the reserved herbs.

WINE: Excellent served with a delicious Riesling (see here for a suggestion)

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Lime Salmon, Sesame Courgette Noodles

 

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Here is a delicious new salmon recipe I’ve been meaning to attempt! Inspired and adapted from ‘Moorish; cook book. Drying the lime zest here really intensifies the flavour and baking in a parchment parcel guarantees a beautifully moist salmon fillet. Serving suggestions are endless but I’m obsessed with my julienne peeler so not even my countlessly grated fingers (they are very sharp!) has stopped my experiments. Use here for a courgette ‘noodle’ salad. I literally think I’d choose these oven pasta in a blind tasting. Healthier and more delicious. Sorry Italy.

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Serves 2

Lime Salmon

  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, lightly roasted and crushed
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • Pinch Cayenne pepper/Chilli powder
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Courgette Noodle Salad

  • 1 large courgette
  • ½ small cucumber
  • Bunch mint, finely chopped
  • Bunch coriander, chopped
  • Small green chilli, chopped finely
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • Juice ½ lime
  • Handful roasted salted peanuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 75°C. Place the lime zest on a piece of parchment on a baking tray and dry in the low oven for about 20 minutes to intensify the flavours. Alternatively you can leave it to dry overnight.
  2. Mix the dried zest with the fennel seed, chilli and cayenne.
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    Turn the oven up to 190°C. Rub the salmon in olive oil and coat with the spice mix. Place each fillet on an oiled piece of parchment and wrap into a parcel. If you fillets are the same thickness as mine, roast for 10minutes which will give you a lovely slightly pink centre.
  4. Meanwhile, using a julienne peeler (recommended purchase for any health food/raw food junkie. They are so quick to use) julienne the courgette and the cucumber into a bowl. Add the chopped herbs and chilli and scatter with the nuts. Mix with the sesame oil and the lime juice and toss all together,
  5. When the salmon is cooked, remove from the parchment and serve on top of the courgette noodles and rice if you like!

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Pearl Barley with Walnut, Mint and Basil Pesto

 

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Pesto is such a great addition to bland food – pearl barley, pasta, tossed on boiled vege of ripped through your favourite pizza dough base (personal favourite!) I’m not a regular to the jar of shop bought but sometimes a tablespoon of the punchy stuff is needed, homemade or not. Pesto is all about the basic ingredients (Parmesan cheese, fresh herbs, nuts, lemon and oil) mixed until you get the right balance. Basil and pine nuts if you’re a traditionalist but its also delicious with other nuts or herbs. As usual, my lazy self can’t be bothered to weigh so the ‘handful’ measurement has come in again here….I have averaged-small sized hands so do as you please…

Serves 2

Pearl Barley with Walnut, Mint and Basil Pesto

  • 120g pearl barely
  • Handful walnuts
  • Handful grated parmesan
  • ½ lemon
  • Large bunch basil and mint, leaves picked
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 x salmon fillets
  • Slow roasted balsamic onions (see here)
  1. Toast the walnuts in a hot dry frying pan until fragrant or roast in a hot oven for about 6 minutes until warm and smelling delicious!
  2. Transfer to a pestle and mortar or a food processor. Pulse until you have fine crumbs with texture.
  3. Add the herbs, garlic and cheese and blend. Season and thin out with the lemon juice and enough oil to get the right consistency for your liking.
  4. Taste and adjust with more of the above.
  5. Cook your pearl barely until tender in a pan of simmering water. When ready, drain and toss liberally with the pesto. Stir through a few whole walnuts and chopped herbs too if you like. Set aside at room temperature
  6. Roast the salmon in a 200°C preheated oven or pan fry, skin side down until crisp and cooked.
  7. Serve the barely topped with salmon, a spoonful of roasted balsamic onions if you like (see here). Drizzle with a good oil and scatter with mint. Serve with greens beans or similar…

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Glazed Salmon, Asian Greens, Sesame Cucumber

 

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I can’t believe my birthday has come and gone yet again. With another year under my ageing belt it only seemed natural to add another cookbook to my ‘library’. It really is expanding at such a rate that I may have to develop some sort of filing system soon. I currently have them stored in a few tame and humble 6 bottle old wooden wine cases but with each eager book spilling out over the edge, oozing its glossy (some more oil splattered) pictures in front of me it may be time to move out to a magnum case…?

To cut a long story short, my birthday granted me with Bill Granger’s Everyday Asian cookbook. I love this quick and flavourful cooking  but with more of a traditional palate I needed a helping hand and a point in the right direction or orientation should I say. East. And to help me along the way not only did I get this vibrant drool-worthy book that I literally want to cook every recipe of (rare I assure you) I also received a few of Bill’s Asian ‘Pantry staples’ to add to my other collection (again, yet to have its own filing system) and some beautiful serving bowls. After all presentation can be half the battle!

