The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Friday, 26 September 2008

Hoisin Marinade for Salmon

This is a very simple marinade that I use when I want a simple no-fuss but tasty fish dinner. It goes really well with salmon fillet, but would also work well with other types of fish and chicken and even pork. I call it hoisin but I use tian mian jiang (tenmanjan in Japanese, also known as sweet noodle sauce) which is similar to hoisin sauce except it's made with fermented wheat flour and is not as spicy as hoisin. A little internet research on tian mian jiang revealed that this is the proper sauce to serve with Peking duck, and not hoisin sauce. By all means, use hoisin sauce in this marinade recipe because tian mian jiang is not as easily obtainable as hoisin sauce is in most western countries (quite the opposite here in Japan). It's easy to whip up, quicker to cook, and definitely not as labour intensive as the bulgogi bibimbap I prepared last week! Rob loves it, more than the popular orange-miso salmon recipe on Epicurious that I'd tried out before.

To cook the salmon, I use the broiler equipment that is ubiquitous in all Japanese gas stoves, but panfrying, grilling or baking should work fine too.

Hoisin Salmon

Makes 2 servings

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or minced
2 teaspoons chopped ginger
1 tablespoon tian mian jiang sauce
1 tablespoon mirin
A sprinkle of chilli powder
A tiny dash of sesame oil
1 teaspoon vinegar
2 salmon fillets

Mix the marinade ingredients together, and coat the salmon fillets with the marinade. Let it marinate for half an hour unrefrigerated before placing skin side down in the broiler (you need to flip it halfway through, and this way you'll get a crisp skin). Be sure to place all of the marinade bits on the salmon before cooking - the ginger and garlic bits gets crisped in the cooking process which gives the fish a lovely flavour. It takes about 10 minutes to cook (5 minutes on each side) on high. Enjoy with creamy mashed potatoes and salad.

The finished product on the broiler grate:

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