Get ready to try a superb Chinese fish dish — soy-braised salmon! It’s a recipe from an upcoming In 30 Minutes title on Chinese cooking by author Shiao-jang Kung (Update: The ebook Easy Chinese Recipes In 30 Minutes was just released). The recipes in the book are easy to cook (all take less than 30 minutes from start to finish), and use simple, healthy ingredients that you can buy at any American supermarket. The ebook also contains embedded videos.
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The recipe is printed below. If you try to make the soy-braised salmon dish, please let us know in the comments how it went!
Soy-braised salmon (蔥燒鮭魚)
- Cooking oil: 2 tablespoons
- Onions: One large onion or two small ones — about 1 to 1.5 cups, sliced into rough strands about the width of a pencil. The onion will give the dish some sweetness.
- Scallions: Two scallions, with the ends trimmed and sliced diagonally to make longer strands.
- Ginger: 2 inch long stub. Cut off the skin and slice into rough strands about the thickness of cooked spaghetti.
- Salmon filets – 1 pound, cut into 3-inch wide strips (4 or 5). If it has skin, that’s OK — it can be removed after cooking.
- Rice wine (or substitute white wine or beer): 1/4 cup
- White sugar or brown sugar: 1/8 teaspoon. You can also substitute Japanese mirin (about 1 tablespoon).
- Soy sauce: 6 tablespoons
Prepare the ingredients. This should take 5-10 minutes.
Turn on heat below wok to high. Add the cooking oil. After one minute, add ginger, onion, and scallions, and stir them around to coat with oil. Stir regularly over next five minutes. When the mixture is throwing off fragrance, lay the strips of fish on top. Mix wine or beer with the sugar, then add the liquid to the wok. Pour the soy in equal amounts over the fish. Cover the wok and turn down heat to medium-high.
Cook covered for 5 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium, and open cover. The sauce should be a bit thicker and bubbling. The top of the fish may look a little pale. Using a spatula, lift one of the pieces to check the bottom of the fish. If it’s light brown on the bottom, the soy flavor is getting into the fish and you can flip all of the pieces so the pale side is facing down. If not, cover the fish for two more minutes and then flip the pieces.
After the pieces have been flipped, cover the wok and cook for two more minutes. Turn down the heat to medium-low, and take off the cover. Check to see if the fish is done by taking a fork and opening the end of one of the fatter pieces. If it’s flaky and not red inside, you’re done — turn off the heat and serve!
You can add a little sesame oil (drizzle about 1/2 teaspoon) over the fish to add a little more flavor, but it tastes pretty good by itself over rice!