In learning to like fish, I discovered that the crusted variety was my favorite. Panko is always a good way to go, and now I’ve got a new one to add to the mix – sesame seeds. They get toasted while the salmon cooks and add so much flavor and crunch. To complement the salmon, an Asian flavored sauce is served underneath it. The sauce is savory-sweet, with a little punch from the fresh ginger and garlic. While you might be tempted to pour the sauce over the top, serving it beneath the salmon ensures that the crust stays crisp. We served this dish with some type of thin Japanese noodles, but I think we’ll opt for rice the next time around. We also made oven roasted broccoli that went well with the fish and cooked in about the same amount of time. The salmon doesn’t take long to prepare, but it looks quite impressive when done. Now that my dislike of seafood is something of the past, I’m sure we’ll be making this one again soon.
Sesame Crusted Salmon
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
1 egg white
4 salmon fillets, about 8 ounces each
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup cooking oil
In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, mirin, broth, sugar, ginger and garlic. In another small bowl, dissolve the 2 teaspoons of cornstarch in the water.
Whisk together the egg white and remaining 2 tablespoons of cornstarch, and brush the skinless side of the salmon with the mixture. Dip in sesame seeds and gently press to coat. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, place the salmon in, sesame seed side down, and cook for about 5 minutes or until golden brown. Turn and continue cooking an additional 3 minutes (for a 1-inch thick fillet) and remove from skillet.
Pour off any oil remaining in the skillet and reduce the heat to medium. Add the soy sauce mixture and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Whisk in the cornstarch-water mixture and continue cooking until sauce has thickened, about 1 additional minute. Serve the sauce alongside or underneath the salmon.
Barely adapted from Food & Wine