How to cook Pan-seared Salmon with a Tangy Thai Sauce
This salmon recipe is melt-in-your-mouth delicious! Fillets or steaks of marinated salmon are pan-fried, searing in the flavors and omega-3 goodness of the fish. The salmon is then served with a tangy Thai lemongrass-honey sauce that marries perfectly with salmon's natural flavors. A healthy, low-fat, and extremely delicious recipe that can be made in under 30 minutes. Great for an everyday dinner entree that even your kids will love.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yield: SERVES 2-4
2-4 salmon fillets (if making more, double the marinade/sauce) - if frozen, thaw in a bowl of cool water
1-3 Tbsp. canola oil (or other vegetable oil) for frying
1/2 cup rice vinegar (or sustitute white vinegar or apple cider vinegar)
1/4 cup honey
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 fresh red chili, minced or finely sliced, OR substitute 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp. fish sauce (available in tall bottles at Asian/Chinese food stores)
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. dark soy sauce (or substitue 1 extra Tbsp. regular soy sauce)
1 Tbsp. minced lemongrass (see link for lemongrass tips)
handful of fresh coriander or flat-leaf parsley
To make the marinade/sauce, place all marinade ingredients together in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir as you bring the sauce to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium and allow to simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered. The sauce will gradually thicken (the smell of the vinegar is rather pungent as it cooks). When marinade/sauce has thickened, place in the refrigerator or freezer to cool for 5 minutes.
Place salmon fillets in a flat-bottomed pan or cassarole dish (so that fillets aren't piled on top of each other). When the sauce/marinade has cooled (warm instead of hot), spoon 2 Tbsp. over each fillet, 1 per side, slathering it over the flesh (reserve the remaining sauce for later). Marinate in the refrigerator 10 minutes or up to 24 hours.
Place a frying pan or wok on medium-high heat, allowing it to warm up for at least 1 minute before adding the oil (this will help prevent the fish from sticking).
When pan is hot, add 1-2 Tbsp. oil, lifting and turning the pan to distribute evenly. Now place fillets in the pan.
Allow salmon to fry at least 2 minutes undisturbed before turning. If you turn the fish too soon, it will stick. Instead, allow it to "sear", and it will come freely away from the bottom of the pan.
Fry the fish 3-5 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the fish. Salmon is done when inner flesh is no longer transparent. For faster cooking, cover fish while it's frying.
To serve: arrange on a serving platter or plates. Spoon a little of the sauce over each fillet. Place the rest in a side dish and serve as a dipping sauce (it can be re-heated or served at room temperature).
Serve with Thai jasmine-scented rice, potatoes, or salad. If you want to spice things up, serve it with my Nam Prik Pao Chili Sauce Recipe on the side. Enjoy!