Monday, August 8, 2011

Asian Salmon with Ginger Scallion Sauce

Asian Grilled Salmon with Ginger Scallion Sauce

Without being too dramatic, I'll just say that if you were to die tomorrow you need run to the store to make this recipe for dinner tonight. It is honestly one of the best things I have ever tasted, ever. Was that too dramatic? Because I toned it down, a lot. *sigh*

A while back, my friend Caroline sent me a recipe for this ginger scallion sauce which is more like a relish, from Momofuku . I thought it sounded really good and all but seriously underestimated it. It wasn't something I wasn't going to run out and make it right away but rather file away in my mind until the appropriate time. Can I just say, I really, really wish Caroline would have told me how unbelievable this was. I wish she ranted and raved and let me know. But she didn't. She just sent the recipe to me with a casual "oh, we make this a lot and really like it". Caroline, is very understated. It is one of the things I like about her, but it didn't work out for my benefit in this particular context. It's okay, because eventually it was made and I swooned, and ranted and raved and jumped up and down and closed my eyes when I chewed--all the things Caroline probably did not. My Aunt Kellie was over for dinner that night and when she took her first bite, she whipped her head up, popped her eyes open wide, smiled and said "this is delicious!" Delicious, as it turns out, became the word of the week as we all looked back and commented on that dinner.

The sauce is made up of just six ingredients: a whole lot of scallions and fresh ginger, oil for binding, and soy sauce and sherry vinegar for flavoring. A little salt rounds everything out. Sounds good, right? No, let me set you straight...I don't know what sort of brew-ha-ha magic happens when you combine these ingredients together in that bowl, but it blends and becomes mellow but full and flavorful and almost buttery, although I am not sure how. You will want to eat this plain with a spoon. Just don't because you will need a lot for your salmon. Trust me, you will keep heaping it on as you eat. Make the whole recipe. I read through it and thought to myself that 2 1/2 cups of scallions is sure an awful lot, and it is, but it wilts and condenses when added to the other ingredients, so suck it up and chop.

I have no problems chopping my ginger finely, but I think Caroline peels and keeps her ginger in the freezer. When the ginger is frozen, you can shave it on a grater for very fine pieces without it all turning to liquid mush. Which ever method you use is fine, you just want a small dice or shavings, not mush. I like to use a serrated knife to cut ginger because I find it allows for cleaner, thinner and more precise pieces.

Asian Salmon with Ginger Scallion Sauce
ginger scallion sauce adapted from Momofuku Cookbook, by David Chang
Asian salmon marinade adapted from Ina Garten
serves 6

Ginger Scallion Sauce:
2 1/2 cups thinly sliced scallions (green and whites, from about 2 large bunches)
1/2 cup finely minced fresh ginger
1/4 cup grapeseed or other neutral oil ( I used light olive oil - it worked fine)
1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
3/4 teaspoon sherry vinegar or mirin
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt, more to taste

Mix everything together in a bowl. Taste and check for salt, adding more if needed. Let the marinate sit at room temperature while you make the salmon and allow it to wilt together, at least 20 minutes. Add to the top of cooked salmon.

Asian Salmon Marinade:
makes enough for a side of salmon

1 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic

Whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Drizzle the marinade over the salmon and allow to sit for 10 minutes.

Grill the salmon over medium heat until cooked through. Everyone grills salmon differently, but we like to put it on the grill skin side down, then shut the lid and let it cook through for about 5-7 minutes. Check for doneness by pricking the middle of the salmon with a fork. If it flakes, it's done. The cooking time will all depend on the thickness of the fish.

Serve salmon with a mound of the ginger scallion sauce on top and drool.

I admit, I have been a little heavy with the Asian/Thai stuff lately but I just love it so I hope you bear with me. I only share recipes I absolutely love, unless otherwise stated (like when I blogged about this white chicken chili, not because it was the most awesome thing I have ever eaten, but because I made it in 5 minutes, used all pre-ready foods which I normally don't do, and it honestly tasted really great). I like to tell you about those things too. :)


  1. This looks absolutely amazing! I keep my ginger in the freezer, as well, and grate it when I need it. It works wonderfully for me. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I would have thought to myself "that sounds good, I will have to remember it" but now I will heed your advice and make it tonight!

  3. I (Caroline) laughed out loud reading this! I am honored by the mention. :) I am going to try your salmon recipe.

  4. Krista this looks amazing! I nominated you for an award today on my blog. check it out if you have a mins

  5. It sounds wonderful...I do love ginger with salmon.

  6. OMG that looks amazing!! I am soooo trying this! Thank you for the recipe.

    Very cute blog.
    New follower <3

    Lots of Love,

  7. this looks amazing i love anything asian and anything salmon, thanks for sharing the recipe!

  8. thanks so much for this. i just pulled a huge handful of scallions from the garden and wasn't sure how best to use my bounty. problem solved! can't wait to try it. :)