Friday, May 27, 2011

How to Cook Easy Baked Salmon with Black Bean Sauce

This Chinese-inspired baked salmon is gourmet-delicious, yet extremely easy to make. You'll love how the rich-tasting black bean sauce enhances the exquisite flavor of the salmon. This baked fish recipe also works with other types of fish, such as cod, sole, snapper, or halibut - all healthy and safe seafood choices (either fresh or frozen). This easy baked fish is superb for everyday meals, but also wonderful enough to serve to a taste-discerning crowd. ENJOY!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Yield: SERVES 2-3
  • 2-3 salmon steaks or fillets, fresh or frozen, OR other type of fish, such as cod, sole, snapper, halibut, etc...
  • 1/3 cup chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp. prepared black bean sauce, OR black bean garlic sauce (available by the jar at Asian/Chinese food stores)
  • 2 Tbsp. sherry OR cooking sherry
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. grated galangal OR ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp. fish sauce (available in tall bottles at Asian/Chinese food stores)
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar OR 1 tsp. white sugar
  • 1-2 fresh red chilies, minced, OR 1/3 to 1/2 Tbsp. dried crushed chili (from the spice aisle)
  • handful of fresh coriander
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. If using frozen fish, quickly thaw by floating the fish packet in a bowl or sink of tepid water. If using fresh fish, briefly rinse it and pat dry. Place fish in a covered, flat-bottomed baking dish. Set aside.
  3. Combine all 'Black Bean Sauce' ingredients together, stirring well to dissolve the sugar. Pour sauce over fish. Turn the fish once or twice so that it is saturated with sauce. You can either cover fish and leave to marinate OR bake right away.
  4. Cover and bake (at 350 degrees) for 15-20 minutes (12-14 for thinner fillets, 15-20 for steaks), or until the inner flesh has turned firm and opaque (no longer translucent). Avoid over-cooking or the salmon will lose its natural succulence.
  5. When fish is cooked, taste-test it with the sauce. (Taste Tip: The sauce should taste on the salty and spicy side, then when it's eaten with the fish and rice it'll be perfect.) Note that the saltiness of the sauce will depend on the type of stock you used. If not salty or flavorful enough, add another 1/2 to 1 Tbsp. fish sauce. If too salty, add a squeeze of lime or lemon juice. Add more chili if you'd like it spicier, or more sugar as desired.
  6. Portion the fish out onto individual plates. Top with some of the black bean sauce from the baking dish plus a sprinkling of spring onion and fresh coriander. Serve with rice and more of the black bean sauce on the side. ENJOY!

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