Sunday 17 February 2008

Salmon Teryaki

Inspired by our delicious salmon teryaki at Roka and remembering my first encounter with dark, salty, sweet, soft salmon at Sosumi in Cape Town, I was eager to create the perfect version of it.

The beauty of it is that it is so soft, almost raw. Bright pink yet salty and deep with flesh that falls apart at the seams. Just like it should. You touch it with a chopstick and it yields.

I put my Heston hat on and decided to give the salmon a good burst of marinating. A combination of teryaki sauce, shallot, galang galang, chile, coriander, mirin and a drop of sesame oil worked its way into the firm fillets for about 3 hours before I popped them in their own little Baco sous vide bags.

When we've tried the boil in the bag method before we've had great results in terms of taste but have tended to slightly over do the cooking. To avoid this we used a far bigger pan and used the lowest flame. To keep the temperature down even more we added a handful of ice cubes to the warm/hot water so that it wouldn't even think of overcooking whilst we had a bath.

I got a bit carried away with the whole water bath thing and went to check on my salmon with a towel wrapped around me. For a bit of a laugh I gave Cowie a shock by bringing one of the salmon parcels up to the bath with me and dropped it in the bath! Cowie was shocked! And even more so when I got my camera out!

But it makes an interesting point. The bath was at the ideal temperature to sous vide my salmon. It was probably at a better temperature than the pan on the stove!

When the flesh went from being firm to yielding a little when I poked it we whipped it out of the pan and opened up the pouches and drained them both into a bowl. The flesh was perfectly rare and they were deeply coloured and still, thankfully, in tact.

I took the fillets out of their juice and seared them skin side down on a griddle so the skin crisped up. There are few flavours I love more than crispy fish skin. Delicious.

In the meantime Cowie created a masterful stir fry featuring a variety of oriental mushrooms, seared pepper, sweetcorn and other oriental nibbles.

And it was stunning. Slow cooking, marinating and sous vide are the way forward. Especially when you get a bit of searing in there as well.

For our next trick we'll be cooking venison on our car engine!


Cakelaw said...

Yum, the salmon looks great. (Although I don';t think I'll be trying the bath method any time soon). I look forward to seeing that car engine venison!

Deborah Dowd said...

If cooking salmon in the bath is fun foryou you should try the Surreal Gourmet's version cooked in the dishwasher! It was so much fun to see the look on guest's faces when you took the food out of the dishwasher!

Anonymous said...

The bath method sounds brilliant and fun. Looks delicious, too.

Browners said...

I've got a couple of his books and have been meaning to do the dishwasher idea for ages. Also very keen to cook on my car engine as well!

Glad you liked the bath tub cooking. And really like your blog.

Any more ideas gratefully received!

Thanks Deborah


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