Seriously Simple

Slow Roasted Salmon with Miso Vinaigrette: A simple technique with great results

July 3, 2012 

Slow Roasted Salmon with Miso Vinaigrette.

COURTESY OF NOEL BARNHURST

  • Slow Roasted Salmon with Miso Vinaigrette This may be served as a chilled entree. After the fish is cooked, let it come to room temperature. Loosely cover and refrigerate until serving. The sauce can be covered up to 4 hours ahead of serving and kept at room temperature. Vinaigrette: 2 tablespoons white (or light yellow) miso 1 teaspoon prepared wasabi 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/2 cup finely chopped European cucumber 2 pounds salmon filets, skin removed, cut into 4 to 6 equal serving pieces 1 tablespoon olive oil Salt and freshly ground black pepper WHISK miso, wasabi, vinegar, olive oil and cucumber in a small bowl. You can add more oil if the sauce is too thick. Set aside. PREHEAT the oven to 275 degrees. Rub both sides of each piece of the salmon with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. PLACE skin side down on a nonstick or foil-lined baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 18 to 22 minutes, depending upon the thickness, or until flaky and just cooked through. Thicker pieces will require longer roasting. The salmon will appear very moist. PLACE the salmon on serving plates and spoon the vinaigrette over the salmon and serve immediately. Yield: Serves 4 to 6

Salmon is a perfect summer main course. It can be poached, roasted or grilled with equally great results. I like to slow-roast the salmon in a 275-degree oven, as it produces a creamy, moist texture. Whether I am serving it chilled or warm, the technique remains the same – I prefer slow roasting to poaching because I find it much easier and there is less cleanup. And the kitchen doesn’t get too hot. There is no need for a poaching vessel; a baking sheet with sides will suffice.

I am often asked what kind of salmon I like best. Well, it depends on what looks and smells the freshest. Farm-raised salmon is available year-round, but many fish lovers reject this type due to its mild flavor. There is also controversy over whether farm-raised fish have higher levels of toxins than wild varieties. I ask my fishmongers what they know about the farm where the fish is raised and whether they have checked on the toxin levels. If I am satisfied with the answer, I will buy it.

If you prefer wild salmon, you are in luck during the summer since both Atlantic and Alaskan varieties are abundant at this time of year. When selecting salmon, check for a slightly sweet odor and firm flesh. Salmon filets may have “pin” bones (tiny bones). These bones are often buried vertically in the thickest part of the flesh. To remove them, press the meat with your fingers and remove any bones that appear. Tweezers come in handy for this job.

A light Asian-style miso and cucumber sauce complements the salmon just right. Serve this with a simple rice pilaf flavored with peas or zucchini and chopped cilantro for a satisfying quick dinner. To drink, why not try a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, a California Viognier or a fruity, slightly sweet Riesling?

Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. Contact her at www.seriouslysimple.com

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Slow-roasted Salmon with Miso Vinaigrette

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