NOTE: for those into this style of food I really recommend Bill’s book. There may be some alien ingredients but nothing a quick trip down the ethnic aisle of Tesco can’t solve. A simply written, helpful book. And you really will want to cook everything…there just aren’t enough mealtimes in the day or days in the week unless I start replacing my morning tea with miso soup? Unlikely.

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Glazed Salmon

Serves 4

  • 4 tbsp mirin
  • 4tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown soft sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 4 salmon fillets
  1. Combine all the marinade ingredients together in a shallow bowl with the salmon fillets and pop in the fridge for 5-10 minutes.
  2. Preheat your grill or BBQ. Grill for about 7minutes or so until charred on the outside but still pink and very most in the middle. Don’t be tempted to cook too long. The residual heat will carry on cooking it once removed from the grill and it is better served a little pink in the middle.
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Sesame Cucumber

  • 1 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp ride vinegar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 cucumber
  1. Use a mandolin/speed peeler to peel thin strips of cucumber into a bowl.
  2. Combine the dressing ingredients and drizzle over the cucumber

Broccoli

  • 1 head broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 red chilli, sliced finely
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, sliced finely
  1. Boil your broccoli for a matter of minutes until still al dente and bright green. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat a thin layer of oil in a frying pan until hot. Flash fry your chilli and shallots until crispy. Add the garlic slices at the end as they will burn easily and fry until golden and crispy. Scoop out from the oil and drain and allow to crisp.
  3. Serve the broccoli, warm and scattered with the crispy garnish and a little drizzle of the infused oil

imageBeautiful serving dish courtesy of my sister and the Portobello markets

Thai Crispy Salmon

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This is a great way to serve salmon in the summer- wrapped in a crispy shield of filo pastry but juicy and pink inside. I’ve used a Thai style salsa inside but really it can take anything….chilli jam works well or even a spoonful of pesto. Served with some boiled Jersey Royals covered in a insulating blanket of melted butter; a scattering of diced sweet shallot; some feather like ribbons of chopped garden mint and a sprinkle of garlicky chives from the garden…summer!

Thai salmon (Serves 2, adapted from Delia Smith)

  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • Small handful of chopped coriander
  • 1-2 spring onions, chopped
  • 1 lime, zest and juice
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 2-4 sheets filo pastry
  • 25g butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C.
  2. Mix the ginger, coriander, spring onions, garlic and lime together in a bowl.
  3. Lay one or two sheets of filo pastry (depending on the size of your salmon. If they are large then 2 may be a better option) on the work top and brush with melted butter. Place one salmon fillet at one edge of the pastry and top with half the Thai mixture. Roll up like a present and tuck the ends underneath. Brush generously with melted butter and scatter with sesame seeds. Place on a baking tray and repeat with the other salmon fillet.
  4. Bake for 15- 20 minutes until the pastry is golden and crisp. Serve!

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Asian Salmon and Coconut Rice

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I’ve cooked this recipe far too many times in the past couple of weeks. With revision STILL on the go it is a fresh but really satisfying meal which is also a hopeless attempt at consuming some more oily fish to fuel my brain! I’ve been unhelpfully vague in the method as all depends on the rice, coconut milk and salmon you use which will vary the cooking time and the quantities a little. The timings will vary but use your instincts and aim for a crispy skinned dark soy salmon that is moist and just cooked with a creamy coconut rice. You may not get the timings perfect on the first shot but I guarantee you’ll make it again to get it right!

Serves 2

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 oz brown/wild rice
  • 2 salmon fillets
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • 2cm grated ginger
  • 1 lime, zest and wedges for serving
  • Scattering of sesame seeds
  1. Mix the soy, oils, ginger and honey together and leave the salmon to marinade in the mix for at least 1 hour in the fridge.
  2. Bring the coconut milk to the boil with a small cup of hot water and simmer the rice gently for about 20-25 minutes until cooked. The coconut milk you use in terms of thickness will vary so top up with hot water if it starts to look dry or if it is a thick variety, dilute down. What you’re aiming for is for the rice to cook in the time that it takes the coconut milk to reduce so you should end up with a creamy rice. If it is still looking drowned towards the end of cooking, turn the heat up and simmer more strongly. I like to use brown rice for its nutty flavour and texture.
  3. Once cooked, stir in the grated zest of the lime and keep warm.
  4. While the rice is cooking, preheat your grill to high and (skin side up) grill your salmon for about 5 minutes depending on thickness, until just cooked and moist with a dark soy crisp skin.
  5. Simmer the remaining marinade in a saucepan to warm and thicken.
  6. Serve your salmon on top of your coconut rice drizzled with a little of the warm marinade. Scatter with a handful of sesame seeds and a wedge of lime for squeezing. Serve with steamed broccoli.

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